Latest RAJARs reveal mixed results for BBC Radio Scotland

IT is a mixed bag of results for BBC Radio Scotland, according to the latest radio listening figures, unveiled by auditors, RAJAR.

While its reach has increased between the third quarter of last year (July to September) and the last quarter, it was down, by some way, on twelve months previously. ‘Reach’ measures how many people tune in for at least five minutes during the course of an average week.

So, while BBC Scotland’s reach was up 14.4 per cent between Q3 of last year and Q4, it was down 14.5 per cent between Q4 last year and the same quarter the previous year.

Not surprisingly, given the improvement between the final two quarters of last year, the station’s share of its available audience increased from 7.2 per cent in Q3 of last year to 8.5 per cent during the following three months.

‘Share’ measures the total listening time accounted for by a station in the available geography in an average week, which – according to the latest figures – will provide particularly happy reading for Radio Borders (32.4 per cent), West Sound (25.2 per cent), and Moray Firth Radio (24.2 per cent).

Says Jeff Zycinski, head of Radio at BBC Scotland: “It was a very productive quarter across all genres and the report from Rajar shows the audience were in tune with the quality and range of our output.”

The schedule from the last quarter included a busy card of live domestic and European football, music events marking the culmination of the Scotland’s Music 07 campaign, plus a one-off historical satire, The Knox Factor.

Meanwhile, the station also reported a further rise in online consumption of content, underlining the growing popularity of digital access.

The hours of live streaming consumed by BBC Radio Scotland listeners grew from 205,000 in the third quarter of last year to 232,000 during the last three months of the year.

Elsewhere, among the big fallers, XFM Scotland (West) saw a 30.2 per cent drop in its reach between Q4 last year and the same time twelve months previously. The same year-on-year comparison also saw Clyde 2 suffer a 25.9 per cent drop, Kingdom FM a 23.4 per cent drop, and Wave 102 FM a 21.2 per cent drop.

Clyde 2’s drop, allied to a 10.3 per cent fall for Clyde 1, resulted in an overall 12.1 per cent fall for Radio Clyde, as a whole.

Tay FM, though, enjoyed a 18.1 per cent increase in its reach between Q4 2006 and Q4 2007.

The big reach riser between Q3 2007 and Q4 2007 was Edinburgh-based all-speech station, talk107: some 20.7 per cent. But it is from a low base: its share of its available audience is just 1.2 per cent.