Audience Availability

How do we get more listening hours? Well, you have to fish where the fishes are. An option is to target the audience who listen to the most radio, in the place they listen to the most radio. So, here’s a Top 18 – hours (millions) consumed by different demos in different places.

1 Adults 65+ At Home                                  229,082
2 Adults 55-64 At Home                                  123,982
3 Adults 45-54 At Home                                  111,127
4 Adults 35-44 At Home                                    80,857
5 Adults 25-34 At Home                                    61,193
6 Adults 15-24 At Home                                    60,029
7 Adults 45-54 In A Car/Van/Lorry                                    51,453
8 Adults 35-44 In A Car/Van/Lorry                                    42,777
9 Adults 25-34 In A Car/Van/Lorry                                    40,143
10 Adults 25-34 At Work                                    37,874
11 Adults 35-44 At Work                                    35,937
12 Adults 45-54 At Work                                    35,123
13 Adults 55-64 In A Car/Van/Lorry                                    30,448
14 Adults 15-24 At Work                                    26,816
15 Adults 15-24 In A Car/Van/Lorry                                    22,534
16 Adults 65+ In A Car/Van/Lorry                                    20,327
17 Adults 55-64 At Work/Elsewhere                                    17,014
18 Adults 65+ At Work/Elsewhere                                      4,913

Those top 3, 45 and over, at home, are responsible for nearly half of all radio listening.

Nevermind “at work listening”, your positioner should be “at home, dear”.


6 thoughts on “Audience Availability”

  1. Good data, but – those 45+ at-home listeners are likely to be very entrenched Radio 2/3/4 or BBC Local listeners, particularly the big chunk of 65+’s. No matter what you throw out on the dial at them, they’re unlikely to tune away from their preferred listen. SAGA Radio fell foul of this…

  2. Matt a VERY clever piece of analysis – which I’m sure will gall all the stations chasing the ‘kids’ and ‘Debbie aged 29’.

    Already ‘radio’ is handling this large, older, home-based audience, but in a new way – the internet. Roger Day (who VERY ironically has never had a ‘lifetime achievement award’ despite nearly 50 years in UK radio) started UncoolRadio. And a team of former GEM-AM and Saga Radio staff created our station, where (just to show it CAN be done) we run 24/7 WITHOUT any advertising.

    Your stats here confirm what we are already knew ~ there is a HUGE audience, based at home, who just want (easy to create) radio of great songs, TRUE variety, easy nostalgic jingles and NO yap!

    “Radio Like It Used To Be”

  3. Andy, as Matt says Saga Radio did ‘quite well’. It could certainly have grown into a station with a broader (much larger) number of listeners than Smooth, which (in London particularly) is NOT doing ‘quite well’.

    The sale of Saga was completely governed by the HUGE amount paid for it. GMG had more funds than anyone else, so paid MORE. I would guess (I’m no financial expert) that in the light of subsequent events, mergers (and ratings) they overpaid by about 40%?

    The result was GREAT regional stations were destroyed, and replaced with an inferior, quasi-national one that itself is about to disappear in further mergers.

    In other words, the score to date is ‘money men’ 10, ‘radio people’ 0.

    The demise of Saga, over-seen by the appalling regulator acting under government guidance, saw the loss of the only radio group aimed at the HUGE 45+ year old audience. Something needs to CHANGE…..


  4. Certainly older audiences are available, and there are a growing number of listening hours in these demos.

    (See also slide 18 of this recent presentation)

    However, I wouldn’t totally dismiss “At Work” listening as an area to target as it’s shown a general increase in the last few years, while “At Home” listening has dipped. And “At Work” is one area where commercial really does have a significant advantage over the BBC. Less speech and more music might work in this context I guess.

    But the key question, as Matt notes, is how you make money. I think this has always been the difficulty that commercial operators have faced. It sometimes feels the advertising community believes that nobody will actually buy anything when they get older than 44.

  5. Very interesting data Matt. In areas where the local radio stations still offer a good mix of music + local news, such as here in parts of Yorkshire, then the local stations get good listening figures such as Yorkshire Coast Radio and Stray FM despite them having competition from the BBC and the quasi-national commercial networks.

Comments are closed.