The number of Wireless listening hours climbed 13% in the last year
All national stations have seen listening hours and reach grow compared to the previous quarter
Virgin Radio sees highest listening hours ever, ahead of Chris Evans moving over from BBC Radio 2
talkSPORT 2’s audience has grown by 17% (QonQ) and listening hours by 23% (QonQ) following investment in sports rights--including the Sri Lanka test cricket series
talkRADIO’s reach increased by 16% (QonQ) and its listening hours grew 24% (QonQ), as it continues to invest in new on-air talent
Year on year, local stations have seen reach increase by 19% and total hours by 22%
The latest round of RAJAR results - covering July to December 2018 - show that Wireless’ investment into talent and sports rights continues to drive growth in audience and listening hours.
Compared to last quarter, Wireless national stations grew listening hours by 4% to 23.7m, while reach is up 3% (QonQ), with 3.74m adults now tuning in every week.
Over the past year, the number of listening hours across all Wireless stations combined has climbed 13%. The group now commands an audience of 4.8m listeners every week, who tune in for over 33.3m hours.
Following the announcement that Chris Evans would be joining Virgin Radio in September, the number of listeners increased by 8% compared to the previous quarter, and the station recorded its highest listening hours ever (1.7m per week).
After winning exclusive rights to England cricket’s Sri Lanka tour, talkSPORT 2’s audience has grown 17% (QonQ) to 326k and people are listening for longer, with listening hours up by 23% in the last six months compared to the last quarter.
talkSPORT recently announced that it had won exclusive cricket rights for England’s tour of India 2020/21 and exclusive rights for the highly anticipated grudge match between James DeGale and Chris Eubank Jr later this month.
As the station’s football coverage continues to grow in popularity, the number of listeners to Saturday afternoon shows increased by 9% compared to the last quarter. During the same period, the station grew its audience of young listeners (15-24 year-olds) by 11%. Alan Brazil’s breakfast show has also seen continued success, with its audience increasing by 6% compared to last year.
Following extensive Brexit coverage, which saw the team stationed on College Green, and the addition of two new presenters, Jeremy Kyle and Matthew Wright, talkRADIO’s reach increased by 16% and its listening hours grew 24% compared to the last quarter.
The Jeremy Kyle Radio Show (1-4pm on Saturdays), which launched in August and The Matthew Wright Show (weekdays 1-4pm), which launched in September, boosted listener numbers in their timeslots by 26% and 22% respectively compared to the previous quarter.
In the last year, talkRADIO’s audience has grown by 27% to 302k listeners every week
Wireless’ local stations have also turned in a winning performance. The number of listeners has grown 19% in the last year to reach 1.17m. Listeners are also tuning in for longer, with hours listened growing 22%.
Scott Taunton, Wireless CEO, welcoming the latest set of RAJARs said: “Wireless’ growth in listening hours and reach by 13% and 4% respectively is a significant achievement. These results reflect the talent and dedication of teams right across the business.
“The Chris Evans Breakfast Show is already the story of the year in the UK’s radio industry, and Wireless is set to continue to drive growth across its portfolio.”