Survey Reveals Radio News Trends

The most recent RTDNA/Hofstra University Survey shows 77.7% of radio stations run local news, with that number increasingly slightly for AMs (78.8%) and dropping for FMs (77.2%). Overall, radio news time is up 8.8% over last year.

The “more news trend” coincided with having more staff and more stations in a radio group, indicating increased resources for a newsroom.

Despite the increases, fewer newsrooms reported increasing their news airtime, and more reported a decrease. Fewer news directors also expected an increase in news time, but 21.8% of news directors reported adding a newscast in 2012, the same as in 2011, with the bulk of these finding homes in the morning.

The radio news director currently averages 2.6 stations, with a nationwide median of two and a maximum of 14 local stations plus 30 elsewhere. When more than one related station ran news in the same market, 80% had a centralized newsroom.

News directors were also likely to have to multitask, with 64.5% saying they had additional responsibilities at the station, down from previous years. Sports and announcing were cited as common additional responsibilities.    

See the full results here.

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