Dave Cameron doubles down on 2Day Breakfast changes, says ‘actual listening’ is increasing
Southern Cross Austereo’s (SCA) chief content officer, Dave Cameron, has continued to publicly back his new Breakfast show on Sydney’s 2DayFM, despite a drop in the ratings taking it to just a 3.8% share.
Cameron said anyone who wrote the show off, preemptively saying it had failed, was engaging in “crazy thinking”.
“Well it would be a pretty brave person to call the success or the failure of a show in 10 weeks. I certainly wouldn’t do that, because in my experience, I think with anyone that’s spent a little bit of time in radio, everyone knows that it takes a couple of years to get up and running. For us, in Sydney, Moonman [in the Morning on Triple M] is the great example of that and starting to build momentum and he’s been in the market over two years now. And he’s had a great increase today and really starting to chip away,” he said.
“That’s what I’d say to that. Everyone knows that it takes time, so for anyone who’s suggesting otherwise after 10 weeks, I think is crazy thinking.”
Lawrence Mooney took over SCA’s Triple M Breakfast in Sydney in 2019, inheriting a 6.2% share from The Grill Team. His first survey in 2019 saw the show slip to a 4.7% share.
Since then, the show has been as high as 6.9% (Survey 7, 2019), and dipped below 5% on two occasions (4.9% for Survey 2 of 2019, and Survey 6 of 2020). In Survey 2 of this year, it was up from 6.4% to 6.7%. Its average thus far is 5.7%.
Comparatively, The Morning Crew with Hughesy, Ed & Erin inherited a 4.2% share from Jamie Angel’s music format which came before it. Angel’s program from August 2019 until the end of 2020 got as high as 4.2%, and as low as 2.5%, but averaged 3.3% throughout its run.
This survey, The Morning Crew has slipped from its debut of 4.4% to 3.8%.
“It’s a very long and windy road to crack the Sydney market, there’s some very long-term shows in there. So there’s a huge amount of bolted-on listeners in that market, and it just reminds me of the patience and the consistency and the marketing that’s needed and the commitment that’s needed over a very long period of time in order to get back on the radar for Sydney,” Cameron said of last week’s slip.
He also noted that its cumulative audience had actually climbed from 288,000 to 319,000 – an increase of 31,0000.
For comparison, Ben Fordham’s show on 2GB, which has the highest share at 15.5%, has a cume of 466,000, while FM leaders Kyle & Jackie O, on a 10.9% share, have 622,000.
“It’s pleasing for us to have a cume growth at 2Day, and from an industry perspective, I’ll point this out, because pretty much every station in Breakfast has had some pretty significant audience coming back into Breakfast radio. So that’s pretty exciting because it means that people are returning to work, cars are back on the road and that commute listening is happening again. And 2Day Breakfast audience went up 30,000, but the thing about share is that you’re just divvying up the pie, it’s all relative. So even though our audience went up, our share has gone down today, because we saw some cume growth in some of our competitors that was higher than ours with that return to work,” he said.
This, combined with the digital data at radio networks’ disposal, means there can be a disconnect between perceived listening and actual listening, Cameron said – perhaps hinting at a need to shake up the entrenched ratings system.
“So when you put that in a relative sense, we’ve ended up coming off the boil a little bit. I’m still really confident in the sound of that show. We’re getting some great results in actual listening, as in digital listening, we’re seeing streaming grow on 2Day week on week, we’re seeing downloads of the show, podcast growing week on week, and so that’s actual listening versus GfK’s perceived listening, And it’s about getting that correlation between the two stronger, which is going to take time.”
You can hear more about last week’s radio ratings, and how the content bosses responded, by listening to the Radio Today Tonight podcast below.