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RAJAR Results: Q3 2017

It’s another strong quarter for radio according to RAJAR’s Q3 figures. 90% of UK adults are tuning into their radios every week - that’s 49.1 million people, with a combined weekly listening time of over 1 billion hours (21.3 hours of live radio per week on average). Moreover, that’s 900,000 more adults listening weekly than in Q3 last year.

This quarter paints a good result for commercial radio as well, with figures showing that 706,000 more people each week are listening to commercial radio than BBC stations.

National Brands

Good news for Heart, who remain the biggest commercial radio brand in the UK. They have 9.487m listeners every week, quite a few of whom are tuning into Heart 80s; the digital station is up 27.5% quarter on quarter.

Radio X is reaching 1.523m people, up by a third on its performance this time last year, while LBC has news worth mentioning: its stations are up 15.7% over the year (to 2.084m).

The numbers for other national brands are looking healthy: Capital is reaching 8.572m, Kiss 5.686m, Smooth 5.674m, Classic FM 5.433m, and Magic 3.747m.

The results are not absolutely positive for Absolute, who have seen a drop of 6.9% so far this year (to 2.460m listeners).

London Stations

Capital is still ruling the capital; it remains the biggest commercial station in London, while Capital London breakfast, hosted by Roman Kemp, has gained listeners again. The show now reaches 1.115m listeners per week, compared with last year’s Q3 figure of 1.041m.

LBC may no longer stand for London’s Biggest Conversation, but it is the capital’s biggest station on share.

London’s second largest commercial breakfast show is Kiss’s Rickie, Melvin & Charlie (900,000 listeners), followed by Nick Ferrari on LBC (716,000), and Magic (659,000). 

The top 5 commercial stations in London based on reach in Q3/2017 are:

1. Capital 2.125m

2. Kiss 1.869m

3. Magic 1.541m

4. Heart 1.515m

5. LBC 1.110m


The top 5 London commercial stations based on share in Q3/2017 are:

1. LBC 5.8%

2. Kiss 5.5%

3. Capital 5.2%

4. Magic 3.6%

5. Heart 3.5%

Digital Radio

Overall, 61% of the UK population are listening to digital radio every week.

Radio listening via digital platforms now has a 48.8% share of all listening (a figure that’s up 8%  year on year). Breaking this down, DAB has 35.9% of share, online/app has 8.0%, and Digital TV has 4.9%.

In a result for the Kisstory books, Kisstory has a record reach; 1.823m listeners are making it the biggest national commercial digital station.

Virgin Radio also scores a record high of 556,000 weekly listeners (up from 345,000 this time last year); that’s an increase by 61.2% year on year. Heart 80s’ second ever set of results are also positive, as it tips over a million listeners (1.086m), and talkSPORT 2’s reach is up, growing over a third in the last year.

However, talkRADIO is down to 256,000 listeners a week (from 304,000 last year, a 15.8% drop year on year).

Regional Brands

There are plenty of ups and downs for the regional stations.

Great news for Cool FM, Gem 106 and Downtown Country: they’re all seeing their highest ever listener figures.

Not as great news for Metro Radio however, with their lowest numbers ever (279,000 listeners).

Key 103 is down this quarter, but up year on year (366,000 weekly listeners compared to 356,000 last year). Meanwhile, Capital Yorkshire has dipped under a million listeners for only the second time in eight years.

The Breeze - rebranded from JACK fm Berkshire - has added an extra thousand listeners this quarter, now boasting 25,000 (and it’s up year-on-year from 18,000 in Q3, 2016). But Capital Liverpool - rebranded from Juice - continues to drop (158,000, compared with 239,000 last year).

There’s now only a gap of 7,000 between Radio Aire and Radio Aire 2, who have 79,000 and 72,000 listeners respectively.

To read more on the RAJAR results click here.

To get a more in depth insight into the radio market and discover how your brand can take advantage of the listening population, get in touch with the Radio Results team here.

Visit us next week to discover more top audio related stories!