“When radio ratings got more precise, it changed how programmers saw their audience. Are podcasters heading for something similar?”

NL:

“Some stations that were highly popular turned out not to be,” Jacobs says. “In some cases, stations that weren’t successful during the diary days looked better at PPM.”

Results varied by market, but generally, PPM showed fragmented listening: People listened to stations for less time. A person who wrote in diary that were tuned to public nonstop for their one-hour commute might instead be shown as listening for 12 minutes, then switching between Howard Stern, classic rock, and top 40 before switching back to NPR a half hour later. programmers adapted to , and learned how to play to the PPMs.

“Talk got dialed back. To some degree, playing new music was seen as of a liability,” Jacobs says. “It even had an effect on as mundane as where stations played their commercials — the more commercial breaks you take, the lower your ratings are going to be.” That led to stations playing more commercials in fewer blocks during each hour.

“Certain formats disappeared,” says media consultant Mark Ramsay. “There was a format called smooth jazz. PPM killed it. It was doing quite nicely prior to PPM and PPM killed it.

 When radio ratings got more precise, it changed how programmers saw their audience. Are podcasters heading for something similar?
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Gary Payton and Glen Rice Get Their Minds Blown By Jordan Kilganon (4:02)

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