Radio Ratings: KIIS and WSFM battle it out for FM dominance in Sydney

Welcome to Radio Today’s coverage of the seventh metro radio survey of 2021.

The results from GfK’s Survey 7 are published below at 9:30am AEDT, along with the #1 AM and FM stations in each market.

Hit the refresh button throughout the day for all the key takeaways from each metro market, and later in the week, we’ll bring you insights from content bosses across the major networks.

You can also circle back to Survey 6 results here and catch all the PR Release spin here.


  • #1 FM is WSFM with KIIS close, at only 0.1 behind
  • 2GB #AM
  • Top FM breakfast show KIIS
  • Top AM breakfast show 2GB
  • Top FM Drive show Smooth
  • Top AM Drive show ABC Sydney


ARN’s KIIS and WSFM are battling it out for top FM position, with WSFM on 8.1% overall just ahead of KIIS on 8.0%. But in the key breakfast shift it is the opposite way around, with Kyle and Jackie on KIIS the top breakfast show at 10.7% and WSFM’s Jonesy and Amanda second in FM breakfast on 7.9%. Between both stations ARN has good coverage of the younger and older demographics.

2GB’s Ben Fordham has lifted its share to the highest figure since he took over the shift, with 19.8%. 2GB is the top AM station.

Smooth FM is the top FM station in the Evening and Weekends shifts. Nova and Triple M are equal on 5.4%. 2Day had a small rise to 3.5%. 2UE slipped to 2.5% and the sports stations SEN and SKY both fell fractionally despite it being Caufield Cup season (but the Melbourne Cup was not included in this survey).



  • #1FM is Gold
  • 3AW is #1AM
  • Top FM breakfast show Gold
  • Top AM breakfast show 3AW
  • Top FM Drive show Gold
  • Top AM Drive show 3AW



Gold has been at the top of the FM market for 12 consecutive surveys now, steady at 10.9% this book. Christian O’Connell’s Gold breakfast show slipped by 0.8 to 8.6%, but still remains the #1 FM breakfast show. Gold dominated the 40-54 demographic and was strong in all daytime timeslots. Nova had the #2FM breakfast show.

3AW increased its lead in the market, scoring 18.9% as the top AM station. The station’s breakfast and mornings shows have a clear lead over all other stations and the breakfast show has now had 228 consecutive wins.

Smallzy’s Surgery is the #1FM night show in the market. Fox fell most this survey, down 1.1 to 5.5%, losing share across all daytime shifts. SEN Sports lost 0.6 during the AFL Grand Final and Trade period, slipping 0.6 to 3.1%



  • #1 FM goes to Nova
  • #1AM is 4KQ
  • Top FM breakfast show Nova
  • Top AM breakfast show 4KQ
  • Top FM Drive show Nova
  • Top AM Drive show 4KQ



97.3FM had the biggest gain this survey, up 1.7 share points to 11.0% with its best results since 2019, in a close third place behind Nova and 4KQ.

Nova had the top breakfast show with Ash, Kip, Lutty & Susie O’Neill scoring 13.1% in that timeslot. Kip Wightman has now left the show as we revealed last month.  4KQ’s breakfast with Laurel Gary and Mark was second in the breakfast timeslot.

Nine Radio’s 4BC and 4BC swapped frequencies during the survey, resulting in a slight gain for talk station 4BC and a drop for music station 4BH.

Nova had the top drive show with Kate Tim and Joel scoring 15.1%, fractionally down by 0.1 from last survey.



  • Mix is #1FM
  • ABC Adelaide #1AM
  • Top FM breakfast show Triple M
  • Top AM breakfast show ABC Adelaide
  • Top FM Drive show Nova
  • Top AM Drive show ABC adelaide


ABC Adelaide won breakfast, Mix won mornings and afternoons, Nova won Drive, FIVEaa won evenings and Cruise won weekends.

Nova was dominant in the under 40 demographics, Mix won 40-64s and ABC Adelaide won the over 65s.



  • Nova #1FM
  • 6PR #1 AM
  • Top FM breakfast show Nova
  • Top AM breakfast show ABC Perth
  • Top FM Drive show Nova
  • Top AM Drive show 6PR


Nova won breakfast ahead of Mix then ABC Perth. During the survey ABC Breakfast presenter Russell Woolf sadly passed away.

96fm won Mornings, Mix and Nova tied for dominance of the Afternoon timeslot, Nova won drive and Weekends and ABC Perth won evenings.

Nova won the 10-17 , 25-39 and 40-54 demographic, triple j won 18-24s, 96fm won 55-64s and ABC Perth won the over 65s.


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Recent comments (11)
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9 Nov 2021 - 10:21 am

Why is there a photo of Hit studio when it’s about WSFM and KIIS?

    Staff Writer
    9 Nov 2021 - 10:42 am

    Eagle eye! Grabbed a quick pic while editing the photo collage… you noticed, you win the prize.
    How’s this one now? No longer confused?

9 Nov 2021 - 12:15 pm

Smooth is paying the price for changing their format and playing boring safe 80s and 90s songs, instead of their original “smooth” hits from the 60s to now. They have no point of difference anymore. When you’re getting beaten by WS you’re doing something wrong. Also what’s the deal with their DAB stations? Smooth Relax should at least be national, but in Brisbane they only have Smooth 80s…. Which sounds exactly the same as all the other 80s stations on DAB. Poor decisions.

9 Nov 2021 - 1:22 pm

Why do we continue dividing results into AM and FM, rather than simply listening?

Something tells me it is driven by those in the industry who remain uncomfortable with the dominance of AM in our two biggest cities. In both Sydney and Melbourne the number 1 FM comes in at third spot, while in Brisbane, our third biggest market, AM music station 4KQ, is a solid number 2.

Claims to the contrary notwithstanding, AM is doing very nicely. Cruise 1323 in Adelaide is another solid AM music performer.

It’s like the hype surrounding Kyle and Jackie O. Reality is they rate a distant third behind Fordham on 2GB and ABC Sydney. On the one fleeting occasion they beat Ben, you’d have thought they’d knocked off Howard Stern when reading the media releases.

When K&J dropped in the following survey, the news was somewhat more subdued.

I’ve said before and it bears repeating, thinking AM is not hip in no way obfuscates its obvious and ongoing success. Dividing survey results into number 1 FM and AM seeks to dilute the overall success of top rating stations.

Irrespective of transmission mode, this is radio and should be presented as such.

9 Nov 2021 - 3:29 pm

Kip has already left Nova 106.9 breakfast.

    Staff Writer
    9 Nov 2021 - 3:34 pm

    Thanks D, updated 🙂

9 Nov 2021 - 5:41 pm

Don’t think new strategy for 2DayFM (Sorry, new2DayFM) is working. Don’t get me wrong, I love listening oldskool music but not everyday! They went all the way into Oldskool direction. “The music you love from 90s till now” hmmm…. Playing A-ha, Toto…more 80s!!! than current hits… How many times you can play Shania Twain, Roxette, Pink….

Alan Partridge
9 Nov 2021 - 8:23 pm

Could you get an older pic of K&J?

    Staff Writer
    9 Nov 2021 - 9:24 pm

    Ha ha… we stuck to the official ones, but next time we need one of Kyle at his disheveled best we will use a more current one 🙂

10 Nov 2021 - 9:55 am

What’s going on at Fox Melbourne? Breakfast now rating the same as the KIIS show

11 Nov 2021 - 10:07 am

I agree with Chris. Why split it into AM and FM?

4KQ is AM and music, as is Cruise. They aren’t competing with 4BC and 5AA they’re competing with the FM’s. It makes no sense at all.

Oh and by the way, I listen to 4KQ all the time but haven’t listened to “AM” for ages – I listen to it on this new fangled thing called…… DAB+. Which makes the AM/FM thing even more ridiculous.


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