Leading media owner, Wireless Group has seen an impressive set of RAJAR* results this quarter, with talkSPORT listenership increasing and the station smashing five of its own show records, as well as its three new sister radio stations, talkSPORT 2, talkRADIO and Virgin Radio, each delivering exciting first-time results for the Group.
talkSPORT has increased its weekly reach to 3.3million listeners – the second highest result that the station has ever posted – with a record 49% of these listeners ABC1 men.
The station has triumphed with its individual shows, breaking listener records across four of its key weekday shows – The Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast (0600 – 1000), Colin Murray (1000 – 1300), Hawksbee & Jacobs (1300 – 1600) and Drivetime with Darren Gough and Adrian Durham (1600 – 1900) – and on its Saturday Sports Breakfast, hosted by Georgie Bingham and Micky Quinn (0700 – 1100).
Re-launched music station Virgin Radio, which returned to the UK airwaves in March 2016 with experienced presenter Edith Bowman and a host of popular personalities at the helm, has also seen a great outcome, posting a weekly reach of 409,000 – a resounding success for the station’s first ever result. Edith’s own breakfast show has drawn in more than 200,000 weekly listeners, demonstrating a powerful combination of great music, big-name guests and engaging conversation.
Listeners have been enticed by some exceptional content, which has included interviews with the likes of Tom Hiddleston, Anthony Kiedis and Kirsten Dunst, and live performances from popular acts including Ladyhawke, Tom Odell, The Coral, Editors, Travis, The Temper Trap and Turin Brakes. The station, which became the first national station to launch live from a moving train earlier this year, has already appeared at this year’s Latitude Festival, and has also harnessed the power of digital to create some engaging moments, including live studio broadcasts via Periscope and behind-the-scenes video content.
talkSPORT 2, an extension of the much-loved talkSPORT brand, has also proven a popular choice, drawing an initial 285,000 listeners to the station. Launched to bring listeners access to a wider range of sports on British radio, talkSPORT 2’s content has been driven by a range of partnerships with leading sports rights holders, including the ICC World Twenty20 – where talkSPORT 2 was the only place listeners could hear every game – the Aviva Premiership, First Utility Superleague, La Liga, Indian Premier League, and ATP World Tour Masters, with the proven charismatic talkSPORT personality applied across the schedule.
talkRADIO, the Group’s new speech radio station which is fronted by a number of opinionated personalities including Paul Ross, Julia Hartley-Brewer, Iain Lee, Eamonn Holmes and George Galloway, has also delivered 224,000 weekly listeners. In another coup for talkRADIO, the average listener is tuning in for 6.5 hours each week, confirming that the station’s engaging content – which has included interviews with some of the UK’s biggest names from the world of politics and entertainment, including Nigel Farage, Ken Livingstone, Julian Assange, Katie Price and Professor Green – is keeping listeners tuned in.
Scott Taunton, Chief Operating Officer for Wireless Group plc, said: “In what has been an exceptionally busy period for us with the launch of three new national radio stations and a summer of football including the European Championships, we are delighted to have delivered audience growth for talkSPORT and to see our efforts rewarded following the launch of talkSPORT 2, talkRADIO and Virgin Radio.”
“The return of the iconic Virgin Radio brand has seen a particularly impressive result with 409,000 listeners tuning in each week, which is very encouraging for such early days.”
“Wireless Group’s national portfolio now reaches more than 3.8million people every single week. We will continue to invest in talent and content for our stations, ensuring that we remain a popular choice for both new and existing listeners.”