NZ ratings: Mediaworks lead NZME, whilst ZB dominates

Staff Writer

The second New Zealand radio ratings for the year have been released today with some significant movements amongst many stations.


The results are the first since an unprecendented number of moves in the market; including station name changes, breakfast & drive show changes, frequency changes, poachings and a new station launch. The ratings across the country reflect that volatility, and the effect of those changes will realistically not be clear until the 2015 ratings period.

Nevertheless, today the figures are what they are, and below we'll outline the outcomes in the three major markets of Auckland, Christchurch and Wellington.

For our New Zealand readers (or anyone who has a view of course), we'd love your local input and views on the results in the comments section below.

From an national perspective Mediaworks has increased its (commercial) share of the market by 3.2% to 49.1%, whilst NZME (formerly TRN) has declined 2.9% to 40.6%. In the key 25-54 demographic, Mediaworks has improved their lead over NZME with a 56.6% share compared to 31.9%.

The leading national brand is NewsTalkZB on a 12.2% share with Coast and Edge equal second on 8.5% overall.

However whilst the vast majority of brands are networked nationally in New Zealand, not all broadcast to all markets, so we will look at the key markets individually.



Auckland is the largest and most important market in New Zealand with around a third of the population living in that city. The ratings in this market therefore have a disproportionate effect on revenues for a company, and pretty much if you're strong in Auckland you'll do well nationally.

So to the overall rankings in Auckland:

  • NewsTalkZB remains the clear market leader in Auckland with a 13.4% share overall, a margin of nearly 6% over the #2 station. Whilst ZB fell in the younger demos, it strengthened it's position 55+.
  • ZB's success is led by Mike Hosking (right) on Breakfast who, whilst declining slightly, rated 18.4%; a lead of 11% over the #2 station. Quite extraordinary.
  • Coast has fallen by 1.8% with falls in all dayparts and in the upper demos. Coast retains the #2 spot overall, sharing it with a growing Breeze.
  • Breeze has seen some good growth 18-54, and added nearly a point to its overall share to be equal #2 overall.
  • Mediaworks CHR "Edge" is ranked #4 overall but has seen declines in most dayparts and demos. The station was helped by a strong drive performance seeing 'Guy Sharyn & Clint' hold the #2 Drive position on 10.3%
  • 'The Hits' is the repositioned 'Classic Hits' brand, and has both a new name and a new Breakfast Show in this result (Polly & Grant – who were transferred from sister-station ZM). The station has declined by 1.4% to 5.3 overall, whilst Breakfast fell by 0.4% to 5.3%. The majority of the decline was across the workday.
  • Mai FM was flat overall in 6th place on 5.2% with declines in adult demos offset by a jump with teens.
  • The Rock has increased slightly to 5.1% with big improvements in the older demos, and a massive jump in Breakfast (pic: Rog, Bryce & Leah) and Mornings.
  • ZM are another station which has undergone signficant change with the addition of the 'Fletch, Vaughan and Megan' Breakfast show; that said, the station has copped a whack in this book, falling 1.4% to 4.5% overall. Hardly surprising given the previous Breakfast show "Polly & Grant" has moved to The Hits, and many listeners would have moved with them. That said, Breakfast is the highest ranked daypart (4.9% down 1.0%), the majority of the hit was driven by daytime and drive performance.
  • The at times controversial talk station Radio Live has increased 1.1% to 4.3% with increases in all dayparts and almost all demos, but no real impact on ZB.
  • The Sound has taken a hit this survey, falling nearly a point to 4.2% and 10th place overall. As usually the case with rock stations, the workday performance softening has had a significant impact on the overall shares.
  • More FM Auckland has been a basket-case for a long time, now its second survey under former TRN Programmer Christian Boston sees it jump by 1.4 to 3.8% and move to 11th position. Growth in all dayparts and demos, centred 25-44 for More FM.
  • Not a lot to see for Flava, flatt-ish on a 3.7% share, with a big jump in teens.
  • George FM was also largely flat, with some declines in Breakfast and Workday balanced out by a strong performance in Drive and Nights.
  • Hauraki, like More FM, has been at the wrong end of the ratings list for a while now, however is showing signs of life; Hauraki doubled its overall share to 3.2% with big increases in all adult demos and all dayparts.
  • Radio Tarana is an Indian radio station that floats around the 1's and 2 shares each survey.
  • Radio Sport has halved it's audience from 2.7% to 1.4% in a soft result; however, in Auckland Radio Sport was simulcasting on the AM and FM band prior to this survey; earlier this year, it reverted to the AM band only with the FM frequency given to the new NZME brand Mix. Given that, a decline for Radio Sport is unsurprising. That said; whilst cume understandably fell, the greater downwards pressure came from TSL.
  • Mix, the new Auckland only station which took over the Radio Sport FM frequency, has debuted with a 1.2% share overall in its first survey.



We won't go into as much detail with the other markets given Auckland is the dominant market in New Zealand; however Christchurch is also a large market. The rankings overall are:

  • NewsTalkZB might be the 'big dog', and it remains the leading station overall in Christchurch, however a resurgent More FM off the back of a strong local, heritage Breakfast show (Si & Gary – pictured) is growing. NewsTalkZB only win the evenings daypart (by a mile) in this market, however such is their consistency across dayparts that they still are able to rank #1 overall.
  • More FM Christchurch will be very pleased, with a bumper survey today. #1 25-54, and #1 Breakfast. The station is 0.7% off being #1 overall, and will clearly be hoping to achieve that in S1/15.
  • Showing how challenging New Zealand can be sometimes; The Sound and Hauraki each saw the opposite occur in Christchurch, as in Auckland. 
  • Other notable movements in Christchurch include The Hits (ex-Classic Hits) falling by 2.2% to 3.5% overall, Mai FM falling by 1.1% to 3.3%; whilst The Sound jumped by 3.1% overall to rank 4th overall. Following the decline in Auckland, Radio Sport would have been pleased to see the Christchurch station improve by 1% to move into 10th ranking overall.



Below are the rankings for Wellington in S2/14, there were some signficant movements in this market as well:

  • The most notable positive movement was for the rebranded 'The Hits' which jumped a massive 4.4% to 9.4% overall, and rank 4th. This was driven out of a huge Breakfast improvement of 7.4% to 11.8% which saw the Breakfast show move from 8th to 3rd overall.
  • However as good as 'The Hits' was, it came at the expense of ZM; hardly surprising given the ZM breakfast show "Polly & Grant (pictured)" moved across to 'The Hits'. The ZM result was a significant hit with the station falling from 11.3 to 6.7%.
  • Other stations to see signficant falls in Wellington were Radio Live (-1.3%), Hauraki (-1.4%) and Breeze (-1.0%) whilst Edge (+0.9%) and The Sound (+2.3%) both saw improvements.


For all other markets in New Zealand you can access the detailed results through the TNS site here.

Particularly for our New Zealand readers, we'd love your local impressions and local knowledge on the results in the comments below. 


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