The January ratings have come out in Tampa, and the Nielsen gods were very kind to sports talker 620 WDAE. Considering that the Buccaneers were out of the playoffs, baseball wasn’t in full swing, and the market doesn’t have an NBA team, either the Lightning are a sports talk phenomenon, the NFL Playoffs matter a great deal, or the talent are on fire and producing content that can’t afford to be missed.
Although I’m sure the radio station would love to say it’s the latter, it’s likely a combination of many of those factors, and in any event, a good month is a good month, regardless of how it comes together.
Bear in mind as you review the numbers, that WDAE doesn’t face a serious contender for their sports talk crown in the Tampa market. After CBS and Beasley finalized a business deal in 2014 which resulted in Beasley pulling the plug on the sports format on 98.7 The Fan, the market’s only other sports talk station, Sports Talk 1040, didn’t appear in the January ratings.
That said, WDAE does line up against every other radio station in the market, and it’s clear that their brand of sports talk has had a strong appeal to local listeners.
In the desired demographic of Men 25-54 M-F 6A-7P, the radio station delivered a 6.1, which was good enough for 3rd place. That was up from a 4.3 in December, and a 4.1 at the same time last year. A two share rise is very impressive and shows that the station is onto something.
In analyzing the shows themselves, here’s how they stacked up.
In mornings from 6a-9a, Rick and Tom finished 6th with a 5.6.
From 9a-12p, Ronnie and TKras came in 3rd with a strong 7.7. A 2 point spike from mornings to middays tells you that the audience is making an appointment to hear what Ronnie and Tom have to say.
In the 12p-3p slot, Ron and JP were 3rd with a 6.5. What makes that more impressive is that it was the show’s first official ratings book since former host Ian Beckles departed. Not a bad way to start off for a new show.
To round things out, Steve Duemig produced an 8th place finish in afternoons, delivering a 4.7.
Overall, the middays are where WDAE experienced their largest success, and now the challenge is to maintain the performance in middays, and increase the growth during the drive times. If they can do that, 2016 figures to be very kind to the folks at iHeart Tampa.
16.9% of All Sports Radio Listeners Are Streaming
The news comes as Nielsen reported that 11.3% of all radio listenership comes thru a stream, up from 6.9% in May of 2020.
According to Nielsen, sports radio stations are the third-most streamed spoken word format, just behind Talk/Personality and News/Talk/Info. The trend is continuing to show that streaming is on the uptick.
The survey found that in May 2022, 16.9% of sports talk radio’s audience tunes in via the station’s online stream. That news comes as Nielson reported that 11.3% of all radio listenership comes thru a stream, up from 6.9% in May of 2020.
Nielsen notes that in the 45 PPM markets they are grabbing data from and the 4,800+ stations that stream in those markets, just 30% of them are encoded. That encoding allows for Nielsen to accurately measure the streams. They used the listener data from 1,500 stations across the U.S., in their latest report, AM/FM Radio Streaming Growth in PPM Markets.
The survey also showed that streaming levels differ widely by radio format. Spoken word formats display strong streaming listenership (Talk/Personality: 31.2%, News/Talk/Info: 19.1%, All Sports: 16.9%). In fact, Nielsen found that 1/3 of all AM/FM streaming in PPM markets is to spoken word formats.
New Study Finds Listeners to MLB on Radio Are Willing to Spend
More than one third (34%) of the respondents recently purchased clothing/apparel that features their favorite team… 27% have visited a ballpark in the past year. That compares to only 19% of the average MLB fan base has made an apparel purchase to support their team while just 11% have gone to a game in person in that same time span.
When it comes to advertiser’s attempting to reach an affluent and engaged audience, sports talk radio might have a whale on their hands. Major League Baseball play-by-play features an audience that has money and has no problems spending it.
In a recent MRI-Simmons study, data shows that consumers who listen to MLB broadcasts on the radio are the perfect audience for sports marketers. According to the analysis, done by Katz Radio Group, nearly two thirds (62%) of those surveyed consider themselves “super fans” of baseball. That number is 58% higher than the average.
Those “super fans” are willing to spend to support their team, as well. More than one third (34%) of the respondents recently purchased clothing/apparel that features their favorite team. Those fans are also far more willing to make the trip to see their team. The study found that 27% have visited a ballpark in the past year. That compares to only 19% of the average MLB fan base has made an apparel purchase to support their team while just 11% have gone to a game in person in that same time span.
The news continues getting better for advertisers. Continued analysis reveals that 66% of listeners are currently employed and have a median household income greater than $106,000.
Listeners to MLB games on the radio are also 34% more likely to place a sports bet and 106% more likely to be a participant in fantasy baseball.
Jeff Dean Signs Off At ESPN Tucson for The Final Time
Dean said on Facebook: “…the years of burning the candle at both ends has taken a dire toll on my health and for the first time in my life, I’m going to put myself and my livelihood first”
Fans will no longer be able to tune into ESPN Tucson and hear Jeff Dean hosting his show. Friday morning was his last show, according to his Facebook and Twitter pages.
The Jeff Dean Show had been airing from 7-9a MT weekday mornings. Dean took to social media to relay the news and the reason behind him stepping away from the microphone. Dean said on Facebook:
“This morning I signed off from my radio show on ESPN Tucson for the final time. I have been devoting too much of my life and my time to working multiple jobs…the years of burning the candle at both ends has taken a dire toll on my health and for the first time in my life, I’m going to put myself and my livelihood first”
Dean went on to emphasize that he isn’t stepping away from ESPN Tucson, he’s just taking himself off the air. He also added that “gladly, I will be continuing my position as PA announcer of University of Arizona Football and Men’s basketball.”
Dean would also go onto Twitter to add even further context for his self-removal from the ESPN Tucson airwaves. He added, “It’s not a decision I arrived at hastily, as it’s been a 6 month mental grind to make the ultimate decision that had to be made, and I’m not particularly happy about it, but I have to put my health first, we all do, and make sure we’re around long enough to enjoy life”.
Dean had been ESPN Tucson’s morning host since November 2019.