Boston is one of my favorite radio towns. It has a legacy of great commercial and noncommercial stations and personalities. In some ways, listener-supported noncom radio was perfected in Boston, particularly as a business.
The two charts below show the published ratings for Boston area noncommercial stations in 2000 and 2014. Several stations have made impressive gains. To me, the noncom radio hero is WERS.
Unlike, WBUR and WGBH, WERS is primarily a student-staffed station. Student stations usually have high turnover with each academic year. WERS sees a lot of changes in people but the audience size has roughly doubled in the past 14 years. Emerson students are the eager to connect with listeners. Station management gives them the environment to excel.
NOTE: These two charts represent different methodologies and can NOT be compared statistically.
BOSTON FALL 2000
BOSTON FALL 2014
NIELSEN AUDIO PPM NOVEMBER 2014
Survey Period: 10/09/14 – 11/05/14
Top-Line Estimates as of 12/11/14
Monday – Sunday 6am – Midnight, Persons 6+
DATA © NIELSON AUDIO
Provided by RRC, Inc. for use by subscribers only
© Radio Research Consortium, Inc. // www.RRConline.org // RRC@RRConline.org
NONCOM RADIO HERO: WERS