March 2020 PPM Analysis: News/Talk | TALKERS magazine - talk media trade : TALKERS magazine – “The bible of talk media.”

March 2020 PPM Analysis: News/Talk

| April 29, 2020

By Mike Kinosian
Managing Editor

LOS ANGELES — Our four-part series of March 2020 ratings recaps concludes with a detailed overview of news/talk.

Included in this thorough synopsis are all commercial, English-language news/talk outlets (including online streams, if applicable) that appeared in any of Nielsen Audio’s 48 PPM-markets during the March 2020 ratings period (February 27 – March 25).

Coronavirus-Related Impact: Based on analysis of stations meeting our ratings criteria, there is absolutely no doubt that – among all-news; news/talk; and public radio news/talk – all-news is the clear-cut (6+) February 2020 – March 2020 winner.

Every all-news station in our sample registers a (6+) month-to-month uptick, with the average increase a healthy +.92 (6+), and the typical all-news outlet ranks eighth (#8.0, 6+).

While essentially three of every four news/talk outlets improved (54%) or remained even (20%) month-to-month, that was the lowest success rate among the three aforementioned spoken-word formats.

At the same time, however, it should be noted that the news/talk panel is 6.5 times greater than its all-news counterpart and just over twice the size of public radio news/talk.

As far as year-to-year results are concerned, nearly four of every five (78%) all-news operations gained or held steady, versus 71% (news/talk) and 61% (public radio news/talk).

Albeit that March 2019 – March 2020 combined up and flat totals aren’t as lofty as those for February 2020 – March 2020, typical year-to-year increases are especially noteworthy. Specifically, they are +1.40 (all-news) and +1.06 (both news/talk and public radio news/talk). Furthermore, nearly half the news/talk year-to-year bumps (48.5%) are by at least one full-share.

Unless otherwise noted, information for each news/talk station and stream was factored into all of our highlighted charts.

Email managing editor Mike Kinosian at

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Category: Analysis