Is BBC Radio 1 Losing Influence Over Millennials?

Radio 1 has lost viewers – there’s no denying that. The show is continuing to lose numbers as the audience drops off quicker than workers in an office around Christmas time.

With Nick Grimshaw’s listeners at a weekly 5.25million in the third quarter of 2016, this figure was down to 4.93 million for the third quarter on 2017 – the first time the show dropped below the five-million mark under the former X Factor judge.

In comparison, Chris Evans’ morning BBC Radio 2 show has an average weekly reach of over nine-million; there is little competition for the 51-year-old, particularly when considering the show itself lost listeners this calendar year.

However, despite BBC Radio 1 losing its audience and continuing to fall behind the ‘most popular’ radio show race, it continues to hold influence over the ‘bigger’ areas in terms of having an audience.

Fewer people are listening to the radio; it’s an entertainment source that will never die, but people tuning in either at home or in the car is becoming a less and less way of listening to music. In 2010, the number of listening hours between 15 – 24-year-olds was at 29million; this number was down to 16million for the same age bracket by 2016.

With the ever-growing popularity of streaming, listening to music via channels such as Spotify is killing the radio. In March 2016, Spotify had 30million paying subscribers, and this number has risen to 50million just a year later in March 2017.

Millenials preference to plug in when traveling is more obvious than anything just by getting in a mate’s car or in an Uber: “Sorry drive, don’t suppose you’ve got an AUX cable?” – RIP Radio.

Yet, the decision to play your own music via these means does not suggest Radio 1 is losing power over its audience; Radio 1 continues to win at the social media game and is so dominant over other shows with subscribers and followers that there is hardly a competition.

Radio 1 has 4.1million YouTube subscribers, compared to BBC Radio 2’s modest amount floating at 58,000. The likes of Kiss then come in at 107,000 and Heart at 3.5thousand – Radio 1’s popularity via these means is obvious to see.

In a day and age where YouTube continues to find greater influence in the social media world, the signs are positive for the Radio 1 team.

With the likes of YouTube’s growth at 40%, and Facebook’s continuing to remain high at 17%, Radio 1 maintains its influence over social media through these platforms.

Radio 1 has 2.7million likes on Facebook, not far behind Apple music’s at 3.5million, and way ahead of BBC Radio 2, which has around 678,000.

The viral content, both listening and sharing music is still very much alive with Radio 1. It may have lost listeners via live listening of radio shows – a factor likely to happen with the radio industry seemingly petering out. But, its influence remains via other means, and when it releases a streaming show, it’s likely to reap the rewards from its loyal following on YouTube.



Start the discussion

to comment