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Thread: Radio markets you think should be merged or altered

  1. #1

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    Radio markets you think should be merged or altered

    Any radio markets that you think should me merged or altered as far as geography is concerned?

    Personally, I think Mobile/Pensacola and Colorado Springs/Pueblo should both be merged. Basically every FM in both sets of markets can be heard in most or all of both markets in question. It can also be argued that Akron and Canton could be merged, and that the Manchester market could be expanded to include the Concord area, along with western Rockingham County (which is currently included in the absurdly large Portsmouth market*). Any others that you can think of?

    * I could rant about the Portsmouth market’s size FOREVER. Portsmouth is much smaller than Manchester (20,000 people vs. 110,000) and yet the Portsmouth market is basically double the size of the Manchester one. Nielsen supposedly bases their market definitions on commuting/listening patterns, but I highly doubt anyone from the western parts of the county listen to anything other than Manchester and Boston stations (with the exception of WOKQ). Same goes for commuting.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tomgsinger View Post
    Any radio markets that you think should me merged or altered as far as geography is concerned?

    Personally, I think Mobile/Pensacola and Colorado Springs/Pueblo should both be merged. Basically every FM in both sets of markets can be heard in most or all of both markets in question. It can also be argued that Akron and Canton could be merged, and that the Manchester market could be expanded to include the Concord area, along with western Rockingham County (which is currently included in the absurdly large Portsmouth market*). Any others that you can think of?

    * I could rant about the Portsmouth market’s size FOREVER. Portsmouth is much smaller than Manchester (20,000 people vs. 110,000) and yet the Portsmouth market is basically double the size of the Manchester one. Nielsen supposedly bases their market definitions on commuting/listening patterns, but I highly doubt anyone from the western parts of the county listen to anything other than Manchester and Boston stations (with the exception of WOKQ). Same goes for commuting.
    For existing markets to be combined, there are certain population criteria that have to be met that involve traffic patterns, etc. But beyond that, the stations that are subscribed in each market get to vote on a consolidation and if the vote is negative, the consolidation does not happen.

    In 1981, subscribers in the Miami market and the Ft Lauderdale one voted and approved making Dade and Broward counties the new metro.

    But around the same time, the Riverside-San Bernardino market and the LA market was considered for combination. The majority of subscribers voted against the combination and the idea was abandoned.

    On the other hand, counties not part of a metro may be added, and counties in a metro may be dropped if listening and commute patterns change.
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  3. #3

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    Traverse City-Petoskey-Cadillac is absurdly large (12 counties and over 100 miles north-south at its longest) and most of the stations don't cover the entire market. The market was expanded a few years ago to add (IIRC) Cheboygan, Manistee, Missaukee, and Wexford counties. The latter three were likely added at the request of WTCM-FM, which is absolutely dominant in those three counties (side note: their tower is actually in northern Wexford County although it's always been licensed to Traverse City; 'TCM is also dominant in Lake County [almost by default as it's the only commercial station to put a 60dBu signal over most of the county] while not as dominant in Mason and Osceola counties)

  4. #4
    Elaborating a little on what David said, there has been a push to consolidate the Columbia and Jefferson City, MO markets since KCMQ moved to the KRCG TV tower in New Bloomfield in either 1999 or 2000. On the surface, it makes a lot of sense. The two are in adjacent counties only a 35 mile drive apart (and quite-a-bit closer as the crow flies). Plus, a lot of state workers live in Columbia while working in Jefferson City, and businesses in Columbia have people who drive in from Jefferson City on an almost daily basis.

    The problem, however, is that, aside from one company, no one else has more than two stations that reliably cover both cities. During my brief stay at Zimmer, they frequently blamed Premier Radio for torpedoing the consolidation of the two markets. However, having also worked for Premier, it was hard to blame them for opposing the consolidation. Only KPLA 101.5 and KOQL 106.1 reliably covered both markets on all radios. The remaining five stations in the cluster wouldn't likely have amounted to a hill of beans in the combined market. Plus, you had other owners, like Benne (for whom I've also worked), whose target audience was one market or the other, and the former Contemporary Media had one station that covered both quite reliably with a C2 FM and a tower halfway between the two cities in Ashland while having another that covered Jefferson City and south. At most, two AM's covered both cities, and, after sunset, all bets were off there, too.

    I was never convinced combining the markets would've done Zimmer much good either. Zimmer certainly had more stations, but it had a handful that covered one or the other, and it routinely ran into the problem of KCLR-FM 99.3 being wildly popular in Columbia while being ignored in Jefferson City. Its other country station, KATI 94.3, had the exact opposite problem, and it didn't put a consistent signal into all of Columbia. Consolidation, it seemed to me, would only have been a significant benefit to Zimmer's KTXY and KCMQ.

  5. #5
    Are Savannah GA and Hilton Head SC even still markets? if so they shouldn't be separate.

  6. #6

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    I get a kick out of "Muncie-Marion", Indiana. The 2 big towns have nothing to do with each otder.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by ftballfan View Post
    Traverse City-Petoskey-Cadillac is absurdly large (12 counties and over 100 miles north-south at its longest) and most of the stations don't cover the entire market. The market was expanded a few years ago to add (IIRC) Cheboygan, Manistee, Missaukee, and Wexford counties. The latter three were likely added at the request of WTCM-FM, which is absolutely dominant in those three counties (side note: their tower is actually in northern Wexford County although it's always been licensed to Traverse City; 'TCM is also dominant in Lake County [almost by default as it's the only commercial station to put a 60dBu signal over most of the county] while not as dominant in Mason and Osceola counties)
    Again, listening patterns have to match the Nielsen (or Arbitron) procedures for a county to be added or removed. Nielsen revises every market each year to see if they are in conformity with the rules.


    OVERVIEW
    Metro Redefinition refreshes a radio market’s primary
    mercantile area, or Metro, to ensure that the Metro geography
    appropriately reflects the marketplace for survey
    measurement. Nielsen evaluates listening patterns and
    commuting flows from existing Metro and contiguous counties
    to generate a new Metro definition within policy requirements.
    A description of the review criteria, process and how a Metro
    Redefinition is formalized is provided. We developed this
    method in collaboration with a cross-functional team within
    Nielsen as well as with input from the Nielsen Audio Advisory
    Council.
    CRITERIA FOR ADDING OR REMOVING A
    COUNTY (70 POINT CRITERION)
    These are the criteria used to determine if a county may be
    added to or removed from a Radio Metro:
    ● The county is contiguous to a county within the Metro or a
    current Metro county and;
    ● The sum of listening and commuting 1 percentages to
    Metro counties must equal at least 70 and,
    ● At least 55% of listening reported in the county during the
    previous year’s Spring and Fall Diary surveys or the
    previous year’s April, May, June and October, November,
    December PPM report periods, are credited to Metro
    stations 2 .
    CRITERIA FOR ADDING A COUNTY WITH
    HIGHER LISTENING (100 POINT CRITERION)
    These are the criteria used to determine if a county may be
    added to a Radio Metro:
    ● The county is contiguous to a county within the Metro
    and;
    ● The sum of listening and commuting 1 percentages to
    Metro counties must equal at least 100 and,
    ● At least 75% of listening reported in the county during the
    previous year’s Spring and Fall Diary surveys or the
    previous year’s April, May, June and October, November,
    December PPM report periods, are credited to Metro
    stations 2 .
    PROCESS
    We assist clients by providing commuting and listening data
    pertinent to the metron New data is available in May annually.
    As part of the redefinition analysis, Nielsen calculates an
    In-Tab goal based on Metro rank, report type and frequency of
    measurement.
    Only after careful evaluation of this report should a client
    consider seeking local Client consensus. At which time, all
    local clients will vote and submit a contract addendum (called
    the “Request Form for Formal Metro Redefinition Evaluation”).
    Submitting and signing this form is required and binds the
    requesting parties to all the requirements and outcomes of
    each evaluation. Subscriber 3 votes are tallied for counties
    added and/or removed, where 75% of subscribers must agree
    to each county addition or removal meeting the 70 Point
    Criterion and 66% must agree to each county addition
    meeting the 100 Point Criterion for implementation. Client
    Consensus deadlines (market change deadlines) are in April
    and October annually.
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