One of the stories I missed while I was, you know, working for a living, was the latest radio ratings numbers. As usual, the changes are for the most part minor, a point or two up or down, which changes little but the blood pressure of station managers.
One thing that is noteworthy is the rise of CHMP 98.5FM, Corus’s (soon to be Cogeco’s) French-language talk-radio station. It’s particularly apparent in the all-important morning rush, where Paul Arcand’s Puisqu’il faut se lever is rising pretty spectacularly in the ratings, as you can see from the chart above compiled by Astral.
BBM doesn’t measure why people listen to what they do, but it wouldn’t take a rocket scientist to figure this is due to the strength of his interviews and regular contributors.
Anecdotally, I’ve noticed a lot of the news I get coming from this station. CHMP is where the Journal de Montréal’s Michelle Coudé-Lord went to refute accusations against her by one of her locked-out employees (she appeared with Benoit Dutrizac, who does the afternoon show). It has the particular advantage of being a neutral party in the so-called guerre des médias, being owned by neither Gesca, Radio-Canada or Quebecor.
As if on cue, La Presse’s Nathalie Collard did a profile of Arcand and his show, and talked to him about people who fear his hot seat. Listening to his sometimes confrontational interview style, it’s easy to see why. But he’s getting so big that, like Tout le monde en parle, some people can’t afford not to appear there.
UPDATE (Jan. 1): An Agence QMI poll shows Arcand is by far the most notable radio personality.
What about the ratings for English radio stations?
Overall: CJAD, CJFM (Virgin 96), CFQR (Q), CHOM, same as it’s been for about forever.
The success of the 98.5 morning show only goes to show how weak much of the rest of their lineup is doing. 98.5 domainates the mornings, yet runs overall 5th place.
The good rating of the radio station has alot to do with guys like Benoit Dutrizac who tell it like it is. People want to ear that. They are fed up with the kiss but journalism in the medias. They want to ear the reality of 55% failure to graduate in the education system and the war medicine in our hospitals and everything else. Otherwise there is no reason to watch or listen to the radio and TV. The rest of the programming is boring anough as it is.