This week's episode is available for download HERE, and for listening on the listen icon.
This week's radio segment tackled IREX Jordan's Media survey, and particularly the Radio Section of the survey about Jordan Radio Ratings for the year 2008.
I have tackled in a post last year this time IREX Jordan's survey for the Jordanian Radio Ratings for the year 2007.
1st of all, to make things clear, the study considers to survey results:
Listenership for a period of 30 days from the survey: This would show the general listenership for radio, and what the surveyed had listened to within month.
Listenership for a period of 1 days prior to the survey: This would show the loyalty of listening to radio or to a specific radio station.
On the general level, and surprisingly, the radio listenership regardless of the station listened to, has DROPPED in 2008! regardless of the fact that the number of radio stations and frequencies covering the kingdom with radio transmission had increased! As 45.9% used to listen on daily basis to radio in 2007, the number has dropped to 43.7% only in 2008! and amazingly more, the big drop was in the youth of ages 15-29, from which less than 45.9% are listening to radio now, after the listenership percentage was 54.3% last year among them!
An almost 8.5% drop among the group mostly targeted on in our Jordanian radio stations. Are the Jordanian youth getting board of the copycats among Jordanian Radio Stations, where creativity seems to be stopping, and where most of the radio stations just trying to copy each other with a show or 2 on the air, and leave the rest to computers randomly shuffling music that you can heard on several other competitive radio station, or simply, pirated from the internet and played on your car radio or headset using an MP3 player, nothing more, nothing less.
Aren't Jordanian Radio stations thinking seriously about MP3 players, MP3 car modulators, Internet radio, and even TV and DVDs as competitors?! If they aren't then ... WRONG ANSWER! THINK AGAIN .... competition is not only about what other radio stations are playing or doing, and its not only about attracting another stations' listeners... its more over to getting those who don't listen to radio, never did, or quited doing so, back to listen to the airwaves through your radio station. Otherwise, we will just have 100 radio stations with 10% of the population listening to them! And out of a sudden we will have only 5 radio stations owned by the government on the airwaves after the rest of them get shut down! Not a happy ending in my imagination!
For the time being, the sector is still in a good shape, and the best in the Jordanian media scene with 67.8% of listenership within 30 days from the survey, much more exceeding newspapers (30.45%), magazines(8.45%).
The study included this year the way & place of listening to radio. One of the interesting things was that the study showed that just under 20% of the people listen to radio through Mobile phones that have FM receivers. The majority of those (over 60%) are youth, mostly school or university students, as this is their primary entertainment mean while being on the way from and to their universities/schools, or between the classes. On the other hand, listening to Jordanian radio stations via the internet didn't exceed 6.6%, as online broadcasting is more used by Jordanian abroad that jordnaians in jordan who can receive the stations via the FM. As for places where radio is mostly listen to, home was the biggest rate with 55.2% (with a big rate of house wives) followed by cars with just under 35%, at work 7.6% and 2.6% while moving by bus.
Before starting to review the radio ratings. And since there has been some debate about this study with regards to the written media and online media. And from my own point of view, i don't have any comments on it as far as the results are concerned, and i think the results show up a real view for the situation of the Jordanian airwaves. But i rather have some comments related to the “Radio Industry knowledge”!
1st of all, The study, or the people behind it, seem to have forgotten some radio stations! Sunny 105.1 FM wasn't mentioned though it was 7 months old at the time of the survey, nor Hawa Amman Radio (The GAM's radio) which has been on air for the same period. Also, both Yarmouk FM and Sawt New Maan weren't either mentioned nor given a rate though the study covered all Jordanian cities including Maan and Irbid! Even if some of those radio stations would have got 0.0% (which is impossible I guess!), they should have been mentioned with this result..
Also, the names of some radio stations or frequencies got some mistakes, just like Radio Al-Balad, which is still mentioned in the study as AmmanNet FM, and Sawt Al-Madina, whose frequency is 88.7 FM and not 88.5 FM (which was just a testing frequency before the official lunch of the station).
And not to forget, the stations belonging to Radio Jordan Broadcasting Corporation are a bit messed up. So apart from Amman FM, The Main Program is put in the survey as Jordan AM and Jordan FM 88 Mhz, which is actually the same radio station (as the main program), and it has AM frequencies as well as FM frequencies, and the FM frequencies in Amman for the Main Program of Radio Jordan Broadcasting has been changed to 90.0 FM and 106.7 FM for over a year now, and Amman FM is being broadcasted on 88.0 FM as 99.0 FM.
Anyway, here are the rating results according to the survey. Followed by some of my comments on them.
Radio Ratings Results for a period of 30 days from the survey:
1.Fann FM (49.5 %)
2.Quran Radio (44.9 % )
3.Amman FM (31.4 %)
4.Radio Amen FM (25.9 %)
5.Radio Rotana (25.3 %)
6.Hayat FM (18.0 %)
7.Radio Jordan Broadcasting – The Main Program (17.8 %)
8.Mazaj FM (14.5 %)
9.Sawt Al-Ghad (8.4 %)
10.Melody FM (7.5 %)
11.Watan FM (7.5 %)
12.Radio Sawt Al-Madina (5.2 %)
13.Radio Jordan English Service - 96.3 FM (3.1 %)
14.Radio Al-Balad (3.1 %)
15.Radio Farah Al-Nas (2.9 %)
16.Radio Jordan Broadcasting, The Main Program, through the FM (2.6 %)
17.Ayyam FM (2.4 %)
18.Mood FM (1.8 %)
19.Play FM (1.8 %)
20.Ahlen FM (1.8 %)
21.Beat FM (1.6 %)
22.Energy FM (0.9 %)
23.Spin FM (0.8 %)
Radio Ratings Results for the day prior to the survey: (Loyalty Ratings)
1.Fann FM (23.1 %)
2.Quran Radio (19.7 % )
3.Radio Amen FM (9.5 %)
4.Radio Rotana (9.3 %)
5.Amman FM (9.1 %)
6.Radio Jordan Broadcasting – The Main Program (7.0 %)
7.Hayat FM (5.1 %)
8.Mazaj FM (4.9 %)
9.Melody FM (2.1 %)
10.Radio Sawt Al-Madina (1.9 %)
11.Watan FM (1.8 %)
12.Radio Sawt Al-Madina (1.3 %)
13.Radio Jordan English Service - 96.3 FM (1.3 %)
14.Radio Jordan Broadcasting, The Main Program, through the FM (1.0 %)
15.Radio Al-Balad (0.8 %)
16.Radio Farah Al-Nas (0.8 %)
17.Play FM (0.8 %)
18.Beat FM (0.8 %)
19.Ayyam FM (0.7 %)
20.Mood FM (0.6 %)
21.Energy FM (0.5 %)
22.Spin FM (0.4 %)
23.Ahlen FM (0.4 %)
Fann FM is still on TOP! And is still getting advantage of the full coverage through its 11 frequencies to beat even the official state owned radio station. And Quran FM (with all its 3 local frequencies) is still second, regardless of the fact that Hayat FM (the only private religious radio) is trying to attract many listeners with its variety religious programs along with quran and ad'ieah, but despite the fact Hayat FM's listenership increased, its still less the quarter from Quran FM.
With a big increase from last year, Radio Amen FM is pretty notable now on the scene, the good programming according to the station's objectives, as well as the opening of 2 new frequencies were much of a help in having this big rating. And all of us know how much this station is famous against the taxi and bus drivers, since its becoming their road assistant on the ways around jordan.
The Jordanian Broadcasting Corporation's radio stations are still in a good shape. So Amman FM for example is still a big competitor against commercial FM stations. And Radio Jordan Broadcasting – The Main Program is still with the same ratings from last year (when adding both FM and AM ratings), and is still doing pretty well in the early morning hours.
On the other hand, when looking at English speaking / western music radio stations, we can notice how low ratings they have, despite all the competition they have between them, but even Radio Jordan – English Service is doing better than them with way too much! Yes! 4 CHR radios and 2 AC Radios as well as Ahlen FM (which went off earlier this year), couldn't any of them get even close enough to RJ 96.3 FM. This might show that the re-programming and re-orientation of Radio Jordan English Service was much of a good step (though its not yet as complete as it should be). But! There you go! They have beaten our fancy CHR radios! And is doing even better than some Arabic radio station.
But Anyway, those commercial english speaking radio stations are doing much better this year than the year before, even with double or more than last year's ratings on the “loyalty rating scale”. Which might mean that those stations are attracting people either from those listening to Arabic stations or from totally non-radio fan people to listen to them. Which is pretty good!
Play FM and Beat FM are competing hardly on top of the CHR radio rating when it comes to daily listeners to them, and they have even beaten Mood FM, which was beating both of them last year. But an interesting observation is that Ahlen FM had as high monthly rating as Play and Mood FM! And was doing pretty much well to shutdown several weeks ago!!! though it didn't had that much loyal listeners.
Taking a look over the ratings of the stations lunched in 2008 (& mentioned in the survey) for a period of 30 days prior (since you can't judge they have gathered enough loyal listeners, especially that some of them were lunched just 2 months before the survey) . [Farah Al-Nas, Ayyam FM, Energy FM, Spin FM] ... I consider them doing pretty good! And with good potentials to raise to better ratings during 2009.
Another interesting chart that can be found in the survey is this ...
You can just see how the pattern of attracting listeners change along the day.
Notice how Radio Jordan Broadcasting – Main Service and Fann FM are attracting most of their listeners in the morning. And how during housewives peak listenership stations that have shows in those times like Amman FM, Hayat FM, Quran Radio, Sawt Al-Ghad are attracting this type of listeners who are making more than half of the listeners at this time in the day. (a good re-thinking point for those stations thinking they are attracting housewives and females in generals, while having the 10 AM – 3 PM time slot empty!). Notice also how the changes in the evening hours (the preferred listening hours for youth according to this survey, as over 43-51% from the listeners after 6 PM are under 24!) turn to be concentrated on Melody, Sawt Al-Ghad and Mazaj FM. Yet another message for the stations trying to attract youth, and with empty programming or “let the computer shuffle the music” after 6 PM policies ... while those times are mainly considered study times for students in schools or on campus, those times are preferred by them for listening to the radio. Things get interesting enough when seeing in this survey that those 3 stations for example are doing better in the overnight period (9 PM – 6 AM) than the drive back period (in which 2 of them have extensively famous shows! ).