Friday, March 31, 2006

Metro & Edison: Listeners Turn UP Your Traffic Reports

If your traffic reporter feels under-appreciated, not a full member of your drivetime team and doesn't approach prep for their reports with anything less than 100% focus and commitment, click on the following and remind him or her just how important the info they deliver potentially is to your listener:

Traffic reports pull people away from CD players, MP3 players and Satellite Radio.

* One in four respondents listened to something other than radio in their cars, but then switched back to AM/FM radio specifically to hear traffic reports.

* Note to country stations: those with exceptionally long commutes (that tends to be OUR audience) report an even greater propensity to switch to AM/FM radio for traffic reports.

* More than 90% of radio traffic listeners pay close attention to traffic reports.

Tom Webster, Vice President of Edison Media Research: "Clearly, traffic reports are extremely 'sticky' content for radio listeners, (who) .. know where to find localized traffic reports, especially in suburban areas, and rely on them to help them navigate their increasingly longer commutes."

Jaye's traffic pet peeve: "everything's looking good this morning and there are no accidents or problems." Imagine turning your radio up and encountering what might be called a 'self-cancelling traffic report'! Talk about a total loss of credibility in an instant!

That would be like starting a newscast with the words "there's no news at all today."

If you're going to do the traffic report, please (at the very least) describe in specific detail with picturesque language what it's like in traffic right now. If you don't have the tools to do that, get them.

The Edison Metro Traffic Study was conducted by random telephone sampling February 9 - 22, 2006 of Adults 25 - 54 evenly distributed throughout the non-metro counties in 10 of the top 20 DMAs. Respondents were required to have at least a part-time job, work primarily outside of the home, and spend at least 30 minutes commuting one-way to their workplace via a personal vehicle. This study was conducted on behalf of Westwood One's Metro Networks.

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