Putting the word ‘winter’ and Los Angeles in the same sentence seems silly, but for the sake of the latest quarterly ratings, it’s necessary. In analyzing the performance of the market’s local sports radio brands, it’s clearly a two-station race between ESPN L.A. 710 and FOX Sports Radio’s AM 570 LA Sports.
One thing to keep in mind as you sort thru both brand’s performances is that the two stations operate differently with their weekday timeslots. The only time when they run head to head without interruption is during morning drive.
As far as the overall week and weekday prime hours are concerned, the quarter was stronger for 710. The station doubled up 570 with Men 25-54 M-F 6a-7p (2.7 to 1.3) and M-SU 6a-Mid (2.2 to 1.1).
Where 570 had to feel energized was in mornings where Dan Patrick’s program won the quarter 2.3 to 2.1 against Jorge Sedano, Keyshawn Johnson and LZ Granderson. Patrick’s show has remained above a 2 share year to year which is positive news for 570. For 710, although they were a few tenths of a point behind, they are up more than a half of a point year to year, an encouraging sign considering the morning show has only been in existence since September 2016.
Shifting to the middays, 710’s Mason and Ireland once again performed strong. The popular local duo led all sports talk shows in the market with a 3.3 during their 12p-3p timeslot. Fred Roggin and Rodney Peete on 570, who have only been in their 12p-2p timeslot for a few months, generated a 0.9.
During the mid-morning, Trudell and Thompson (2.2) and Stephen A. Smith (2.3) outperformed Colin Cowherd (1.2) between the hours of 9a-12p PT. In afternoons, Marcellus and Kelvin delivered a 2.8 from 3p-7p, which was higher than Petros and Money’s 1.1 during the hours of 2p-6p. 570’s 6p-7p hour produced a 0.9.
An advantage that 570 will have during the next few months is the addition of Los Angeles Dodgers baseball. The winners of the N.L. West the past 4 seasons should help the station increase cume and tune ins during the spring book. The question to be answered is whether or not that will be enough to help the station leapfrog 710 in the ratings.
While this is a good quarter for 710, and they deserve credit for an excellent showing, it’s still just one quarter. The challenge now is for 710 to maintain that consistency and for 570 to disrupt it.