All Asian radio stations that subscribe to audience measuring body RAJAR have witnessed a drop in listeners tuning in over the last three months, ending December 2007.

National

Whilst Sunrise Radio continues its dominance as the UK’s most listened to Asian radio station, it did shed 27,000 listeners during October – December last year. Its audience currently stands at 510,000 compared to the 537,000 previously. Sunrise Radio’s market share remains unchanged at 0.4%, however the numbers of total hours listening to Sunrise Radio fell slightly from 8.3 hours to 7.2.

The BBC Asian Network lost 35,000 listeners during the same period from 476,000 before to 441,000 currently. Its market share of 0.3% remained static, whilst total hours listeners tuning into the station saw a slight increase from 5.5 hours to 5.9 hours.

The BBC Asian Network announced earlier this week that it will be rolling out its biggest ever marketing strategy starting next Monday. ‘The New Sound of Asian Britain’ as the campaign is being called will go live across television, radio and online.

A BBC Asian Network spokesperson said: “The Rajar figures this quarter reflect the churn that inevitably occurs when a Network makes major changes as we have. We’re confident that the direction that the Network is taking is the right one for our young audience and we believe the marketing campaign that starts across TV, radio and online next week will communicate this to our audience.”

Coincidently, opposition Sunrise Radio is launching Sunrise Television, a service, which has been in pre-launch mode for over three years. No doubt the channel is also planning a marketing campaign to promote its new initiative.

It remains to be seen how these marketing strategies will benefit their respective stations in the next round of RAJAR results.

Local

Sunrise Radio, which broadcasts on 1458AM in Greater London lost 41,000 listeners. However its sister station Kismat Radio, which in the previous quarter saw its ratings surge to over 100,000 has witnessed the biggest audience fall – 46,000 down. Further disheartening news for Kismat Radio is its market share sliding from 0.3% to 0.1%. Yarr Radio, which is the group’s niche station with the least promotional activity surrounding it stands with an audience of 8,000 listeners compared to the 9,000 before.

The other big commercial rival to Sunrise Radio in London is Club Asia, which again has lost listeners. Whilst its fall of 19,000 listeners wasn’t as big as Sunrise Radio locally, this is the second quarter on the trot that Club Asia has lost listeners. Over the last six months, Club Asia has had a 26,000 decline in listeners tuning in. Club Asia’s audience share has fallen slightly from 0.7% to 0.6% and total of hours listening to Club Asia per week stands at 6.1 from 7.2 hours previously.

Other UK based Asian radio stations such as Radio XL in Birmingham, Sabras Radio in Leicester and Asian Sound in Manchester do not subscribe to RAJAR.

Updated: 19:43