Monday, July 16, 2007

And the results are in ...

The Bureau of Broadcast Measurement has just released their S2 2007 Top-line market share data covering the period April 16 - June 10 2007. You can find the report here. The report provides market share data, expressed as a percentage of total hours tuned to all radio, for the radio stations in major markets: Montreal, Quebec, Ottawa/Gatineau, Toronto, Hamilton, Winnipeg, Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver. The data covers the period Monday to Sunday from 5:00 AM to 1:00 AM.

Now, this is not that useful to a member of the general public who is interested in the market share for a particular radio station in the evening, for example. However, this is the only report that is released to the public and so it will have to suffice. On the BBM web site it states that:

To become a full, voting member, you must be a radio or television broadcaster, an advertiser, advertising agency, or media buying house. Associate (non-voting) memberships are available to other interested parties, such as industry associations, consultants, government organizations, and U.S. broadcasters.

Each membership category warrants a different range of entitlements. Entitlements may include access to measured diary/meter data, software, data books, area/cell guides, population estimates, reach book, market reports, home market reports, specialty (sp) language reports, BBM newsletters, and a members-only Website.

I expect that a full member is entitled to market share data, by time period, for each radio station in each major market, thus allowing a radio station executive to determine, for example, whether his or her programming decisons (such as the recent changes to the CBC Radio Two evening schedule) have resulted in an increase or decrease in market share.

I've compared the market share data for the CBC Radio Two stations in the markets covered by this survey for S2 2007 with the same period last year (S2 2006) and found the following changes in market share:

Ottawa: down 0.6% (from a 5.2% market share to a 4.6% market share)
Toronto: down 0.6%
Montreal: down 0.4%
Winnipeg: up 0.6%
Calgary: down 1.4%
Edmonton: up 2.8%
Vancouver: up 0.6%

As I mention above, since this data covers the entire period from 5:00 AM to 1:00 AM one can not tell whether the new CBC Radio Two evening schedule is a resounding success or a dismal failure. Personally, I suspect the latter judging from the comments that I have seen on the "Petition to Restore CBC Radio Two", the "Petition to Return Classical Music to CBC Radio Two" and in the comments left on the Inside the CBC blog.

CBC Radio management has commented on the most recent market share results here, but their transparency, as usual, leaves much to be desired. I encourage CBC Radio management to publicize the market share data for the CBC Radio Two stations during the 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM, 8:00 PM to 10:00 PM and 10:00 PM to midnight time slots. If they are confident in the success of their new evening programming then they should share this market data with the public!

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