IN the space of just 12 months, radio station, Galaxy Scotland, has doubled the number of listeners tuning in – according to radio listening audit body, RAJAR.
From an average 195,000 people listening to the station for at least five minutes during a week – defined as ‘reach’ – between January and March last year, its reach figure during the first three months of this year was up to 391,000. Indeed, between the final three months of last year and the first three months of this year, the reach increased by 25 per cent, from 312,000.
Galaxy Scotland is broadcast on on 106.1 and 105.7 FM. It was previously known as Beat 106 and then Xfm Scotland.
Says programme controller, Stuart Barrie: “The whole team is delighted with these fantastic new RAJAR results. We’re all incredibly passionate about Galaxy and we’re pleased that our audience feels the same. The growth shown over the year-and-a-half since we’ve launched has been simply incredible and we remain committed to the growth and success of Galaxy in Scotland as the number one commercial radio station for our target audience of 15-34 year olds.”
BBC Radio Scotland also had cause to celebrate the latest RAJARs, after increasing its reach between Q4 of last year and Q1 of this year by some 90,000 – from 864,000 to 955,000.
In terms of ‘share’ the station attracted an average 8.1 per cent of its available listening audience between January and March.
Earlier this week, BBC Radio Scotland won a Sony Radio Academy Award for Sportsound, which took the Best Sports Programme prize.
Says Jeff Zycinski, head of BBC Radio Scotland: “As usual our news and sports programmes – Good Morning Scotland and Sportsound – are bringing in the big numbers, and I have little doubt that more people were tuning in during January and February when the weather played havoc with travel plans.
During the last quarter of last year, the station’s share of its available audience was 7.4 per year, while it was 7.6 per cent this time last year. Its reach this time last year was 928,000.
Among the other big gainers – reach-wise – between the final quarter of last year and the first quarter of this, Clyde 2 was up 22.1 per cent, while Forth2 was up 12.8 per cent and Radio Borders was up 5.8 per cent. Dundee-based Wave 102, meanwhile, was up four per cent. Sony Radio Academy award-winning Moray Firth Radio (winner of the prize for Best Station (serving a population of up to 300,000)) saw its reach increase by 7.7 per cent.
However, the reach figures, over the same period, for Central FM, Northsound Two and 96.3 Rock Radio were less cheering drops of 6.8 per cent, seven per cent and 7.4 per cent, respectively.
The figures provide little help understanding the impact, if any, of Bauer Media choosing to pool programming among a number of its Scottish stations it owns: in terms of reach, Northsound Two may be significantly down, but Clyde 2 and Forth2 are both significantly up.
Says Adam Findlay, managing director at Wave 102: “We remain committed to our belief in local programming, local content and local presenters which gives us a unique position in the Dundee market. To have held our market position in the last 12 months is encouraging and we are confident that listeners will continue to gravitate toward local content in the future.”
Findlay is also MD of Aberdeen station, Original 106, which is understood to have increased its reach for a sixth, successive time.