Ryan Tubridy among biggest losers as RTÉ Radio One suffers drop in listenership across board
Newstalk’s Breakfast with Ciara Kelly and Shane Coleman gained 5,000 listeners to bring the show to 152,000
RTÉ Radio One has suffered a loss in listenership across all of its flagship shows, new figures reveal.
All of its weekday programmes have shed thousands of listeners, according to the latest Joint National Listenership Research (JNLR) figures, while its sister station 2FM has experienced some growth.
The drop-off in listeners is significant when compared to the last JNLR released on November 10.
Morning Ireland has lost 17,000 listeners from the previous book and now stands at 433,000 while Ryan Tubridy has shed 13,000 listeners and is now at 331,000.
Today with Claire Byrne is down 10,000 in the latest survey with 321,000 listeners while News At One has 310,000 – a drop of 15,000.
Ronan Collins’ 12pm music show shed 11,000 and now sits at 222,000. The veteran broadcaster stepped down from the show just before Christmas and it is now presented by Louise Duffy.
Even Joe Duffy’s Liveline programme suffered a drop, losing 11,000 listeners to now stand at 310,000.
Ray D’Arcy’s afternoon programme looks like it has started to even out with 177,000 listeners – a drop of just 2,000.
The station’s current affairs evening programme, Drivetime, which is co-presented by Sarah McInerney and Cormac Ó hEadhra, lost 4,000 listeners and now stands at 208,000.
Head of RTÉ Radio 1, Peter Woods, said he was expecting a drop across listenership and that the national broadcaster might need to revert “back to basics”.
“Some of what we’re looking at here is comparable to the numbers we had before Covid, it looks like we’re back in that space,” he told Independent.ie.
“Audiences for programmes like Claire Byrne, Ryan and Morning Ireland, they’re still massive numbers anyway.
“I was expecting a drop, I think some of this is dissatisfaction with news in general. We also know from the underlying figures that our 20 to 45s in that demographic are way up, so there’s a lot of things happening.
“That’s probably the future and maybe what’s happening, is the people we would have seen as our traditional listeners are listening less.
“When something like this happens, we have to look at everything and that’s what we’ll do, maybe we’ll have to go back to basics again.”
RTÉ 2FM’s Breakfast Show, hosted by Doireann Garrihy, Donncha O'Callaghan and Carl Mullan, has experienced an increase in listenership to reach 129,000, a jump of 5,000.
Jennifer Zamparelli’s show now stands at 134,000, an increase of 3,000 listeners, while Tracy Clifford has shed 4,000 and is at 116,000. The 2 Johnnies’ slot stands at 119,000 – a drop of 3,000.
Head of RTÉ 2FM, Dan Healy, hailed the success of the breakfast slot and is confident that the station is “winning the morning”.
Mr Healy said he believes 2FM is “very well set” for the year ahead.
“Breakfast will be two years on air in May, we’re very happy with the level of consistency that show has. What they’re done over the last couple of months is actually remarkable,” he told Independent.ie.
“They have a very good producer called Grace, it’s a really strong show and we’re seeing significant growth.
“Sometimes friendships on air can be contrived, they have on-air chemistry but not off air, these three are absolute pals.
“You can hear it and Grace is one of the four and they’re as tight as could be. It’s a really strong team and they’re flying it. We’ve a thing in radio that says you need to win the morning to win the day.
“We’ve got a breakfast show now that we think is going to last quite a while so that’s very exciting for everyone here.”
Today FM is the only station which has enjoyed an increase in listenership across all of its shows.
TheIan Dempsey Breakfast Show is at 203,000 listeners, an increase of 4,000, while Pamela Joyce, who recently marked one year on lunchtimes, welcomed 4,000 new listeners in the latest survey, bringing her audience to 134,000.
The Last Word with Matt Cooper now entertains a drive-time audience of 172,000, which is an increase of 8,000.
Mr Cooper said: “Given that so much changed in people's work patterns during 2022 we're thrilled that it seems that all of the new listeners we gained when they were at home during Covid seem to have stuck with us on the return to the workplace.
“It shows radio can be enjoyed wherever you are”.
Meanwhile Dermot & Dave continue to grow with an increase of 9,000, bringing their audience to 207,000.
The duo said they don’t take themselves too seriously but are “serious about keeping our audience happy”.
“We couldn’t be happier with the figures today. It’s always been a pleasure to see so many people join us and enjoy spending time with us,” they said.
Since joining afternoons on Today FM just 12 months ago, the latest figures show that theRay Foley Show now has 160,000 listeners, an increase of 11,000 on book.
It was a mixed result for Newstalk with The Pat Kenny Show down 3,000 to 174,000 while Lunchtime Live is down 2,000 to 106,000.
Newstalk’s Breakfast with Ciara Kelly and Shane Coleman has gained 5,000 listeners to bring the show to 152,000, an all-time high for that slot while Moncrieff has added 6,000 listeners to reach 96,000. The Hard Shoulder is up 3,000 to stand at 159,000.
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