Paul Jackson: ‘we’ve got a great game plan too’

Staff Writer

If you haven't yet seen the results and analysis from Survey 8, see it all here.

You can also see the press releases and the ups and downs.

Earlier we heard what Craig Bruce from SCA had to say after the final survey result of 2013 and later this morning we'll hear from ARN's Duncan Campbell. Below, I chat with Paul Jackson, dmg Radio's Group Program Director, and get his take on their survey.

Mark: Overall are you happy with today's result for dmg ?

Paul: We are delighted that we have the number 1 network again both in cume and share. So if we take the sum of the parts across the country and every Nova has been consistent this year and delivered pretty much every book. It's been about growth and stability.

Mark: Would you have liked more out of the farewell Hughesy & Kate result ?

Paul: Yeah I suppose the audience were flicking backwards and forwards between a few stations and Triple M came out of that certainly very well. But at the other end of the day in drive where we win outright that is really where Meshel was playing Fifi and we got 10.8 plays 10.2 and that's your breakfast dynamic for next year. We're very focused on Meshel and Tommy next year and you might be aware they started today and were sounding terrific. It's really all about next year for us now.

Mark: So will Meshel & Tommy stay on now or are they just doing a few shows before Christmas ?

Paul: They're just bedding in this side of Christmas and then they'll be back early in the new year.

Mark: While we're in Melbourne, smooth are up slightly (0.1)

Paul: Steady as she goes for smooth and consistency is what we want to see. Obviously the numbers are low in relevant terms to what we see in Sydney. Within that though we've overtaken Mix, the cumes are going forward and the demos look very strong for us. Doing 7 shares in the daytime then 6-7 on the weekend, some very good numbers indeed.

Mark: Sydney is quite a volatile market at the moment, a lot of talk and changes all over the place. Smooth is back a bit 40+ with some movement toward the ABC in that demo. Where do you expect smooth to be early next year with all the change ?

Paul: The older end in Sydney is all about ABC and Adam Spencer's farewell. The numbers that 702 got are nothing short of sensational so they whipped up a huge frenzy and rightly so. We were caught up a bit in that but relatively speaking we're number 3 in the market, we held off WSFM, Mix and Triple M. So delighted with the overall number and the overall position. I think next year at the very least more of the same for smooth. With all the dynamics changing around us I think it leaves us potentially long term in a very good place indeed. We have good cume and we want more. We're doing 527,000 but if you look at Mix and WSFM, there are people to be gathered up.

Mark: In Brisbane another #1 result for Nova 106.9.

Paul: Yes but may I remind you that a certain Mr. Bruce (Craig Bruce at SCA) ridiculed at the start of the year saying it would be a "two horse race". It has indeed turned out to be a two horse race most of the year (between Nova and 97.3).

Jay (Walkerden) and Dee and the team there do a world class job. 13.6 share is sensational and 97.3 on 12.0 – only 2 stations (commercial FM) in double figures so that's the two horse race.

Mark: In Adelaide Nova have jumped FIVEaa 10+

Paul: Lewis and Lowe (Nova breakfast) have been brilliant all year and on their top form at the moment. So the station is performing to a high standard and I can see that continuing. We have great plans in place for next year, not just in Adelaide but across the board for Nova. I don't think we've been better organised across both brands. Everyone thinks they've got a great game plan, we do too.

Mark: Over in Perth, Nova has held onto #2 behind Mix 94.5

Paul: This year would have to be one of the great years for Nova Perth. The entire station really, the cume is sensational and again #1. Exceptional.

Mark: Back to Sydney and how do you see the market in 2014 ?

Paul: It's an under 40 battle, we've gotta win under 40. KIIS is coming into play in that area, 2Day FM has played in there for so many years and of course Nova. I tell our people that under 40 at breakfast we are the market leader. We've got 406,000, 2Day have got 391,000. I would surmise that 2Day's audience under 40 will go backwards and that KIIS has a hell of a long way to come. There's this dynamic changing between those two stations and there's a lot of people to pick up in between.

We can see even now on 2Day FM the sparkle goes because Kyle and Jackie O, the gatekeepers of that station for so many years, are no longer embracing it. So then every demographic has gone backwards, every show's share has gone backwards and that's really just the early rumblings of that beginning to happen.

It bodes very well for the potential of Nova 96.9 being first but also there's a lot of people moving around the Sydney market that are also going to discover smooth in the coming months as well. So we will continue running our own race.

We don't knee jerk to anything that anyone else is doing. We could look over at WSFM and see some of their comments recently about it being an over 40's pop station and they're putting The Love God on there. It's all too clear to see what they're doing and actually they're trying to block smooth. I welcome that battle next year. I think it's great for the consumer, it's great for advertisers and it's great for the industry overall.

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