With Alan Jones and his radio station bosses at 2GB locked in contract negotiations, interest in Tuesday's first ratings survey has been high.
The survey offered reason for celebration for reigning leader Jones and 2GB, as he retained his position at the top with a 15.2 per cent audience share.
Radio host Alan Jones maintains a clear lead despite a drop in audience share.Credit:AAP Image/Jono Searle
Adam Lang, the CEO of Macquarie Media – the broadcaster of 2GB – said he is not concerned by the result of this survey, nor by the slight dip year on year. Rather, he looks at the overall trends of the show and the station.
"We aren't analysing a single survey result, no. But trends, absolutely, and we are analysing them all the time," he said.
"I am pleased we have continued strength on 2GB across the station. We have continued strength on Alan's show – it starts off there with breakfast and it continues through the day."
Lang isn't spinning the figures there. Overall 2GB commands the biggest audience across Sydney's radio stations on weekdays, with a 13.3 per cent audience share. Its nearest rival is easy-listening station smoothfm, which has a 9.6 per cent audience share Monday to Friday.
2GB radio presenter Ray Hadley.Credit:Photo: Peter Rae
Ray Hadley, who takes over from Jones in the morning, still holds a 15 per cent audience share this year despite a drop of 2.9 points. Chris Smith's afternoon program grew by 0.9 points to an 11.4 per cent share and Ben Fordham's show, which airs outside regular drive timing, has a 10.7 per cent share between 3pm and 6pm (regular drive hours are 4pm to 7pm).
Chris Walton, managing director of media agency Nunn Media, said audience share would only form part of Jones' contract negotiations and that Tuesday's survey wouldn't have a great deal of impact on the conversation.
"Yes, he has lost over a point but he is still way ahead of anybody else," Walton said.
"If you look back over a longer time, to my memory that 15 to 16 [per cent] share is the range he has pretty much always been in. If he had gone down a point time after time over a number of surveys you might be getting concerned, but if you look year on year [the difference is minimal]."
Jones' contract negotiations have been the subject of intense media scrutiny recently, with varying reports on Macquarie's intentions to let him go, Jones' intentions to move elsewhere and the opposite of both scenarios. But while Lang wouldn't be drawn on the status of said negotiations, he was adamant he wasn't concerned Tuesday's results would see Jones out the door.
Nine, the publisher of this masthead, is the majority shareholder of Macquarie Media.
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