Radio Facts: Arbitron Sets New Criterion for Redefining Metro Survey Areas
Changes in radio broadcasters' business environment prompts re-evaluation of 13-year old policy
70- point listening/commuting criterion replaces the 55-15 listening/commuting criteria
New rule in effect in time for Fall 2011 redefinitions
(NYSE: ARB) announced today an updated criterion for redefining metro survey areas in its diary markets. Arbitron established the new listening and commuting criterion in response to changes in the radio business environment and in consultation with representatives from its Radio and Advertiser/Agency Advisory Councils.
The new criterion for determining if a county qualifies to be in the Metro is based on a 70-point criterion, which replaces the 55 percent listening/15 percent commuting criteria that had been in place since 1998.
Under the new 70-point criterion, a county would qualify for inclusion in a Metro when the sum of the percentage of listening and the percentage of commuting is 70 percent or more, provided that a minimum of 55 percent of the listening quarter-hours in the county are credited to stations that are home to the existing metro. Counties with less than 55 percent listening to metro stations, regardless of commuting percentage, are not eligible for the metro.
Under the former criteria, at least 55 percent of the listening quarter-hours in the county had to be credited to stations that are home to the existing Metro and at least 15 percent of the commuting in the county must have been into the existing Metro. The new rule has no minimum for commuting.
The new criterion is expected to take effect in time for redefinitions to be applicable for the Fall 2011 survey period. Arbitron is in the process of reviewing its Metro redefinition policy for markets using the Portable People Meterâ„¢ ratings service.
“The radio broadcasting landscape has changed significantly over the past thirteen years and we felt it was in the best interest of our clients to evaluate the existing metro redefinition policies,” said Sean Creamer, Executive Vice President, U.S. Media Services. “We greatly appreciate the time and careful consideration our advisory council members put into developing their recommendations for the updated metro redefinition policies.”
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