Why is iHeart Radio not growing? And why is Cumulus down 22%? And CBS? (according to Edison Research)

Why is iHeart Radio not growing? And why is Cumulus down 22%? And CBS? (according to Edison Research)

John Haggard

Clearly, online streaming is not working for terrestrial radio group operators, at least not for iHeart (formerly known as Clear Channel), Cumulus, and CBS. Here is an article from The Infinite Dial, Thoughts on Internet Radio metrics, from Larry Rosin of Edison Research. Click here.

Highlights and quotes from the article: So the question is: “Why?” It can’t be a lack of advertising. Even the briefest listen to any iHeartRadio station contains multiple mentions of the brand and the app.  Add in the various concerts and television specials and goodness knows the brand name is getting an enormous number of GRPs. Nor can it be that there’s no growth to be had – Pandora has grown 32% in the 16 months since iHeart’s peak (from 1.485million AAS to 1.900million). [See article comments on Cumulus and CBS.]

Here’s the real reason offered by us at Media Negotiator: Today, any consumer wants content that they can control in terms of how they want it, when they want it, where they want it, and why they want it. It does not matter WHO the media outlet is; what matters most is if the content is RELEVANT and engaging. The same goes for electronic equipment, cars, anything that we buy. While terrestrial radio is not going away, at least not anytime soon, the continual corporate “cost-cutting”, robot radio (voice tracking, fake remotes, one-size-fits-all formats, sizable pay cuts, “entry level” talent), and the elimination of on-air talent…all these elements continue to erode terrestrial radio. However, there is at least one group to watch and who is reversing the trend, at least for now: Alpha Broadcasting http://www.alphabroadcasting.com/about/ headed by Larry Wilson, the guy who built Citadel Broadcasting before it was decimated. “Putting the live and local back in radio” is one of his lead headlines. We continue to watch and applaud this operator who is a real radio “operator.” Now he may one day sell to Wall Street and the group become decimated, but at least for now, his group is a flag for what radio could be, if it’s not already too late.