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Dick Broadcasting Drops Nielsen for Eastlan

Broadcaster gives up PPM for telephone recall, e-surveys

In what may be the first such occurrence in an audio Portable People Meter measurement market, Dick Broadcasting has not renewed its Nielsen contract and has signed with privately-held Eastlan Ratings for audience measurement.

The Bellevue, Wash.-based Eastlan says under the terms of a multiyear agreement, Eastlan will begin measuring the Greensboro/High Point/Winston-Salem, N.C., market in Summer 2015.

Dick Broadcasting owns classic rock WKRR(FM) and CHR WKZL(FM) in the Triad market.

Dick Broadcasting’s VP/GM Dick Harlow said: “The meter was supposed to be the savior and all it’s done is increase our annual payments to Nielsen. And now we find out to win in the PPM game you need a magic black box to job the system,” an apparent reference to the new Voltair PPM watermark monitor and processor from 25-Seven Systems.

“At some point, enough is enough,” said Harlow, who adds he’s looking forward to learning who in his market is listening “rather than who they are exposed to” and highlights the higher sample size possible with telephone recall ratings methodology.

Eastlan President/CEO Mike Gould characterizes his company’s hybrid of telephone recall (landline and cellular) and e-surveys as not “sexy,” but “fair and reliable.” He predicted Eastlan would save Dick Broadcasting “a lot of money by getting their ratings investment back in line with the realities of today’s radio revenue stream.”