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February 22, 2024

Followers of the JANUARY survey fall into two camps. The devotees of all things merry and bright are looking to see how the mighty have fallen. Those who rail against the scourge of the incessant jingling of bells (not to mention drumming of drums) are hoping to see the great quarter hour migration return to its original nesting grounds. (If you read this as if it was being narrated by DAVID ATTENBOROUGH, it makes a lot more sense.)

The Ratings Experts from RESEARCH DIRECTOR, INC – along with math maestros from XTRENDS – are about to take you on a guided tour through another gang of five markets. This particular book ran from JANUARY 4th through JANUARY 31st and lacked any trace of the ghosts of CHRISTMAS past (looking at you, ELVIS). It did have a three-day weekend, saw the kids back on the bus, and featured plenty of football. Let us begin.

SEATTLE-TACOMA: The Leader Of The Pack

This was where three stations of significance had dueled it out over who could play the most ANDY WILLIAMS records. More on that in a second. Charging back into the 6+ lead for the third time in the last four surveys was AUDACY Country KKWF (100.7 THE WOLF) (6.1-7.3). UNIVERSITY OF WASHINGTON N/T KUOW landed its first up book since OCTOBER (6.2-6.9) to move up to #2. iHEARTMEDIA Classic Rock KZOK was up two slots to #3 (5.9-5.8), while AUDACY Album Oriented Rock KISW ended a three-book slide as it made its way up to #4 (3.8-5.4). The next three stations were all swimming in the frigid waters of the NORTH POLE. AUDACY Soft Rock KSWD (94.1 THE SOUND) dropped from #2 to #5 (8.0-4.6). It had a 5.1 share last year. HUBBARD AC KRWM (WARM 106.9) fell from #1 to #6 (9.7-4.5). Last year’s share was an identical 4.5. CRISTA Christian AC KCMS (SPIRIT 105.3) dipped from #21 to #23 (2.2-1.4). It had a 2.9 share a year ago. KRWM was still the cume leader but lost 34.5% of its previous total (850,800-556,900). KSWD was #3 with a 17.6% drop (606,700-500,00). KCMS shed 22.9% of its cume (203,100-156,500). The market was off by 2.8%.

KISW landed its largest 25-54 share in over a year as it rose from #4 to #1. KKWF repeated at #2 as it bounced back from a down book. HUBBARD CHR KQMV (MOViN’ 92.5) moved up to #3 with a solid increase, while FRIENDS OF KEXP Alternative KEXP rose three places to #4 with its best book since MARCH. iHEARTMEDIA CHR KBKS (HITS 106.1) leapt from #8 to #5 with a solid increase. KSWD slid from #3 to #6, while KRWM fell from #1 to #11.

Back in NOVEMBER, KKWF was #1 and in double figures 18-34. Then the geese started laying and things got messy. The station was back to where it once belonged as it moved from #3 to #1. KQMV jumped three places to #2 with a more NOVEMBER-like performance. Between the two stations, they garnered about a fifth of the market’s share. KISW vaulted from #7 to #3 with its highest score since FEBRUARY. It was forced to share with AUDACY Alternative KNDD (107.7 THE END), which moved in from #11 as it almost doubled its previous share. KZOK slipped from #2 to #5 with its smallest share since MAY. It was paired with AUDACY Rhythmic AC KHTP (HOT 103.7), which slipped from #3 as it gave back most of last month’s huge share increase. KRWM dropped from #1 to #8, while KSWD slid from #10 to #16.

There was a whole lotta shaking going on in the 18-49 ranks. KKWF and KQMV were back at #1 and #2, respectively, after a two-book hiatus. KISW jumped from #7 to #3 with its best outing since AUGUST, while KEXP rose from #9 to #4 with its highest mark since JULY. KBKS moved from #8 to #5 with a solid increase. KSWD and KHTP moved their partnership from #4 to #8. KRWM fell from #1 to #12.


This was one of the few markets that did not succumb to the pull of the holiday music psychosis – on a full-time basis, at least. COX MEDIA Urban AC WHQT (HOT 105) continued to lead the 6+ pack with its highest share since MARCH (7.8-9.4). TELEVISAUNIVISION Spanish Contemporary WAMR (AMOR 107.5) repeated at #2with its best outing in over a year (7.1-7.6). COX MEDIA Soft AC WFEZ (EASY 93.1) moved up to #3 as it rebounded from a down book (4.9-5.9). While AUDACY AC WLYF (101.5 LITE FM) did not fully delve into the dark arts of the elves, the station did dabble a bit. It also ended a three-book surge (6.8-5.2) as it dipped to #4. iHEARTMEDIA Spanish Contemporary WMIA (MAGIC 93.9) ended its tie with WFEZ and its four-book surge (4.9-4.4) as it stepped down to #5. After taking two books off, WFEZ was back as the cume leader (695,100-701,700) – a 0.9% increase. This was partially fueled by WLYF losing 10.4% of its cume (764,100-684,800). The market was off by 1.6%.

For the fifth time in the last six surveys, WAMR was #1 25-54. The station also landed its largest share in over a year. WMIA enjoyed its brief moment in the spotlight but had to step down to #2 with its first down book since SEPTEMBER. WLYF dipped to #3 as it returned most of last survey’s huge increase. WFEZ moved from #7 to #4 with a rather large share increase. WHQT repeated at #5 with a slight decrease. SBS Spanish Contemporary WXDJ (EL ZOL 106.7) slid to #6 with its smallest share in over a year.

The 18-34 demo is brought to you by the number three. That is how many stations were arrayed around the #1 spot. COX MEDIA Urban Contemporary WEDR (99 JAMZ) repeated with its fourth up book in a row. WAMR stepped up from #2 with a solid increase, while iHEARTMEDIA Spanish Contemporary WZTU (TÚ 94.9) advanced from #6 with its highest mark in over a year. A flat WHQT slipped to #4, while TELEVISAUNIVISION Spanish Contemporary WRTO (MIX 98.3) ended a four-book slide as it vaulted from #11 to #5. WFEZ slid four places to #6. The station that always reminds me of the WILL SMITH/TOMMY LEE JONES movie franchise – iHEARTMEDIA Urban Contemporary WMIB (103.5 THE BEAT) – slipped to #7 and was tied with AUDACY Country WKIS (KISS COUNTRY 99.9).

Despite a small share loss, WMIA made it back-to-back 18-49 wins. WAMR repeated at #2 with a small increase. The stations were a half-share apart. A flat WHQT was back at #3, while WZTU leapt from #8 to #4 with its best showing since APRIL. WFEZ moved up to #5 with a solid increase. Two stations were excused from the top five. WEDR dropped three places to #6 as it returned most of last survey’s big gain. WLYF fell from #5 to #11 as it ended a strong three-book surge.

PHOENIX: The Big Easy

Sure, iHEARTMEDIA AC KESZ (99.9 KEZ) only got about half its previous 6+ share (18.5-9.6), but the station was the clear winner for the sixth straight survey. Last year it fielded a 7.2 share, which was good for second place. HUBBARD Classic Rock KSLX stepped up to #2 as it bounced back from a down book (6.0-7.0). HUBBARD Album Oriented Rock KUPD had its highest share since SEPTEMBER as it motored from #5 to #3 (4.2-5.3). AUDACY Classic Hits KOOL (BIG 94.5) landed its best book in over a year (3.2-4.9) as it rose to #4. DESERT VALLEY Classic Hits KOAI (95.1/94.9 THE WOW FACTOR) dipped to #5 (4.5-4.6). HUBBARD Alternative KDKB (ALT AZ 93.3) returned most of last survey’s massive share increase (6.9-4.5) as it slid from #2 to #6. KESZ lost 37.0% of its cume but still led that category (1,403,600-883,800). The market was basically flat.

For the fourth book in a row, KESZ was #1 25-54. KDKB was back at #2 but could not duplicate the double-digit share it had in the last survey. KUPD ended a three-book slide as it repeated at #3. KSLX was still the #4 station as it bounced back from a down book. iHEARTMEDIA Country KNIX posted its best number in over a year to remain at #5. Nipping at its cowboy boots was KOOL, which advanced from #11 to #6 with its highest mark since AUGUST.

Both KDKB and KESZ managed to remain in double digits for the second book in a row. The difference was that KDKB was flat as it moved up to #1, while KESZ lost more than half its previous share to dip to #2. AUDACY CHR KALV (LIVE 101.5) repeated at #3. Despite landing its best book since MARCH, it trailed the leaders by at least three shares. KNIX was back at #4 as it ended a four-book slide. It was paired with AUDACY Country KMLE, which stepped up from #5 as it regained most of last survey’s large share loss. KUPD stepped down to #6 despite a strong share gain. iHEARTMEDIA CHR KZZP (104.7 KISS FM) dropped from a tie at #5 into one at #8 along with KOOL and iHEARTMEDIA Adult Hits KYOT (95.5 THE MOUNTAIN).

KESZ made it six 18-49 wins in a row and just missed hitting double digits as it had in the two previous surveys. KDKB returned most of last survey’s huge share increase but had enough left in the tank to repeat at #2. KUPD stepped up to #3 with its highest share since OCTOBER. KALV dipped to #4 but with a solid increase. It was joined there by KNIX, which moved up a slot with its best showing in over a year. KOOL leapt from #10 to #6.

DETROIT: Can Blue Men Sing The Whites?

Any BONZO DOG DOO-DAH BAND fans out there? Probably not. One thing we can be sure of is that the color blue was a boon for AUDACY Sports WXYT (97.1 THE TICKET). The station was back at #1 6+ after a two-book hiatus (8.6-9.8). Hey, we could be wrong – maybe the market was a buzz about the PISTONS (snort). Oh, and it also picked up an additional 1.8 share from the stream. iHEARTMEDIA AC WNIC ended its two-book run at #1 and stepped down to #2 (16.9-7.6). Last year the station posted a 7.7 share. iHEARTMEDIA CHR WKQI (CHANNEL 955) halted its six-book slide (5.1-6.9) as it moved up to #3. BEASLEY Classic Rock WCSX dipped to #4 (6.6-6.6), while AUDACY Country WYCD advanced to #5 as it bounced back from a down book (4.6-6.3). iHEARTMEDIA Urban AC WMXD (MIX 92.3) fell from #4 to #9 (5.5-5.3). WNIC remained in cume control, despite a 39.2% decrease (1,506,900-916,700). The market was down 2.4%.

After playing second fiddle to SANTA in the last survey, WXYT was back at #1 and in double digits 25-54. WKQI rebounded from a down book to move up to #2. BEASLEY Album Oriented Rock WRIF returned to its NOVEMBER roots as it rose to #3. WNIC slid from #1 to #4. WYCD and AUDACY Classic Hits WOMC had been tied at #7. WYCD rebounded from a down book to move up to #5, while WOMC had its best performance since SEPTEMBER to inch up to #6. A flat WMXD slid to #7, while BEASLEY Rhythmic AC WMGC (105.1 THE BOUNCE) dropped from #4 to #8.

For the twelfth time in the last 14 surveys WKQI was in double digits 18-34. The station was also #1 for the twelfth time during that span. WXYT stepped up to #2 and was very close to hitting double figures. WOMC was up two places to #3 with its highest mark in over a year, while WRIF inched up to #4 as it ended a steep two-book slide. WYCD got back all of last survey’s huge loss as it sprang from #10 to #5. WNIC fell from #1 to #6, while WMGC dropped three spots into a tie at #7 with CUMULUS Hot AC WDVD.

WXYT returned to the #1 spot with the 18-49 crowd and also landed a double-digit number. WKQI stepped up to #2 as it ended a six-book slide, while WRIF made it to #3 with a strong share increase. WNIC dipped from #1 to #4, while WYCD advanced from a tie at #7 with WOMC to #5 as its redemption tour continued. WMGC dropped four places to #8.


This was another market that had two flavors of seasonal sounds. UNIVERSITY OF NORTHWESTERN-ST. PAUL Christian Contemporary KTIS really didn’t really need the help. Heading into the DECEMBER survey, it had been #1 6+ for eight books in a row. The station did take a back seat to the Claus clan but moved back to #1 this month (12.1-10.7) Last year it posted a 5.0 share, which was good for eighth place. iHEARTMEDIA Sports KFXN (K-FAN FM 100.3) bounced back from a down book to move back up to #2 (6.8-7.5). iHEARTMEDIA Classic Hits KQQL (KOOL 108)was the 800-pound reindeer and it dropped from #1 to #3 (15.8-6.7). That was the exact same share the station posted a year ago when it was #4. MPR N/T KNOW repeated at #4 but with its highest score since JULY (5.2-6.6). It picked up an additional 0.8 share from its stream. iHEARTMEDIA Country KEEY (K102) moved up to #5 (4.4-5.7), while CUMULUS Album Oriented Rock KXXR (93X) dipped to #6 (5.0-5.5). KQQL remained the most heard radio station, despite a 35.0% decrease in cume (1,126,300-732,300). The market was off by 2.2%.

Thanks to a slight increase, KFXN moved from #3 to #1 25-54. KXXR was up two places to #2 with its highest mark since AUGUST. The stations were separated by less than a half-share. HUBBARD Hot AC KSTP (KS95) ended a three-book slide to advance two squares to #3. KTIS slipped to #4, while KEEY rose from a tie with KFXN at #8 to #5 with its highest total since JULY. KQQL fell from #1 to #8.

The last time KEEY was #1 18-34 was in MARCH. This time the station rose from #4 to capture the flag and was dangerously close to hitting double digits. KXXR was up to #2 with a solid share increase, while iHEARTMEDIA CHR KDWB dipped to #3 with its lowest score in over a year. Three stations were hanging around the #4 lounge. KQQL slipped from #1, while KSTP moved up from #6 as it shook off all that pixie dust. AUDACY Adult Hits KZJK (104.1 JACK FM) advanced from #8 with its best book in over a year. KTIS slid from #5 to #7.

For the first time since FEBRUARY, KXXR was #1 18-49. The station was within spitting distance of double-digit territory. KSTP moved up to #2 with a solid increase but was a share off the lead. KTIS stepped down to #3 as it halted a four-book surge. KFXN and KZJK were at #5 and #6, respectively, last survey. Both stations had solid increases to move up and into a tie at #4. KQQL fell from #1 to #8.

As always, The Ratings Experts from RESEARCH DIRECTOR, INC. stand ready to help you grow your ratings and revenue. Click the link below to get the gruesome details.

Thank you for reading this ratings manifesto. Stay tuned for our fourth and final installment where we take apart TAMPA, DENVER, SAN DIEGO, NASSAU-SUFFOLK, and CHARLOTTE. If you haven’t done so, please subscribe to our blog here.

-Steve Allan, Programming Research Consultant

About XTrends: RDI use XTrends to create these great market summaries.  If you’d like to test-drive XTrends, you can reach us here.

About Research Director, Inc.: Research Director, Inc. is based in Annapolis, Maryland. We help radio stations’ programming and sales departments maximize the value of their research. For more information, visit  www.ResearchDirectorInc.com, call 410-295-6619, or e-mail info@ResearchDirectorInc.com or sallan@ResearchDirectorInc.com.