Survey 1 2003 figures released

Capital City ratings survey 1 for 2003 has been released this week. Use your refresh/reload button to get the latest version of this story as it is updated.

Click on the Nielsen Ratings tab in the left margin to get the latest overall figures as they are added. You can access detailed breakdowns (when available) by clicking the Nielsen Media Research logo.


Talk stations around the country benefited by the Iraq conflict this survey, strengthening talk formats in most markets as listeners sought information about a possible war. The result for talk stations is even more interesting during a summer survey, which would normally favour music listening. Cricket coverage on ABC Radio also benefited ABC stations in some cities.

Sydney –

2GB has claimed number one position in the Sydney market with a 1.5 share point increase, bringing the station to 11.7%. Alan Jones’ breakfast dominates that timeslot with 17.6 share points, ahead of second placed ABC702 breakfast (11.6) and third placed 2DAY FM Morning Crew (9.9). Ray Hadley’s Morning jumped 1.2 share points to 11.0, ahead of 2UE’s John Laws (8.5) but behind 2DAY FM’s morning slot (12.1). New dad Chris Smith gained 1.9 share points to 8.9% in 2GB afternoons, drive was up to 7.1% and evenings jumped 2.3 to 14.7%.

The biggest falls in the market were 2UE, which was down by 2.1, losing significant amounts of 40-54s and 55+ and 2MMM. All 2UE shifts were down, with the biggest falls being afternoons (down by 3.6) and drive (down by 3.0). John Laws’ morning fell 2.5 share points and Steve Price’s breakfast was down 1.6. The effect of Stan Zemanek returning to 2UE’s late nights is not yet clear – the overall evening timeslot was down (by 2.8), but not as much other shifts. Zemanek is on for three of the five hours in that timeslot. 2UE’s drop came mostly from a fall in Time Spent Listening.

Of the talk stations ABC702 had the biggest cume of 638,000 weekly listeners, followed by 2GB with 585,000 and 2UE with 516,000.

2MMM lost 1.5 share points, mostly in 18-24s, with a significant drop in mornings and dips across all shifts. The biggest gains were scored by 2CH (up 1.9), 2GB (up 1.5) and Mix 106.5 (up 1.2).

2DAY FM dropped slightly overall by 0.5 share points to 11.5%, ABC702 was in third place, up 0.3 to 9.0%. Nova sits in 4th place at 8.6% (down 0.2), followed by 2MMM on 7.6 (down 1.5), Mix 106.5 on 7.3% (up 1.2), WSFM on 7.2% (down 0.7), 2CH on 7.1% (up 1.9) and 2UE in 9th place on 6.3 (down 2.1). Stations which had changes in breakfast, Triple M, WS FM and 2DAY generally did not increase this survey.

Triple J fell by 0.2 to 4.3%, followed by Classic FM on 2.3% (up 0.3), Radio National on 2.3%, 2KY on 1.8%, NewsRadio on 1.7% and 2SM on 0.6%.

Perth –

Perth’s newest station, Nova 93.7 debuted at 10.8% in its first survey, causing a shake up in the market’s FM CHR stations and allowing Mix to edge further ahead. Nova was equal third score with ABC720. Ahead of Nova were Mix 94.5 in first place on 24.3% with 92.9 and 96FM in joint second place on 10.9%.

Nova scored best in the 18-24 demographic (30.8 share points) and also gathered good numbers in adjacent demographics 10-17 and 25-39. The new station scored well in the ‘at work’ dayparts, but was weaker at breakfast (8.1). Nova hit 92.9 and Triple J hardest, with both stations losing over 3 share points at breakfast and significant numbers overall. 92.9 was down 4.3 share points overall, while Triple J lost 3.2 overall.

6IX benefited from the market turbulence, gaining as a result of the struggle taking place on the FM band. Mix retained overall number one position with 24.3%, holding on to its older demographics and retaining number one position in all shifts.

6PR dropped 1.6 share points overall to 6th place, down to 7.8%, followed by 6IX on 6.5%, 6JJJ on 5.5%, Classic FM on 1.8%, 6RN on 1.7% and NewsRadio on 1.2%.

The demographic breakdowns of the Perth market show 92.9 winning 10 – 17s with 28.6%;
Nova 93.7 winning 18 – 24s with 30.8%; Mix 94.5 winning 25 – 39s with 26.6% and 40 – 54s with 39.2%; and 55+ won by ABC 720 on 25.0%.

Melbourne –

Talk stations were at number one and two position in Melbourne. 3AW claimed first place with 13.7% (up 2.1), scoring good gains in the 55+ demographic. All shifts were up, most notably drive (up 4.5), recently vacated by Stan Zemanek and now hosted by Derryn Hinch. Evenings also experienced a post-Zemanek lift, up by 4.6 share points.

Second placed ABC 774 had the second largest gain of the survey, up by 1.0 share points to 13.1% overall, picking up good amounts of listeners at night (up 3.0), and also in Red Symons’ breakfast, mornings, Lynne Haultain’s afternoons and weekends.

Triple M and 3MP were down most, 3MMM losing 1.0 overall to 7.4% and 3MP down 1.2 to %.

Fox was in third place with 11.5%, followed by Gold which had a good survey, coming in at number one in the 25-54 demographic with an overall share of 9.7% and an increase of 65,000 cume. Nova also scored 9.7%, followed by 3MMM on 7.4%, Mix on 6.3% and Magic on 6.1%. Triple J scored 4.2%, followed by Radio National on 2.5%, 3MP on 2.3%, Classic FM on 1.8 and Sport 927 on 1.7%. NewsRadio was 1.6 and 3AK was on 1.5%.

Brisbane –

In Brisbane B105 was down by 2.0 share points, but still retained 1st position on 16.2%, but closing the gap for second place is stable mate MMM, up 1.5 to 14.0%. 4KQ gained the biggest increase of the survey, up 2.4 to 10.9 while 4BC also increased, up 1.2 to 9.5%.

New 97.3 came down from its strong position a little, dropping 0.5 to 12.4%, with good increases in the younger demos, but a slight drop in the 25-39 age group. Breakfast and weekends lost share for New 97.3, while other shifts were steady.

ABC612 was down 0.6 to 9.0%, against the ABC trend in most other states, after significant changes to the breakfast and morning shifts. Kirsten MacGregor, who replaced Susan Mitchell, dropped 2.1 share points in the morning slot.

4BH dropped 1.0 to 7.2%, Triple J dropped 0.3 to 6.5%, Radio National scored 2.8%, Classic FM came in at 2.3%, and NewsRadio was 1.5%.

Adelaide –

In the Adelaide market SAFM continued its dominance with 22.9%, down only 0.2 share points from last survey. In second place was 5MMM, which gained 1.1 to 13.9%, followed by 5AA on 13.6%.

5AA and Mix were hardest hit by the ABC’s good increase this survey. 5AA, which has been steadily gaining over the last few surveys, dropped 3.4 share points this time around to 13.6%, while Mix 102.3 was down 3.1 to 11.3%, both losing older listeners. 5AA lost most in breakfast and drive, while lost most listeners in the afternoon, evenings and weekends.

ABC891 was up by 3.3 share points to 10.7%, gaining 55+ listeners, particularly at breakfast.

5JJJ was up 0.5 to 8.7%, followed by 5DN on 4.4% (down 0.9), Classic FM on 2.9% (up 0.2), Radio National on 1.9% and NewsRadio on 1.7%.


Nova 93.7 Perth

Nova 93.7 General Manager Gary Roberts said: “Nova 93.7 has made a stunning debut. Perth has embraced the station that sounds different.”

“In just 10 weeks, Nova 93.7 has gone from zero to 318,000 different listeners each week. In its very first survey Nova 93.7 is No.1 18 – 34 year olds.”

96FM Perth

Steve Fitton from 96FM told radioinfo: “We pulled up well in the face of Nova’s debut, and we are proud of our little station. We work very hard with little in the way of resources, except hard work and a desire to win.”


Austereo stations “remain Australia’s favourite music stations,” rating No. 1 FM in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth according to Group Managing Director Brad March.

The first AC Nielsen survey for 2003 also shows Austereo stations around the country are “No. 1 in the industry’s key revenue demographic of 25 – 39 year old listeners.”

The results mean 2DAY FM is the No. 1 music station in Sydney for the 9th consecutive survey, and FOX FM is Melbourne’s No. 1 music station for the 6th consecutive time.

March told radioinfo: “These are great results given the last few months have been extremely competitive in the Australian radio industry. Obviously, international events have seen a lot of interest in the news. There has also been an extremely high level of marketing and promotional activity by talk and other music stations. In this climate, the Austereo stations have performed very well to maintain their leadership.”

The interest in news especially saw the Triple M stations in both Sydney and Melbourne slide. “We are still fine-tuning these stations and for that reason we didn’t schedule any promotional activity for the start of the year, and in the ultra-competitive environment which developed it resulted in both stations being squeezed a bit. It will only be temporary … the Triple M brand is too strong.”

In Perth, despite a new entrant, Austereo’s MIX 94.5 increased its overall lead to 24.3% while 92.9 holds equal 2nd place overall in a very tight market.

“As expected a lot of people are sampling the new Perth station on the back of massive launch marketing as we saw in Sydney and Melbourne. It will take a while for the market there to settle down, but these results are positive,” said March.

Triple M’s new “Freq Club” in Brisbane is paying dividends. The frequent listener club helping the station gain 1.5% overall, lifting it to 2nd in the market behind Austereo sister station B105 FM.

In Adelaide, Austereo stations have claimed the two top spots overall. SA FM leads the way with 22.9% while Triple M has secured 2nd spot with 13.9%.


A delighted George Buschman slipped away from the 2GB celebrations early to speak to radioinfo and get a bit more work done. “It’s a big day, I’ve still got a lot to do.”

He told radioinfo: “We set out to win this survey and it’s happened. We had a clear and succinct plan – we brought Alan back earlier than he has ever come back before, we had a sensational promotion and it gave us great prominence. It’s paid off.”

“It doesn’t get much better than this – not only to have beaten 2UE once with 2GB, but twice, also with 2CH is a good feeling. There have been some strange statements coming out of the Southern Cross camp lately, Tony Bell said Price would beat Jones. Clearly he was wrong – losing Jones was their biggest mistake.”

ABC702 Sydney

702 ABC Sydney “continues to perform well in the Sydney radio market with another strong and consistent result to kick off 2003,” according to Station Manager Roger Summerill.

Angela Catterns’ BREAKFAST program has “shot up to number 2 overall with an 11.6% share.”

702 breakfast reaches more Sydney people than any of the other talk radio stations in the same time slot, with 638,000 people tuning in each morning between 5.30am and 9.00am. Rival station 2GB’s reach was 585,000 whilst 2UE came in with 516,000.

Another “big winner for 702” is Richard Glover’s DRIVE program. With 295,000 listeners each week, Glover has a share of 8.5%, ahead of 2GB at 8.1% and long time rival Mike Carlton at 2UE whose share came in at 5.7%.

The station is also number one in the 40-54 demographic, 216,000 people listening each week. The station’s share is 13.4% compared with 2WS at 13.1%.

Station Manager Roger Summerill told radioinfo: “Although ratings are not the be all and end all for the station, it is gratifying that 702 ABC Sydney is such a consistent performer in Sydney radio… The station’s success is due to the teamwork of all the 702 ABC Sydney team and the contribution made by so many in the ABC including ABC Radio News, Current Affairs and Sport.”

“The 702 team is a group of exceptionally well talented people both on and off air who have a passion for bringing Sydney listeners the very best in radio talk programming every day. That’s the reason that the station consistently rates so well,” said Summerill.

Gold 104 Melbourne

For the first time in a decade GOLD104 has “topped the adult ratings position gaining listeners from all other radio stations across Melbourne.”

The Grubby and Dee Dee breakfast show “tightened it strangle hold in the competitive market of adult breakfast by securing the number one position in 25-54 year old increasing the distance between themselves and their major competitors.”

ARN’s CEO – Bob Longwell is “ecstatic” with the result out of Melbourne. “Steve Smith (General Manager) and his team, in particular his Program Director Dave Smith have tapped in to and delivered on their promise of good times and great classic hits, unlike any other radio station in Melbourne.”

Dave Smith told radioinfo: “Another great result from Melbourne’s most recognized breakfast duo ‘Grubby and Dee Dee’. We have all been working incredibly hard to achieve this result (No. 1 25-54) in survey one 2003. We will continue to improve the listening experience and build on this result.”

The timing is good for ARN which has recently launched the Wilbur Wilde Classic Café nationally.

Mix 101.1 Melbourne

MIX101.1 “topped 700,000 listeners in survey one 2003 with an extra 65,000 people coming on board” over the survey period.

MIX101.1’s new breakfast show with Loz, Michelle and Des has shown a “promising start with the breakfast time slot increasing its share with all people 25-44 year olds.”

Program Director Dean Pickering told radioinfo: “This result proves that the music on MIX101.1 is connecting with the stations core target of 25-44 year olds. I am particularly excited about the coming year and the continued growth of our new breakfast show.”

General Manager Steve Smith said: “Survey one 2003 saw many Melbourne radio stations supporting their on-air line up and music format with considerable marketing campaigns. I am encouraged by the stand-alone result of the new breakfast team. Without marketing support, Loz, Michelle and Des have shown their brand of breakfast radio has strong initial appeal to the Melbourne market.”

Nova 100 Melbourne

Nova 100 Melbourne has begun survey no. 1, 2003 as “the number one radio station for those aged between 18 and 39 (just).”

“In a very competitive commercial radio landscape Nova 100 held the position it won in five out of eight surveys last year in our target demographic of 18 to 39,” according to General Manager, Fiona Cameron.

“While the teens went elsewhere, Nova 100 still dominates the twenty something audience.”

“3AW and the ABC (774) should be congratulated for their achievement in a result that usually reflects younger listening patterns. Undoubtedly world events contributed to the strong results from the older skewed radio stations,” said Cameron.

Nova 969 Sydney

Nova 96.9fm is “really rapt to announce it is now the #2 FM radio station in Sydney!”

General Manager Mandi Wicks told radioinfo: “When Nova 96.9fm launched nearly two years ago, it quickly established itself as the #3 FM station in Sydney. Today, it has taken the next step by securing an 8.6 share in the first survey result for 2003.”

“We are extremely excited to be a clear #2 FM during such changing times in the radio industry,” said Wicks. “Nova 96.9 is #2 FM in breakfast, thanks to Merrick and Rosso, and we are #2 FM in mornings, drive and evenings.”

“It’s a perfect way to kick off 2003 and we want to thank Sydney radio listeners for getting us to #2 FM so quickly,” said Nova 96.9fm Program Director Scott Muller.


Talk 1116 Brisbane’s 4BC has “achieved an outstanding result in the first AC Nielsen ratings survey for 2003, with John Miller and Ross Davie attracting the station’s highest breakfast audience in 12 years,” according to General Manager David McDonald.

Talk breakfast team John and Ross, jumped from a 9.7 share to 11.9 (listeners aged 10+). The pair are Number One for listeners aged 30+.

The Survey One results, for the four weeks from January 19-February 15, also show “night-host Ian Maurice blitzing Brisbane radio, leaping ahead to be the highest-rating night show.” His audience in the 8pm-midnight slot went from 8.6 to 16.4.

Other positive news came from Brian Bury (noon-3pm) who is now the number one afternoon talk host in Brisbane, Sports Today with Greg Cary (6-8pm) which rose from 1.5 and weekends which rose from 6.1 to 9.2 (the best figure in at least seven years).

4BC is Number One on weekdays in its 40+target audience, and Number One for time spent listening –16 hours and 48 minutes a week – up from 13 hours 45 minutes (the highest time spent listening of all stations in Australia).

McDonald told radioinfo: “This result stems from our commitment to be the Brisbane Community’s primary source of news and entertainment. In Survey One, this was evidenced by our coverage of the Shane Warne drugs scandal, our troop deployments to the Middle East and anti-war rallies, a new leader for the Queensland National Party, the Columbia explosion, the Waterfall train disaster in NSW and the Canberra bushfires… The ‘book-end’ results – breakfast and evenings – were extremely pleasing, particularly Ian Maurice’s Number One at night.”

Email comments and press releases to radioinfo or fax 02 9817 3300.