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Commercial radio audience highest ever

The New Zealand Commercial Radio Industry released the S2 2021 GfK Radio Audience Data into the market today, showing Kiwi radio audiences at an all time high. 

More than 3.7 million New Zealanders were listening to radio weekly, with over 3.5 million of those listening to commercial radio stations – this equates to 78 percent of New Zealanders aged 10+, and an increase of approximately 46,600 people aged 10+ on Survey 1 2021.

On average listeners tune in for 15 hours 42 minutes of commercial radio each week.

“The survey once again shows just how many Kiwis are engaged with radio and its personalities on a weekly basis. This, coupled with TRB’s recent In One Ear research which demonstrates the effectiveness of the medium, gives advertisers confidence in trusting radio to deliver for them,” says Peter Richardson, General Manager at The Radio Bureau.

In the battle for the airwaves, MediaWorks has reached a record 54.7 percent share (up 1.1 percent on last survey), while NZME is at 34.4 percent (down 0.7). 

NZME CEO Michael Boggs says: “The radio industry continues to maintain a strong role in our local media mix – it’s more critical than ever for our stories to be told, and to be told by the very best broadcasters in Aotearoa. Commercial radio will continue to contribute the most engaging content for all New Zealanders, including for our audiences and commercial partners. 

Newstalk ZB continues its upward trajectory as New Zealand’s number one network, while The Breeze once again retained the top music station spot with 9.6 percent share and the most listeners of all commercial radio stations with a national weekly audience of 671,700 – an increase of almost 20,000.

In the battle for breakfast radio audiences, NZME wins across key audience groups with either the Newstalk ZB Mike Hosking Breakfast Show or ZM’s Fletch, Vaughan and Megan.

“ZM’s Fletch, Vaughan and Megan have further increased their lead as the number one music breakfast show across New Zealand. This is testament to the talent and hard work of the entire team,” says Mike McClun, Chief Content Officer at NZME.

“It’s also a great result for ZM’s Bree & Clint who are now number one in their Drive show slot for the all-important 18 – 39 and 25 – 54 year-old age groups.”

MediaWorks CEO & RBA Chair, Cam Wallace, says it’s fantastic to see radio listening remain resilient as New Zealand, and the radio industry, continues to move through Covid-19. 

“With borders still largely closed, localisation has never been more important. This survey clearly demonstrates the hunger Kiwis have for engaging and entertaining radio content, as well as the effectiveness of radio to drive results for advertisers.”

The Breeze host Robert Scott also has the number one music network drive show in New Zealand. 

The Edge is the number one station for people aged 10 to 24 and 18 to 39, and has the second largest audience of all commercial music radio stations, with 631,500 listeners.

Digital listening

NZME has also seen strong growth with digital listening on iHeartRadio, total listening hours now over 32 million for the first half of the year, an increase of nearly nine percent.

MediaWorks has seen more than 30 million streams of its audio content across its websites, rova, and other podcast platforms in the first six months of this year. The rova app has now reached more than 847,000 downloads.

See further analysis from TRB, here.

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