RTÉ radio increases share of audience


RTÉ CONTINUES to dominate daytime radio, claiming nine out of the top 10 most listened-to shows along with increases in audiences for many of its main presenters, according to the latest radio listenership figures.

The top nine shows are all broadcast by RTÉ, and seven of these grew their audiences, the survey by JNLR/TNSmrbi shows.

Joe Duffy, Marian Finucane, Ryan Tubridy and Pat Kenny all recorded increases in listenership, as did the News at One and Playback.

The keenly-contested teatime slot once again went RTÉ's way, with Drivetime fronted by Mary Wilson recording 221,000 listeners, followed by Today FM's The Last Word presented by Matt Cooper, with 216,000 listeners. The Right Hook, presented by George Hook on Newstalk, claimed 95,000 listeners. However, all three programmes lost listeners - Wilson's show was down 2,000, Cooper's 4,000 and Hook's 2,000.

On 2FM, Gerry Ryan saw his audience fall by 17,000, to 325,000, thereby more than wiping out a gain of 14,000 in the last survey.

Morning Ireland lost 5,000 listeners, bringing its audience to 432,000, but it remains the most listened-to programme on Irish radio.

The biggest increase was recorded by Marian Finucane, whose Saturday morning show saw its audience grow by 14,000 to 323,000. Ms Finucane's Sunday programme has 253,000 listeners, up 2,000 on the last survey.

RTÉ Radio managing director Adrian Moynes said the figures showed the station continued to perform well in spite of increased competition in the last year.

"It's a roll-call of success, with big names attracting big audiences at prime times on weekdays and at weekends," he said.

The survey covers the period July 2007-June 2008, and comparisons are made with the previous survey for the period April 2007-March 2008.

Pat Kenny, whose audience had fallen in the last survey, added another 13,000 listeners to bring his audience to 291,000.

After Morning Ireland, the most listened-to programme is Liveline, presented by Joe Duffy; it added another 5,000 listeners to bring its audience to 368,000.

Once again, the only non-RTÉ programme in the top 10 is Ray D'Arcy's morning show on Today FM; it occupies 10th spot with an audience of 254,000, up 2,000.

The survey shows a slight increase in the proportion of the population listening to radio on a daily basis; this now stands at 85 per cent, up 1 per cent.

Local radio continued the slow but relentless improvement in its position, with a 0.9 per cent increase in daytime market share, to 48.8 per cent. However, RTÉ Radio 1 remains the most popular station, with a 21.3 per cent market share, down 0.1 per cent. 2FM has 12.4 per cent of the national audience, Today FM 11.7 per cent and Newstalk 3.7 per cent.

The classical music station Lyric was the only national station to improve its market share, albeit marginally; it now stands at 1.6 per cent. Highland Radio was once again the strongest local radio station, with a 60.4 per cent market share in its catchment area.

In Dublin, FM104, Dublin's 98, Q102 and Phantom all increased their market share.