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A ‘WOW’ Moment!

I’ve been with Yorkshire Coast Radio since the very first day the station took to the air. That was back in November 1993, which anyone good with numbers will tell you is getting close to 25 years.

There’s been some memorable moments along the way. Some special moments. None quite as special as the one this week.

On Thursday the radio industry received the latest audience figures from RAJAR. I have explained in a previous blog why it is a big thing for a commercial radio station like ourselves. There’s a lot riding on it. We receive the figures electronically at a set time. Opening the file to reveal the results is one of those stomach churning moments that nobody really enjoys. The headline figures appear in front of you, as you hope and pray they are good ones.

What appeared in front of my eyes this time took a few moments to sink in. One of the key figures for all radio stations in the Weekly Reach. This is presented as a percentage of the population you broadcast to, and also as a number of listeners in thousands.

Yorkshire Coast Radio has always been fairly consistent with its audience stats. Six months ago we had a Weekly Reach of 47%. Last quarter it climbed to 48%, the highest of any station in England. 12 months ago it was 42%, so as you can see, our figures had been going in the right direction.

The figure in front on my eyes though needed a second glance. We had just achieved a Weekly Reach of 53%. We had always thought “what if” we could get to 50%. We had just done that, and smashed it. 53% of the area’s population were tuning in to Yorkshire Coast Radio every week, not only the highest percentage reach in England, but now the UK.

I won’t tell you the words that followed once it had sunk in. They’re not words we use on the radio! We had achieved something quite unique and the look on the faces in the office, from the team that have worked so hard to achieve this, is something that will stay with me for a long time.

A 53% Weekly Reach is a huge endorsement of what we do. More people than ever before… 59,200 to be precise, are tuning in each week. This is great news for our advertisers, who can be confident that their message is been heard by so many people. No other advertising medium in the area is able to reach such a large number of people.

If you have a local business and you’ve not tried radio to market it, do get in touch. We love working with local businesses to deliver successful solutions. It would be great to have a chat to see what we can do for you.

Figuring it all out…

Four times a year the radio industry receives its health check when RAJAR, the official body in charge of measuring radio audiences in the UK delivers the quarterly listening data to radio stations up and down the country.

It’s that moment when you find out if what you are doing is proving to be a hit with your listeners. It’s a big deal, especially for commercial radio stations, as a bad set of figures can have an impact on advertising revenue.

This week we received the data for the period up to the 17th December 2017.

In this digital age, with more stations to choose from than ever before, including a couple of new stations local to North Yorkshire launching in the last 18 months, we can’t be complacent. We have worked hard to make sure we are providing the best radio station we can for the area, with the hope that people will choose us to listen to above the competition.

I am delighted to say that our figures were good. A 10% increase in the number of weekly listeners is a huge seal of approval to what we do. Now a whopping 52,500 adults tune in to Yorkshire Coast Radio each week, which is 47% of the area’s population. Incidentally, a weekly reach of 47% is the highest of any radio station in England, and an achievement we are very proud of.

There was further confirmation of our appeal with a 23% increase in the length of time spent listening. Total listening hours now stand at almost half a million hours a week, and as a result of the increase in reach and hours, our share of all radio listening rose to 19.7%

Yorkshire Coast Radio maintains its position as the number one radio station in the area, with the lead over BBC Radio 2 growing. The chart below shows radio listening in the Yorkshire Coast Radio total survey area. ‘Other Radio’ is stations that are not surveyed by RAJAR, but which respondents said they listened to.

Weekly Reach

It’s reassuring to know that the hard work of the team here is both enjoyed and appreciated by a growing number of people. We strive hard every day to provide the best local news and information, and to be entertaining and engaging and play a mix of great songs.

Our growing audience is great news for local businesses choosing to work with us. No other local radio station in the area can reach as many ears as Yorkshire Coast Radio does!

Should you consider radio advertising?

Does radio advertising really work?  Is it something you should consider? These are certainly valid questions in a world where you have more advertising choice than ever before, so lets consider the facts.

Radio is now accessible in more ways than ever before with 9 in 10 people tuning in each week, some via traditional FM/AM platforms, others using DAB or digital streaming online and even via apps.  Whatever method of listening they choose, what is clear is that the radio audience is incredibly strong and very loyal.  Nowhere is this more clear than with local radio and right here, serving the towns of Whitby, Scarborough, Filey and Bridlington, is one of the strongest local radio stations in the whole of England.

According to RAJAR the independant body responsible for researching and publishing audience data, Yorkshire Coast Radio is listened to by a massive 43% of the local population every week.  More staggering still is that in total 82,000 adults (3 in 4 people) listen to the station over a 13 week period.

Yorkshire Coast Radio is wholly owned by the UKRD Group, who believe in giving their stations local autonomy.  Chris Sigsworth, Managing Director, believes this has played an important part in the station’s success.

"More and more across the UK we are seeing commercial radio groups sharing more and more programming, with local content featuring less and less. I am proud to be part of a group that understands the important role local radio plays in the lives of listeners. Instead of cutting back on local content, we are able to invest in our local news and be at the heart of everything going on in the local area. It’s this focus that gives the listeners a sense of ownership, and wins their loyalty."

– Chris Sigsworth, Managing Director of Yorkshire Coast Radio

The station has also reported a 100% increase in its online audience with over 3 million sessions and 8 million pages views on over the last year.  This is evidence the station has a huge following.

So what does this mean for the local business owner?

In short it demonstrates that radio can play a vital role in promoting a business, its products and services particularly in a local market place.  Who wouldn’t want to advertise their business to everyone living locally?

Radio is known for being trusted, it is also, in a world where we increasing consume content “on demand”, one of the truly current and in fact live advertising mediums, meaning you can react quickly to changes in your business or opportunities.  Perhaps one of its biggest assets is that this media has huge reach of local people and they tune in for hours and hours each week meaning your advertising message will be heard again and again.  Those jingles may at times irritate but wow they stick in your head!

The radio industry body Radiocentre published a report that demonstrates radio advertising delivers on average a whopping £7.70 return on every pound invested.  You can view that report and other radio effectiveness research here.

So maybe 2018 is the year that, if you haven’t already, you put radio advertising to the test.  I reckon you’ll be glad you did!

You can access exclusive offers for new advertisers on Yorkshire Coast Radio here and if you want some more information on what kind of advertising is available and who currently uses the station then here might be the place to start your research.

Whatever you do, we wish you a hugely successful 2018!

More than just a radio station

Just over 24 years ago I was lucky enough to be involved with the launch of something new and exciting in Scarborough that was going to make a difference to the lives of so many people.

It was the 7th November 1993, and I was a presenter on Yorkshire Coast Radio’s very first day of broadcasting. Suddenly the town had its very own commercial radio station. Something new and different to listen to and engage with, and a new way for businesses to promote themselves.

Back in 1993 nobody quite knew just how popular Yorkshire Coast Radio would become. It wasn’t long before half of the area’s population were tuning in every week, and businesses were feeling the benefit that this new form of advertising could achieve for them.

Quickly, coverage was extended to Whitby, and then Bridlington, uniting the towns and giving the area its identity.

My presenting days are long over (“hurray!” some will say), as in recent years I have been proud to lead the business, and the great team that make it, in the role of Managing Director.

It’s only when you pause to reflect on 24 years that you realise how much has changed. That said, some things have stayed the same.

Yorkshire Coast Radio is, first and foremost, known for what comes out of the speakers. What we aim to deliver today is not too different to back in 1993. Local news and information, that is both relevant and engaging, mixed with an entertaining mix of conversation and great songs.

Today however, the Yorkshire Coast Radio brand is about more than what comes out of the speakers. It’s about delivering that great local content on whatever platform someone chooses to consume it. Our content today is enjoyed by people online, on social media and on their mobile phones or tablet. Some people will enjoy and engage with what we do without ever turning on a radio, though I am delighted to say that huge numbers still do.

‘Radio’ advertising was new to the area back in 1993. Prior to Yorkshire Coast Radio’s launch the only effective medium to advertise had been the local papers. Over the years we have become known and trusted for delivering great campaigns on the radio that work.

Fast-forward to 2017 and the traditional advertising platforms such as TV, press and radio have been joined by the digital revolution. Never before has there been such a choice, each with their own benefits. For a small to medium business it can be baffling to know what to do, and how to do it.

We have the solution.

Yorkshire Coast Radio Solutions is the commercial arm of Yorkshire Coast Radio. A team of people with experience in all areas of marketing. We create multi-platform campaigns that work for your business. We create websites, video, audio and design. We deliver digital display advertising, press advertising and of course radio advertising.

Times have changed. If you’re still doing what you’ve always done, you could be missing out.

Take a look around the Yorkshire Coast Radio Solutions website, and talk to our team about the solution we have to grow your business.