Holiday PPM Data – Part Three. Just released is the third round of Nielsen Audio’s Holiday 2013 PPM ratings data for markets including Portland, Charlotte, Pittsburgh, Sacramento, San Antonio, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Salt Lake City, Las Vegas, Kansas City, Orlando, and Columbus. You can see complete market numbers here and in addition, RadioInfo managing editor Mike Kinosian provides his “Ten Takeaways” from this latest group below.
- Portland – KKCW “K-103” enjoys its third straight up trend (6.8 – 7.0 – 8.6 – 15.1), this one a potent +6.5, bringing the Clear Channel adult contemporary outlet to double-digits (6+) for the first time since March and its best numbers since “Holiday” 2012 (15.8). Two cluster-mates, however, are among those adversely affected by the massive “K-103” gain: Classic hits-oldies KLTH is -1.1 (4.7 – 3.6, #6 in December to #10) and talk KEX loses one full-share (3.0 – 2.0, #17 to #18). While Entercom‘s KWJJ “The Wolf” remains at #14, the country station drops four-tenths to 3.2, marking its fifth consecutive (6+) decline (6.5 – 5.1 – 4.7 – 4.0 – 3.6 – 3.2, August-“Holiday”); it ranked third in August.
- Charlotte – CBS Radio owns four of this market’s top five (6+), including adult contemporary WKQC “K-104.7,” which vaults from fifth to first, dislodging urban AC cluster-mate WBAV (7.6 – 7.4, #2). Not only is this the fourth successive positive sweep for “K-104.7” (5.1 – 5.3 – 5.4 – 5.6 – 10.9), the +5.3 nearly doubles its December (6+) share. Although taking a significant hit (-1.4 to 5.9), urban contemporary sibling WPEG only dips from second to third. Greater Media talk outlet WBT is off by nine-tenths (4.4 – 3.5), as it falls from #11 in December to a three-way tie at #12.
- Pittsburgh – Thankfully for Pirates fans, ending in 2013 was the National League team’s string of 20 straight losing seasons. Now, on a positive note, WWSW “3WS” is putting together its own impressive “Steel City” streak. The Clear Channel classic hits-oldies outlet has been flat or up in every PPM report since May. That includes December’s +1.7 and a huge +4.8 in “Holiday” (6.3 – 6.4 – 6.6 – 6.6 – 6.8 – 6.9 – 7.1 – 8.8 – 13.6). The 13.6 surpasses the station’s “Holiday” 2012 (6+) stat by one-half share. In December, cluster-mate WPGB posted its lowest 6+ total since PPM became ratings currency in Pittsburgh. The talker drops another nine-tenths (3.0 – 2.1), however, it remains at #11. CBS Radio country outlet WDSY (#3 to #5) is down for the fourth straight time – this time by 1.6 shares (8.8 – 8.0 – 7.9 – 7.8 – 6.2). Also feeling the effects of all-Christmas music on “3WS” is Steel City Media hot AC WLTJ (4.6 – 3.3, -1.3), which slides from a seventh-place tie to ninth.
- Sacramento – In addition to boasting its highest 6+-share since PPM went into effect in California’s capital city and crossing the nine-share threshold for the first time, CBS Radio adult contemporary KYMX “Mix” more than doubles its December share (4.5 – 9.2, +4.7) to vault from #8 to #1. As did “Mix,” Clear Channel-owned KHLX “Classic 93.1” (2.5 – 4.0, +1.5) participated in the all-Christmas music spirit during the sweep and it advances from #18 in December to #8. The day after Christmas, KHLX dumped its “Classic Hits of the ’70s and ’80s” brand to simulcast talk KFBK-AM under new call letters – KFBK-FM; however, that would be a short-lived transition. Approximately two weeks ago (1/10), the station changed again – this time to “Today’s Country,” adopting KBEB as it new calls.
- San Antonio – After November – December’s +2.8 (4.4 – 7.2), KQXT “Q-101.9” tacks on four and one half shares to 11.7, enabling the Clear Channel adult contemporary to climb from third to first. In the process, it pushes out country sibling KAJA “KJ 97” (7.6 – 6.6, -1.0), which shared the lead with Cox Media Group classic hits-oldies KONO. This is the first time “KJ 97” has not been either in sole possession – or tied – at #1 since “Holiday” 2012. Then, as now, “Q-101.9” was #1. Regarding KONO, it had been up or steady (6+) since September (6.8 – 7.2 – 7.2 – 7.6), but regresses by 1.5 shares (7.6 – 6.1), falling to fifth.
- Cincinnati – Posting a +1.3 (4.9 – 6.2, November – December) which allowed it to inch up from #6 to #5, Hubbard adult contemporary WRRM “Warm 98” pours it on with a +4.2, taking it to #1 (10.4) and its strongest 6+-stat in one year (“Holiday” 2012 – 10.5). For the fifth consecutive monthly, Pillar of Fire-owned contemporary Christian WAKW “Star” has an upward trend (1.6 – 1.9 – 2.3 – 2.7 – 5.2 – 6.0). After jumping from #16 to #6 (November – December), it remains at #6. WLW (#2) ends its (6+) September – December mini-slide (13.7 – 12.3 – 9.8 – 9.0) with a +.6. Even so, it was not enough to stay at #1: The Clear Channel talk powerhouse is out of the top spot for the first time since this past March. Dropping by eight-tenths are Hubbard siblings (country) WUBE (7.3 – 6.5, #3) and WREW “Cincinnati’s Best Mix” (5.1 – 4.3, #9).
- Salt Lake City – Virtually any superlative regarding the “Holiday” 2013 performance of Bonneville adult contemporary KSFI “FM 100” would most likely be insufficient. For openers, it remains #1 for the fifth straight month, but the manner in which it did so approaches historic PPM proportions. It is imperative to remember this is not an under-radio market where shares can become bloated. In fact, 32 stations appear in print in the “Holiday” survey, yet “FM 100” boasts a stunning 19.3 (6+), which more than triples that of its talk sibling, #2 KSL (6.4). Further putting the 19.3 in perspective, “FM 100” had a solid 9.9 in December (6+), but it managed to swell that by another 9.4 shares. Meanwhile, several other market stations experienced survey-to-survey drop-offs of at least one-share. They included Clear Channel talk KNRS (6.3 – 4.7, #5, -1.6), its classic hits-oldies sibling KODJ (5.0 – 3.7, #8, -1.3), KLO hot AC KBZN (5.2 – 4.1, #6, -1.1), and Clear Channel hot AC KJMY (4.3 – 3.3, #11, -1.0).
- Las Vegas – In December, Clear Channel adult contemporary KSNE “Sunny 106.5” posted a +2.7 to 7.6, which trotted the station from fifth to first. All-Christmas music has another mega-winner with “Sunny,” which more than doubles its December gain (+6.6) to 14.2. Mirroring what we’ve seen in several other markets (such as Salt Lake City), the 14.2 is not only a station best for “Sunny” but the highest (6+) share recorded in Las Vegas’ PPM history. CBS Radio hot AC KMXB is off by -1.1 (6.8 – 5.7) and drops from second to third. Declining by nine-tenths are Beasley classic hits-oldies KKLZ (5.4 – 4.5, #5,) and co-owned adult hits KVGS (3.1 – 2.2, #17); KKLZ was -1.6 November – December.
- Orlando – Four of the market’s top eight stations (6+) are Clear Channel properties, including adult contemporary WMGF “Magic 107.7,” which more than doubles its December share (5.4 – 11.0) to rocket from seventh to first. Further noteworthy for “Magic” is that it came into the “Holiday” period with a -1.4, November – December; 11.0 is the station’s strongest 6+-number in one year (“Holiday” 2012 – 13.6). Notching a +1.4 is Cox Media Group urban AC WCFB (5.6 – 7.0, #5 in December to #3). Significant survey-to-survey declines include CBS Radio hot AC WOMX (5.6 – 4.0, -1.6, #5 to #11) and classic hits-oldies cluster-mate WOCL (6.9 – 5.9, -1.0, #2 to #4).
- Columbus – On the heels of a November – December +2.1 to 7.4, Clear Channel‘s WODC “Oldies 93.3” nearly doubles that gain with a +4.0 to climb from #3 to #1 (11.4). It curtails cluster-mate WNCI’s eight-month stay at the top, although the CHR manages to stay in double-digits (6+) for the tenth straight time (11.2 – 10.8). Independent contemporary Christian WCVO “The River” (#5) turns in a +1.3 to 5.0, its strongest showing since June, when it reached 5.6. There is a rare hefty December – “Holiday” gain by a rocker as North American‘s WRKZ “The Blitz” improves 3.7 – 4.8 (+1.1); it inches up from eighth to seventh. With a -1.7, Clear Channel country WCOL-FM (#2 to #3) ends three successive monthlies in double-digits (10.2 – 10.4 – 10.2 – 8.5).
Clear Channel Names ‘The Woody Show’ to Replace Kennedy at Alternative KYSR, Los Angeles. The change is set to take place on April 21 when “The Woody Show” featuring Woody, Ravey, Menace and Greg Gory takes over the 6:00 am to 10:00 am slot currently held down by Lisa Kennedy Montgomery’s “Music in the Morning with Kennedy” show. The station says in a statement, “The foursome are real life friends, who are having fun, raw, honest conversations about things happening in the world – they will reunite on “ALT 98.7” for the first time since 2009, when they were a top-rated morning show in San Francisco. Since then, Woody and Ravey have hosted the #1 morning show in St. Louis, while Menace and Gory each anchor separate successful shows in San Francisco. CCM+E vice president of programming Los Angeles Andrew Jeffries says, “’The Woody Show’ is here to wake the market up with their unique friendship, driven by a cast of characters coming from a diverse range of backgrounds all finding a common sense of humor, love of communicating with listeners and desire to entertain.”
Karter Returns to Chicago to Program WGCI-FM. Four-year Clear Channel San Francisco urban contemporary KMEL assistant program director/midday talent Kenard Karter (a.k.a. K2) will transfer to his Chicago hometown on March 3 to program co-owned urban AC WGCI-FM. Director of urban programming Derrick Brown comments, “I am thrilled Kenard is coming aboard to lead the WGCI-FM team. His record of success at KMEL is impressive and his competitive spirit is infectious. I could not be happier that Kenard is coming back home to Chicago to take WGCI-FM to its next level of success.” Karter remarks, “I am proud to have a proven track record of major market ratings success. I am a team player with a knack for innovation and collaboration, which I am excited to bring to Chicago. I am ready to accept the challenge of leading one of Clear Channel’s heritage urban brands as program director in my hometown.” Kenard’s previous Chicago background includes air personality/music director positions at both WGCI-FM and mainstream CHR sibling WKSC “Kiss FM.”
Wilks Awards Kennedy VP Stripes. At Wilks-owned KBEQ “Q-104,” Kansas City, program director Mike Kennedy is boosted to corporate vice president/country programming. Executive vice president of programming Jeff Sanders points out that Kennedy “has been programming KBEQ since 1992, and he has been part of the morning team since 2001. He comes with a wealth of programming knowledge and a very strong relationship with Nashville.” Kennedy comments, “I cannot tell you how excited I am to now have the challenge of working with, learning from, and growing our group of Wilks country stations. We have some bright, talented, and experienced teammates on our country stations. I cannot wait to do all I can to help us grow and move forward.” In addition to “Q-104” and Kansas City country sibling KFKF-FM “Country 94.1,” Kennedy will oversee KWOF “The Wolf,” Denver; WHOK “K-107.1,” Columbus; KWFP “The Wolf,” Reno, Nevada; and KLLL “Lubbock’s Country Leader,” Lubbock, Texas.
CBS RADIO Celebrates Detroit on WOMC-HD3 Channel. The channel is branded “Detroit’s Boulevard” and it’s found on the HD3 channel of CBS RADIO’s oldies WOMC. The station is a blend of older and current hits from Detroit artists including heritage acts such as Aretha Franklin and Marvin Gaye to Bob Seger and Madonna as well as current artists including Mayor Hawthorn, Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr., The Ready Set, Blue October, Mike Posner, Kid Rock, Eminem, and Jack White.
Norfolk Rhythmic CHR Just Says ‘No.’ There is at least one station that has had enough of Justin Bieber‘s questionable behavior and is doing something about it. The singer is facing charges of drunk driving, resisting arrest, driving without a valid license, and street racing. That has led Entercom Norfolk rhythmic CHR WNVZ “Z-104” to suspend all of Bieber’s music on the station effective immediately. Program director Mike Klein comments, “‘Z-104 is very disappointed with Justin Bieber’s recent choices. With his arrest, we felt the need to make a moral stand.” The action remains in effect until further notice. The station has initiated a poll on its website allowing listeners to express their opinion.
Fredericksburg Operator Free Lance-Star Publishing Company Files Chapter 11. The heritage publishing company and radio station operator located in Fredericksburg, Virginia has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection as it prepares for an ownership change – possibly putting the company in the hands of creditor Sandton Capital Partners. The company operates four radio stations – country WFLS, rhythmic CHR WVBX, classic rock WWUZ, and sports talk WNTX – in addition to a number of publications. It’s been owned by the Rowe family for the past 130 years and current publisher, Nick Cadwallender, says he expects the stations and the publications to continue to function in a way that will not negatively affect the station’s staffers, at least in the near term. The company has already reduced staff and made changes to try to comply with its loan covenant but efforts to secure new funding or a refinance have been unsuccessful, leaving the Chapter 11 filing the next move.
Nielsen’s ‘Connected Life Report’ Indicates Connected Car Becoming More Important. The results of a new study by Nielsen dubbed the “Connected Life Report” shows consumers buying new vehicles are increasingly aware of the connected car and for many it is an important feature in buying a new car. Nielsen says its study reveals “63% of connected car drivers said they looked for built-in features during the car-buying process. Among those who purchased connected cars, the features drivers said were important included internet-enabled navigation (79%), safety alerts (76%), vehicle diagnostics (74%), and entertainment connectivity such as voice controls for communications and streaming audio (80%).” When it comes to which connected car features were important to consumers, 42% stated that entertainment connectivity was “very important.” (Fifty-one percent said emergency connectivity was “very important” and 49% stated internet-enabled navigation was “very important.”)
WestwoodOne Presents ‘Backstage at the GRAMMYs.’ Continuing a tradition started decades ago, WestwoodOne announces it has struck a three-year deal with The Recording Academy that expands their partnership and means the exclusive backstage audio coverage from the 56th GRAMMY Awards will be heard on radio stations across the country. WestwoodOne states that new GRAMMY content has been created this year that brings together GRAMMY nominated artist and GRAMMY awarded artist, called “GRAMMY to GRAMMY.” Listeners can also expect exciting GRAMMY countdown shows, the Nomination Concert special, and other iconic GRAMMY moments in music. This year, WestwoodOne reports it is livening up the audio content and listener experience by hosting a Fresh Performance stage, sponsored by Wendy’s. Confirmed performers include Aloe Blacc and Austin Mahone. Local radio listeners can win a chance to attend this private performance at the WestwoodOne Backstage at the GRAMMYs event. In addition to offering listeners access to audio coverage of the live event, WestwoodOne will provide behind-the-scene interviews with current and previous GRAMMY nominees and winners that will be distributed through audio, digital and social platforms. These events will air on 140 radio stations across the country and 9 stations internationally. WestwoodOne COO Charles Steinhauer adds, “WestwoodOne is proud to extend our partnership with The GRAMMY Awards this year. The GRAMMYS are the pinnacle celebration of the power of sound through the artists and music that transcends all audiences and mediums. It’s an iconic brand and opportunity for marketers to extend their reach to an audience with tremendous influence and buying power.” The “Backstage at the GRAMMYs” syndicated radio show was co-created, co-produced and originally co-hosted by now-RadioInfo and TALKERS magazine publisher Michael Harrison (seen in this picture at right) and Los Angeles-based broadcaster Bill Moran (here at left). The show was first syndicated by Josh Feigenbaum‘s MJI Broadcasting and was later picked up by Norm Pattiz-led Westwood One. Harrison and Moran are pictured here interviewing a very young Melissa Etheridge (center).
Public Radio Chiefs Support FM Chip Push. The chief executive officers of both NPR and American Public Media co-authored an opinion piece in the public media trade mag Current.org in which they express support for the move to activate FM chips in smartphones. NPR acting president and CEO Paul Haaga and American Public Media CEO Jon McTaggart write that because of the public’s need to have access to information during emergencies, the need is critical. “Because of public radio’s role as a trusted media and information resource and an essential public-safety asset, we hope all stations will join us in calling upon the mobile phone industry to install and activate FM chips in all cellphones and smartphones.” The two ask public stations to do two things: sign their stations up for NextRadio so listeners already using the app can identify and listen to said stations; and encourage listeners to contact their cell carriers and request they install and activate FM chips in smartphones. Read the entire piece here.