Background

Radio measurement in the UK today

RAJAR’s role is to provide a world class measurement service that supports the programming needs of the UK radio industry, as well as underpinning the trading requirements of the commercial radio sector.

RAJAR measures all listening seamlessly via a single source. The data capture is through the continuous placement of diaries across 50 weeks of the year (100,000 p.a.), in which respondents record their live radio listening for one week. The weekly data is aggregated and published quarterly.

Respondents are recruited face-to-face by a dedicated field force, using highly targeted sampling to provide demographic and geographic precision.

On average, a UK adult listens to a repertoire of approximately 3 stations. Radio content is generally thematic and genre-based with programme schedules and presenters remaining consistent over long periods - years in many instances. A diary methodology is therefore highly complementary to the unique characteristics of the radio medium, and is intuitively designed and simple to complete. It is also remarkably enduring.

The RAJAR listening survey has the advantage of not being reliant on specific hardware, and as the methodology is based on an adult’s active recording of what goes into the ears, this approach has been impervious to the development of new listening devices and delivery platforms, continuing to measure listening without disruption.

Furthermore, Radio is mainly a live medium – on-demand/listen-again represents just over 1% of all radio listening hours. This has resulted in RAJAR being able to avoid the complications of consolidating live and on-demand audiences, a challenge that other industry measurement systems have had to contend with.

Through continued innovation in methodology, recruitment techniques and participant monitoring, RAJAR’s sign-up and completion rates show no signs of diminishing, remaining as high today as they have ever been.