We have finished analysis of almost 80 stations and regional groups and the news is good for NPR News: Estimated weekly listeners to full-time News/Talk stations is up 11% from Fall 2016, the peak of last year’s election season.
Weekly listeners to dual-format stations airing NPR News also grew in the past year by 15% over Fall 2016.
Statistically, the uptick by NPR News/Talk stations was due to more estimated weekly listeners in Fall 2017 in larger Diary markets. In some cases the growth was spectacular. For instance, Vermont Public Radio News, the number broadcaster in Diary markets, was up 40,000, 12%. WAMC was up 15%.
But the biggest growth occurred in two markets where stations in a group were reorganized. During the past year WVTF, based in Roanoke, changed to 24/7 News/Talk and put that programming on stations with superior coverage. By our estimate, WVTF added over 130,000 estimated weekly listeners, a gain of 54% over Fall 2016.
Hawaii Public Radio (HPR) also reorganized their two program streams and put 24/7 News/Talk programming on the best signals. HPR’s estimated listeners grew by over 20%.
We will save further analysis for tomorrow’s post. Now let’s do the numbers: