Paul Jackson: Nova Entertainment strong after survey 3

Staff Writer

Nova Entertainment Group Program Director Paul Jackson said the results from survey three were fantastic from a network perspective.

“It was only a few years ago we used to talk about ‘under 40s’ and Nova’s ambition with that across the country, and now it is always about being first as a 10 plus network.”

“We have done brilliantly,” he said.

Kate, Tim and Marty in drive are doing great this year and Smallzy is a star performer, consistently.”

“When you break it around market to market much of that is reflected around the grounds,” Jackson added.



Maybe Sydney wasn’t the best market to start with for Jackson, given that Nova is back a touch and smoothfm went down 0.8 and dropped across the workday.

The programmer said: “Sydney is hugely competitive.”

“Nova wins cume with 917,000 and that is a great achievement. I think we’ve done that most books if not all this year.”

“I think we’re happy with the numbers there and the way it breaks down – number one under 40 position alongside the cume number.”

But what about smoothfm?

“When I compare smooth in Sydney with smooth in Melbourne, it doesn’t particularly worry me,” Jackson said.

“smooth in Melbourne has outstanding numbers and the shape of both stations is exactly the same.”

“In Melbourne, we’re number one in females 25 plus, but we’re number three in Sydney.

“The daytimes have let smooth Sydney down a bit and that’s probably due to WSFM’s very credible performance in taking out the number one spot.”

Jackson believed a strong marketing campaign had helped WSFM achieve their high numbers: “They’ve been doing a lot of marketing – both television and outdoor and I think that’s probably helped sweep them along.”

“I do think smooth’s been a little caught up in all of that really.”



A year ago, the situation with smoothfm was the opposite.  The Sydney station was performing but Melbourne’s ratings were questionable.

“I’d love to get them both going, doing the same thing at the same time,” Jackson told me.

The Melbourne ratings story shows a fairly flat survey for smooth. They went up half a point in breaky and a full point in drive.

Meanwhile, Nova dropped 0.6 overall and 0.9 in breakfast.

Both stations have a 10 plus figure of 6.9 (like Fox and Triple M).

Jackson said: “To have four stations on 6.9 I think tells you something about the marketplace. With the leader on 8.8, there’s not a big gap which tells you on any given day, any one of those stations could leapfrog to the front.

“So, then it’s all about the demos and how you perform inside of that.”

Jackson pointed out Nova is actually number one under 50: “We’ve got to start looking at that as well.”

“It takes the context away from everyone being on 6.9 because if you look at it another way, that is a powerful position.”

“It’s ‘game on’ in Melbourne,” he added.



“Brisbane never lets us down,” Jackson said.

Survey three has Nova at number two overall. The station boasts the best 18-24 and 25-39 figures.

Ash, Kip and Lutsy lost their number one breaky spot to the ABC and slipped into third in that timeslot overall (second FM) but the signs were positive across the day and in drive.

Jackson interpreted the results like this: “We scored terrifically across the board which is what we expect – we don’t expect it lightly – but Jay (Walkerden) and the team do a wonderful job and we’re very happy with the performance in Brisbane in terms of cume and the share the breakfast show.”

“It has been a huge battle with us and 97.3 and really they’ve stolen it this time because of the very older-end audience that they have; 55 plus is where we just can’t compete with them.”



In Adelaide, Nova climbed to number two in the market and Jackson said: “I’ve been delighted with the Lewis and Lowe breakfast show since it first started.”

“We have a wonderful team in Adelaide.”

“The cumes are very nearly number one.”

Even though Triple M’s breakfast show went up by 1.5, something Jackson credited to being AFL season, Nova has a four point lead in the timeslot. (They are also four points behind market leaders Mix.)



The whole market was fairly flat in Perth, where Nova is third FM behind Mix 94.5 and triple j.

Jackson was happy with an 11.4 overall for Nova and said: “We’re bumping along with 11.5s and 11.6s; 11.4 is par for the course.”

“(GM) Gary Roberts and (PD) Dan Underhill never get it wrong.”

“We’re in a dominant position. A cume of 502,000 in Perth is extraordinary.”

When I asked him if having the heritage breakfast show in the market, with Nathan, Nat and Shaun helped he said ‘definitely’.

“25-39 is our sweet spot, but we’re able to sweep up a lot of 40 plus listening as well.”

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