Brisbane radio ratings: Nova surges into top spot while 4BC falters slightly

GfK radio ratings were paused in April due to COVID-19. The last released survey was survey two, released on April 16. Survey three, four and five were cancelled. This story covers survey six, which ran from Sun Jul 26 to Sat Sept 19. Survey seven will be released as normal.

4BC’s new breakfast host, Neil Breen, has delivered a 1.5 point loss in his first survey for the Nine Radio station, after taking over from Alan Jones at the start of June. The breakfast program now holds an 8.2% share.

Jones announced his retirement from radio in May citing health reasons. His program was syndicated across Sydney and Brisbane, with Ben Fordham taking over breakfast in Sydney and Breen hosting a local breakfast show in Brisbane.

Breen took over from Alan Jones

The latest GfK survey results, which measured the period from 26 July to 19 September, mark the return of radio ratings, which were put on pause earlier this year due to COVID-19. Consequently, surveys three, four and five were cancelled.

It is also the first results for former LNP politician, Scott Emerson, who took over 4BC’s drive slot from Fordham halfway through the survey period on 10 August. The station’s drive slot also dropped from its previous sitting at a 4.3% audience share to a 3.6% this survey.

However, the loss for 4BC overall was only 0.5 points, leaving the network with a 7.1% share.

Greg Byrnes, Nine Radio’s head of content, said he was happy with how the network performed.

“At 4BC we made a commitment to expand local content with Neil Breen in Breakfast and Scott Emerson in Drive. Both have been embraced in Brisbane and have a solid foundation to build from.”

Afternoons with Deborah Knight has held its audience recording a 6.3% share.

Nova was the best performer overall with a 1.1 percentage point rise which saw it surge to top spot in the market overall. Former leaders ARN’s 97.3 FM and B105 held stead on 10.5% and 10.4% respectively. Triple M rose 0.6 percentage points to 10.5%.

Whilst the ratings were on pause major changes also took place at Southern Cross Austereo’s Hit 105, rebranding the station back to its heritage brand of B105.

B105 saw the most substantial growth in the drive slot. The teams of Carrie Bickmore and Tommy Little, followed by Dave ‘Hughesy’ Hughes and Ed Kavalee experienced a 1.9% jump, drawing closer to the market leaders of Nova’s Kate Ritchie, Tim Blackwell and Marty Sheargold.

In Sheargold’s last survey with the network, the trio increased their audience share by 0.1 ratings points, to now sit on 14.5%. Sheargold finished up with the show on 11 September and was replaced with comedian Joel Creasey.

Brisbane radio ratings for survey six. Source: GfK [Click to enlarge]

The biggest changes in breakfast came from 4KQ, which was up 2.7 points, bumping it up to a 9.9% share, and Nova’s Ash, Kip, Luttsy and Susie O’Neill taking the lead in the slot after gaining 2 points for a 12.2% share.

ABC Brisbane held the equal second spot in the breakfast slot, gaining 0.4 points to rival B105 on 11%.

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