Sydney Radio Ratings: Hughesy, Ed and Erin Molan nudge up 2Day FM’s breakfast share

Dave Hughes, Ed Kavalee, and Erin Molan pushed up 2Day FM’s breakfast share by 0.2 percentage points in the first survey of 2021, and the station’s first talent-driven results in the slot for more than a year.

In August 2019, 2Day swapped out a talent-led breakfast format for music after many failed attempts to install radio hosts who would challenge Kyle and Jackie O, whose defection to Kiis FM had a serious impact on the 2Day network.

L-R: Ed Kavalee, Dave Hughes and Erin Molan

But the music strategy, which launched with Jamie Angel as its sole presenter, also didn’t last; in November, Southern Cross Austereo announced Hughes and Kavalee would join the breakfast slot from drive, and Molan would be trusted with her first major FM gig.

The trio took the reins on 18 January, and had a 4.4% share for the survey period, which stretched from 17 January to 27 February. But SCA’s chief content officer, Dave Cameron, told Mumbrella he’ll take a long-term view of the new show, and give it at least two years to prove itself.

“We’ll start low and then grow with that show, as is always the strategy with new shows,” he said.

In the same time slot, Kyle and Jackie O experienced a decline – the pair take a longer summer break than most shows – but remained the top FM offering for the 17th consecutive survey, dropping 1.5 percentage points to hand Kiis a 9.8% breakfast share. It wasn’t the biggest slide in the 5:30am-9am slot though; WSFM’s Jonesy and Amanda fell again, dropping 1.7 percentage points for a 5.75% share. Moonman in the Mornings on Triple M had a 0.8 point uplift for a share of 6.4%.

At the front of the pack, on 2GB, Ben Fordham gained share for the second survey in a row for his best result ever since replacing Alan Jones last May. He hopped up one percentage point to an 18.1% share, which is a 3.3 point year-on-year climb versus Jones’ performance this time last year.

But despite Fordham’s dominant performance, this survey was all about the ABC. While Kyle and Jackie O wrestled away the second spot from the public broadcaster’s Wendy Harmer and Robbie Buck two surveys ago, and held onto it in December, Harmer and Buck’s show surged 2.2 percentage points this survey for a 12.7% share, sitting comfortably ahead of Kyle and Jackie O in second place.

Sydney radio ratings, GfK survey 1 2021. Source: Gfk. Click to enlarge


That growth continued at the other end of the day. ABC’s drive show, fronted by Richard Glover, skyrocketed 5.5 percentage points to 13.3%, shooting to the top of the pile, a spot previously reserved for Smooth FM.

Last survey, Smooth had a 10.8% share to lead drive-time, but a 1.9 percentage point slide – the most significant decline in the slot – left the station tied for second place with Nova, both on 8.9%.

Nova’s Kate, Tim and Joel Creasey were only back 0.5 points for Creasey’s third survey since replacing Marty Sheargold, while Triple M was down 0.8 points to 5.9%. It’s the first survey that Mick Molloy’s solo show – Kennedy announced her shock departure just before the survey period began – has followed on directly from Marty Sheargold’s solo endeavour. Sheargold’s Melbourne breakfast show is syndicated nationally from 3-4pm before the drive show.

2GB’s Jim Wilson, who took over from Fordham when he switched to breakfast, experienced further decline. His drive show was only back 0.1 points, but he now sits on an 8% share after inheriting a 10.5% share and slowly eroding it across each of his four surveys thus far.

Kiis’ Will and Woody also experienced a notable drop, recording an 8.5% share due to a 1.7 point drop.

Sydney radio ratings, GfK survey 1 2021, total audience. Source: Gfk. Click to enlarge


Overall, in the people 10+ demographic, the ABC’s breakfast and drive-time growth translated into a 3.7 point climb for a 12.2% share, considerably narrowing the gap with leader 2GB, which was up 0.6 points to 14.4%.

2Day FM had a 0.2 point climb to 4.2%, while Kiis sat on 7.9%, a 1.8 percentage point decrease, and the biggest drop among the stations. Triple M remained steady on 6.1%, Nova rested on 6.4% (back 0.4 points), and Smooth rolled backwards by 0.5 points for a 9.4% share. Despite the slight decrease, Smooth held onto its number one FM crown.

The Hottest 100, which aired in January, gave Triple J a 1 percentage point boost to 5.7%.


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