With the GfK radio ratings surveys wrapped up for another year, Mediaweek has caught up with content bosses one last time before Christmas to reflect on the year that was and look ahead to 2024. Today, Mediaweek speaks with ARN’s chief content officer Duncan Campbell about survey eight, bringing Kyle and Jackie O to Melbourne, and the game plan for next year.
Pointing to the highlights of survey eight for ARN, Campbell said “Excluding DAB, this year we were the number one network in six out of eight surveys, we’re the number one network on an annualised basis again, and we recorded our best-ever ratings results – even ahead of last year.”
Whilst Campbell called the beginning of the year “challenging” due to marketing efforts from competitors, he said that “we managed to come back from” the hurdles of the year for a strong final survey.
“We’ve had Kyle and Jackie O sustaining their ratings and success this year, Jonesy and Amanda finished the year quite nicely as well. Perth is number one overall, and Adelaide is solid. Brisbane was a bit disappointing because a lot of work has gone on there, so I think that’s poised for some growth next year.
“It’s been a challenging year, but we’ve proven once again that we have very strong formats and we have the right strategy. We were robust in defence when we were attacked by our competitors.”
Kyle and Jackie O in Melbourne
Melbourne provided a lot of talking points in this survey, as KIIS 101.1’s breakfast team of Jason Hawkins and Lauren Phillips signed off to make way for Kyle and Jackie O in 2024. Audiences tuned in to farewell the duo, with a boost of 1.1 points bringing the show to a share of 9.1%.
With Hawkins still under contract at ARN, when asked what he might be up to in 2024, Campbell said “we’ll be announcing that early next year.”
As Sydney powerhouses Kyle and Jackie O prepare to expand into Melbourne, Mediaweek asked Campbell what the show will have to do to succeed in the southern city.
“What Christian O’Connell has proved is that it’s about the content and not necessarily about where you’re from,” he said. “The challenge is about changing perceptions in Melbourne – we’ve done some research that shows perceptions of the show are based on the shock jock era, it’s not the show that people think it is. It’s an improved show, the content is very strong.
“We will have the ability to do localised breaks if a big story breaks in Melbourne, and there will be split news bulletins and local information. We don’t have to modify the show much at all, really. It’s the promos and imaging for the Melbourne audience versus the Sydney audience, that’s where the difference will be.”
ARN in 2024
Looking to 2024, Campbell said the plan will be “to do as we always do”.
“We’ll be making sure we generate strong ratings in the 25-54 demographic for our commercial colleagues and advertising partners. That’s what we do.
“To do that we put together some very strong tactics, some very strong promotions, and some very strong breakfast shows. It’s not more of the same, but the strategy is not going to be changing.”
Top Image: Duncan Campbell