‘Extraordinary’: Market reacts to Kyle & Jackie O’s historic result

Former Editor & Content Director

KIIS FM’s radio rivals had nothing but praise for its historic result today, saying the world would be paying attention to Kyle Sandilands and Jackie ‘O’ Henderson’s milestone.

The duo topped long-running #1 station 2GB in the Breakfast slot, with The Kyle & Jackie O Show surging to a 15.5% share, ahead of Ben Fordham’s 13.3%.

Chief content officer of Southern Cross Austereo (SCA), Dave Cameron, said today was Kyle & Jackie O’s day.

“And congratulations to them, because it’s a great show, and [it’s] achieving its best result ever,” he told Radio Today.

“I acknowledge that and hugely applaud them because it’s a great show that’s clearly still delivering. And they’ve had a ripping day. So full congratulations to them.”

SCA’s shows, by comparison, struggled. 2DayFM, the former home of The Kyle & Jackie O Show, had 3.3% for its Breakfast offering of The Morning Crew with Hughesy, Ed & Erin, while Triple M’s Moonman in the Morning fell to 4.6%.

NOVA Entertainment’s chief programming and marketing officer, Paul Jackson, meanwhile, was full of adjectives to describe KIIS FM’s breakthrough Breakfast moment.

“The KIIS numbers today, that is extraordinary,” he said. “You can only say ‘Wow’ and ‘Well done’.”

He noted last survey’s 12.9% share for the duo was their best-ever result, so to climb even further in Survey 4 was unprecedented.

“There may not be too many words to describe it. I think it’s sensational… I think when you’ve been doing Breakfast radio that long and then getting your best-ever numbers, that’s high praise indeed. And I think at a global level, people will notice that.

“And I think when someone does those sorts of ratings, they must be doing strong content for their audience… I am highly impressed, and Kyle Sandilands is a bit of a radio guru, it’s fair to say.”

NOVA’s stations, he said, are occupying the middle ground, behind KIIS but well ahead of 2Day, with Nova’s Fitzy & Wippa pulling in 6.4% in Breakfast, and smooth’s Bogart Torelli & Glenn Daniel’s The More Music Breakfast Show on 7.3%.

And while Nine Radio may run a different race and appeal to a vastly different demographic than KIIS, it was still an historic moment for the FM station to topple 2GB in Breakfast.

Nine Radio’s head of content, Greg Byrnes, said The Kyle & Jackie O Show result was “wonderful for them, absolutely” and they deserved credit.

His focus, however, was on Ben Fordham, who Byrnes noted, hadn’t actually suffered much of a fall – down just 0.2 points to his 13.3% share.

“Well, Ben has held. He’s steady, which is most encouraging,” he said.

For the Australian Radio Network’s (ARN) chief content officer, Duncan Campbell, his KIIS station in Sydney is now up there as one of the best contemporary hit radio stations in the world and is sounding the best it’s ever sounded, he said.

“One respected former content director in Sydney said to me the other day ‘It’s as close to perfect as you can get’, and I think that’s fairly true. Daytimes with Gordie are strong. Will & Woody in Drive, they’ve improved over the last 12 months. You’ve got Mitch Churi at night – very, very strong lineup, and the station just holds together really well,” he said.

As for Henderson and Sandilands, he said their love for radio, and the fact they haven’t tired of it after two decades, is a magic ingredient most other stations don’t have the luxury of calling upon.

“They just have an extraordinary amount of passion for what they do. You’d think after all this time and doing well in terms of income as well, that they would be getting a bit tired of it all. But they’re not. He still, he loves radio. She loves radio. It runs through their veins… and they still have a huge amount of passion for it. And when things don’t go well, they get upset about it. They want perfection.”

He said the duo were ecstatic with today’s result

“I’ve spoken to them both, and this is a really big deal for them, and something which they were hoping would happen in their career, and it has. And to be #1 in Sydney outright is fantastic, and also by quite a margin today.”

He also paid tribute to the team, or “the machine” behind the show, including KIIS’ content director Bargwanna, “one of the best content directors in the country”.

“The content is impressive every single day. It will surprise you. The old saying ‘Expect the unexpected’ is very true. And that keeps people cemented onto that station. The habitual listening is very strong, and it’s very hard to break.”

Outside of Breakfast, 2GB was on top overall with an 11.8% share to KIIS’ 10.6%.

Campbell said’ he’d prefer to bask in the glory of Kyle & Jackie O’s result rather than worry about whether KIIS could continue to topple 2GB in more day parts, but he did note “anything is possible”.

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