Windsor stations
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Thread: Windsor stations

  1. #1

    Windsor stations

    I assume CKLW, CKWW, The River, & 89X have disappeared from the Nielsen report because Bell Media stopped subscribing (they had been consistently showing up for years). Blackburn has its three stations in Windsor but never subscribed. Since there are no reliable numbers, do these Windsor stations make any impact among Michigan listeners?

  2. #2

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    Absolutely. CKLW, 93.9, and CIMX all had Michigan sales offices (and studios in some cases). They have reduced CanCon requirements because they are one of the few Canadian markets that deal with city-grade US signals from a much larger market in their area (and far less financial/regulatory burdens to boot).

    They all had US based satellite offices because at one point or another, because all 3 of those stations have had a reasonable amount of success across the river at some point in their lives. It doesn’t help that they were co-owned and had a comparable signal to the Detroit stations (the FMs run at double the power of their comparable US counterparts).

    They (mostly 89X) still get ratings in Michigan and even Toledo, OH. They have found with the advent of streaming, combined with very burdensome financial and regulatory components the CRTC has somewhat recently imposed, makes trying to sell ads to the US more difficult than its worth to set up offices in two countries/two financial books/etc.

    As a matter of fact, I think the only “border blasters” that still attempt to advertise to an audience across the border are US stations that appeal to a mostly Canadian audience in a much larger town (PBS stations and a few radio stations in upstate NY/VT are the only ones that come to mind).
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by 50kguy View Post
    I assume CKLW, CKWW, The River, & 89X have disappeared from the Nielsen report because Bell Media stopped subscribing (they had been consistently showing up for years). Blackburn has its three stations in Windsor but never subscribed. Since there are no reliable numbers, do these Windsor stations make any impact among Michigan listeners?
    Based on a rolling average of 3 books, CIDR had a 1.6, CIMX a 1.5 ns CKWW a 0.5. CKLW was a no-show. That put the highest rated station at around 20th in the market in 12+
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  4. #4

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    I believe whatever sales offices Bell had in Detroit have closed. (CKLW's sales office from the top 40 days-which was a separate company called CKLW Radio Sales, Inc., closed in the early 80s). Unlike their top 40 heyday, CKLW exclusively targets Windsor and Southwest Ontario. There may be Detroit listeners to Coast to Coast AM and Clark Howard, but not enough to make a dent. CKWW is more or less a throwaway tribute to The Big 8.

    Curious though if the Detroit stations (radio or TV) even acknowledge Windsor's existence as a quasi-cross-horder suburb. Is there no cross-border commuting or commerce?

  5. #5

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    There’s commuting, commerce, and all the like (last time I checked, the Detroit-Windsor bridge crossing was one of the busiest border checkpoints in the US). The problem comes mostly with the separate countries and how they tax revenue in cross-border advertising. There are some unique aspects to the Detroit-Windsor market as well.

    Used to be, back in the day, there was a significant advantage to US stations broadcasting to a Canadian audience...primarily regulatory (even in its heyday the FCC was still a way easier beast to tame than what’s now the CTRC), but also tax and expense revenue.


    For the situation regarding Windsor-Detroit, there are two things that have contributed to the unique situation where Canadian stations are players in a major US market: Geography (you can broadcast from Canada and still have as good of, or better, of a signal than your US counterparts) and the overall prosperity of the market. Detroit used to be a major metro in the US — even after the city of Detroit was generally vacated in the 80s-90s, the suburbs still prospered.

    In the 2000’s, Windsor started getting more FM and TV stations shoehorned in to that fairly narrow peninsula (negating some of the need to listen to, or advertise on, Detroit stations). The metro of Detroit suffered greatly in the 2008 recession which dried up a lot of suburban ad money on the larger, US side of the market. The much smaller Windsor side in Canada has done fairly well considering its location.

    Combine the the situations mentioned above, and you have a situation where in reality, Detroit and Windsor stations don’t bother to acknowledge the audience on the other side (save for PBS and major breaking news) because financially they don’t need to. The Windsor stations are content catering to Ontario these days.
    Last edited by seattlesarchiebunker; 08-06-2018 at 12:24 AM.
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  6. #6
    Up in the Twin Saults, the radio stations do serve both sides of the border, but there are exactly zero TV stations carried on cable in both Sault Michigan and Sault Ontario (both do get CBC via satellite, however, Sault Michigan gets CBMT while Sault Ontario gets CBLT).

    The Windsor stations (88.7 and 93.9) have the advantage of being able to pump out 100kW while the Detroit stations are generally limited to 50kW or less (95.5 and 104.3 run grandfathered power)

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    The power differential doesn't mean a lot in the grand scheme of things, and if I recall correctly CIDR suffers from terrain shielding issues on the Detroit side. To top that off, Candadian stations aren't entitled to protection on U.S. soil and vice versa. Someone could be licensed on 93.9 close to Detroit, and as long as the predicted coverage doesn't touch Canadian soil, CIDR and CIMX can be interfered with

  8. #8
    I would like to add that in a fair number of the radials toward Metro Detroit, that 88.7 & 93.9 only send about 50 kW - 60 kW equivalent of power.

    The most prosperous of the high population suburbs are to the north and northwest of downtown Detroit. The TX sites of CIDR-FM, CBE-FM (non-commercial) and CIMX are all located about 13 to 15 miles south of downtown Detroit. The only place where they enjoy a signal advantage is in the gritty, working class downriver suburbs.

    In the more affluent northern suburbs, the "Big Three" Canadian FMs (88.7, 89.9 and 93.9) have a noticeably weaker signal indoors than virtually every Detroit-based Class B station. Along Interstate 696 in SE Oakland County, which is one of the most heavily traveled stretches of freeway in the region, 93.9's signal is flat out terrible on many radios for about a three or four mile stretch due to intermod issues.

    Crawford Broadcasting - slum lords of the FM band - have a translator at 96.7 MHz that virtually destroys the coverage Leamington's CHYR-FM previously enjoyed across much of Metro Detroit. Many areas now get a mixing of the two signals, with neither being listenable in a moving vehicle. This is perfectly legal, though, as the Crawford translator does not interfere with CHYR on Canadian soil.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by gr8oldies View Post


    Curious though if the Detroit stations (radio or TV) even acknowledge Windsor's existence as a quasi-cross-horder suburb. Is there no cross-border commuting or commerce?
    Lots of commerce, but commuting is pretty complicated now that they require a passport
    to cross the border. When I lived in Michigan in the late 80's people went back and forth on
    the spur of a moment for dinner, etc. Detroit and Windsor are each pretty self-contained when
    it comes to local news coverage.

    Some days I can get 89X on certain hilltops here in Pittsburgh if the wind
    is blowing just right.
    Last edited by FreddyE1977; 08-10-2018 at 03:50 PM. Reason: revise and extend my remarks

  10. #10
    There are still US based ads on all of these stations. To the extent that agencies will advertise on these stations, there is no need for a US office because they know how to reach the business office in Windsor. In the case of CKLW, it serves as the clearance for several US based syndicated shows, Clark Howard, Into Tomorrow and Coast to Coast among them for the Detroit market and these bring US ads with them.

    Hardly a need for a physical sales office when so much business is conducted electronically now anyway.

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