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By Mike Kinosian
LOS ANGELES— This is the industry’s most extensive and comprehensive overview of a “Holiday” ratings sweep and, of course, it’s for adult contemporary – the format leading the way for the all-Christmas music programming strategy.
While some hot AC, classic hits-oldies, contemporary Christian, country, and urban AC outlets engage in wall-to-wall Christmas music, adult contemporary was the originator and, by an overwhelming majority, it remains the most common proponent.
Not every adult contemporary station listed here, however, plays all-Christmas music during “Holiday” sweeps and, as you’ll see, some ACs register a December 2016 – “Holiday” 2016 decline. Whether or not they program all-Christmas music roughly between Thanksgiving and Christmas Day, adult contemporary facilities that rank in the top 20 in a PPM-market (6+, “Holiday” 2016) comprise the following scoreboards.
Another parameter is that Nielsen Audio only releases audience estimates for stations that subscribe to its services. Owing to that reason, ratings information in this “Holiday” 2016 report are limited to stations that pay Nielsen Audio for its data.
In “Holiday” 2016, an adult contemporary station is #1 (6+) in nearly eight of every ten PPM-markets (79%) and one AC outlet has once again reached the 20-share threshold (6+).
Especially noteworthy as well are the format’s “Holiday” 2015 – “Holiday” 2016 stats.
To add perspective throughout this analysis, we are including several “Rewind” ratings comparisons from previous “Holiday” sweeps.