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A Look At Chicago's April 2012 Radio Ratings From Arbitron

The Arbitron ratings for the Chicago radio market for the April period (which covers 3/29/12-4/25/12) were released this week. The following is a study of the local ratings for the demographics of Persons 6+ (All Ages) and Persons 25-54.

Looking first at the all ages (6+) numbers...

There was a minimal amount of changes from the March period to the April period, with the majority of radio station staying where they were or only slightly shifting.

In the overall ratings, WBBM-AM, combined with its simulcast on WCFS-FM, stayed in first place. The WBBM-AM/WCFS-FM broadcast brought in a 5.1 share in April, just a .1 drop in share from the previous month. WVAZ-FM also dropped by .1, but continues to show its strength, as it stays firmly in second place with a 5.0 share. WGN-AM remains in third place, but recovered some of that big loss it saw in March, gaining .3 share to end up with a 4.9 share.

WOJO-FM saw an increase of just .2 share, but that was enough to move the station from #6 to #4. That also gives WOJO-FM/La Que Buena a 4.5 share -- it's highest in over two years. WDRV-FM/WWDV-FM also gained .2 share and moved up in ranking from #8 to #5.

The only radio station seeing a major change upward or downward was north suburban WXLC-FM, which dropped in share from a 0.9 last period (tied for #28) to a 0.4 this period (tied for #39).

Here is how the top of the Persons ages 6+ rankings looked for the April 2012 ratings period...

Monday-Sunday 6:00am-Midnight:
   1 WBBM-AM
   2 WVAZ-FM
   3 WGN-AM
   4 WOJO-FM
   5t WDRV-FM
   5t WTMX-FM
   7 WLS-FM
   8 WKSC-FM
   9t WUSN-FM
   9t WLS-AM
   11 WGCI-FM
   12 WBBM-FM
   13t WXRT-FM
   13t WLUP-FM
   15 WLIT-FM

Looking at the stations with the top cume rankings for Persons ages 6+ for March 2012...
Monday-Sunday 6:00am-Midnight:
   1 WKSC-FM
   2 WBBM-FM
   3 WTMX-FM
   4 WLIT-FM
   5 WDRV-FM
   6 WILV-FM
   7 WLUP-FM
   8 WLS-FM
   9 WBBM-AM
   10 WGCI-FM


Looking now at the highly-desired demographic of ages 25-54...

In the overall numbers (Monday-Sunday 6:00am-Midnight), once again the big winner was the simulcast of WDRV-FM & WWDV-FM, which took first place with a 5.3 share -- a .1 decrease increase from March. Second place was Hubbard-owned sister-station WTMX-FM with a 5 share. WVAZ-FM had a .6 share decrease, slipping down for a three-way tie for third place with WKSC-FM & WOJO-FM. The biggest increase was for WGCI-FM, which jumped up by a .8 share to a 4.5 average share and sixth place. The rest of the top ten were (in order) WLUP-FM, WXRT-FM & WUSN-FM (tie), and WBBM-FM.

Besides WGCI-FM, notable jumps upward in the month of April include WUSN-FM & WPPN-FM, which each gained .4. WBEZ-FM & WSCR-AM both jumped up by .5, while WGN-AM gained .6. Going the opposite direction was WLIT-FM, which continues to fall from its holiday high, losing another .5 in April. Also dropping .5 was WMVP-AM. WXLC-FM fell a huge .8 in April.

As has been the case for a while now, no AM stations reached the Top 10 for the April period. The closest was WSCR-AM, which came in at #11 with a 3.5 share. WBBM-AM (which is also simulcast on the FM) came in tied at #13. WMVP-AM fell to #16, while WGN-AM moved up to #19. WLS-AM remained at #24.

In the March ratings period, there was a shocker in the overall numbers (Monday-Sunday 6:00am-Midnight) for the demographic of Women 25-54, when WVAZ-FM took over sole possession of first place -- the first time in years in a non-holiday month that a station other than WTMX-FM has been alone at the top of this demographic. In April, WTMX-FM reclaims its #1 spot for Women 25-54 with a 6.8 share. WVAZ-FM, however, fell down to #4 with a 5.2 share -- a huge 1.6 share drop in just four weeks' time. WKSC-FM was #2 with a 6.0 share, WUSN-FM was #3 with a 5.4 share. WBBM-FM remained at #5 with a 5.0 share. The rest of the Top 10 for Women were WGCI-FM, WPPN-FM, WLIT-FM, WOJO-FM, and WILV-FM.

For Men 25-54 in the overall numbers (Monday-Sunday 6:00am-Midnight), WDRV-FM is still by far #1 with a 6.7 share. In second place is WLUP-FM with a 5.9 share. WSCR-AM moves up to #3 with a 5.5 share. WOJO-FM is close behind at #4 with a 5.2 share, and WXRT-FM is #5 with a 4.9 share. The rest of the Top 10 for Men were: WMVP-AM, WGCI-FM, WVAZ-FM, WBBM-AM, and WTMX-FM.

For the Morning Drive time slot (6:00am-10:00am) for the ages of 25-54 (Men & Women), the top station is as always, WTMX-FM, this time with a 7.0 share. A pair of simulcast stations are tied at #2: WBBM-AM/WCFS-FM and WDRV-FM/WWDV-FM, each with 5.4 share. WSCR-AM moves up to #4 with 5.0 share. #5 is a tie between WOJO-FM and WGCI-FM, each with a 4.3 share. For WGCI-FM, it marks a 1.1 share increase for the "Morning Riot" morning show. For Women 25-54, their favorite morning station is WTMX-FM, while for Men 25-54, their favorite is WSCR-AM. Both The Mix's Eric & Kathy and The Score's Mully & Hanley continue their a lock on their female & male audiences, respectively.

With the Midday shift (10:00am-3:00pm), The Drive is once again king of the hill. WDRV-FM/WWDV-FM is in first with a 6.4 share, a .8 increase in two months. Jumping way up from #7 and into second place is WILV-FM/Rewind 100.3, which gains .8 in just one month and now has a 4.9 share. WOJO-FM also saw a nice jump upward, gaining .6 and now sitting at #3 with a 4.8 share. WLS-FM, falls to #4 with a 4.6 share, and WVAZ-FM falls to #5 with a 4.3 share.

In the Afternoon Drive time slot (3:00pm-7:00pm), first place with a 5.4 share is WKSC-FM. Second place in afternoons is a tie between WDRV-FM/WWDV-FM and WBBM-FM, both with a 5.0 share. This was a .5 increase for WBBM-FM, giving the station its highest afternoon ratings in a very long time. In fourth place is another two-way tie between WTMX-FM and WUSN-FM, both with a 4.7 share. This also shows the power of hit radio in the afternoons, as four out of the top five radio stations are CHR formats, or versions of them. (The Mix is currently a Hot AC/CHR hybrid and US99.5 is primarily Country CHR).

For the Evenings (7:00pm-Midnight), WDRV-FM/WWDV-FM is back at #1 with a 6.5 share. #2 is WOJO-FM with a 5.5 share. WVAZ-FM, last month's #1, falls to a three-way tie for #3, along with WGCI-FM & WLUP-FM, each with a 5.2 share.

The Weekend ratings (Saturday & Sunday, 6:00am-Midnight) has WVAZ-FM, WTMX-FM, WXRT-FM, and WLUP-FM all tied in first place with a 5.6 share each. WKSC-FM just missed making it a five-way tie at first, bringing in a 5.5 share and officially ranking at #5.


Taking a quick look at couple of other demographics -- one younger and one older...

For Persons 18-34 in the overall numbers (Monday-Sunday 6:00am-Midnight), WKSC-FM was #1 with a 7.1 share. WGCI-FM was #2 with a 6.9 share. WBBM-FM takes third place with a 6.5 share. WUSN-FN is #4 with a 6.2 share (a full 1.0 share increase since March). WTMX-FM is #5 with a 5.8 share. The rest of the Top 10 are (in order): WPWX-FM, WOJO-FM, WXRT-FM, WDRV-FM,and WVAZ-FM.

For Persons 35-64 in the overall numbers (Monday-Sunday 6:00am-Midnight), first place is a tie between WDRV-FM and WVAZ-FM, each with a 5.6 share. #3 is WBBM-AM with a 5.4 share, and #4 is WLS-FM with a 4.9 share. WLUP-FM remains at #5 with a 4.7 share. Rounding out the Top 10 are (in order): WOJO-FM, WTMX-FM, WXRT-FM, WLS-AM, and WGN-AM.

Ratings data © Copyright 2012 Arbitron Inc.
May not be quoted or reproduced without prior written permission from Arbitron.
The PPM ratings are based on audience estimates, and are the opinion of Arbitron and should not be relied on for precise accuracy or precise representativeness of a demographic or radio market.

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