On the earnings call yesterday Radio One executives made it clear that part of the revenue issues they were having in four markets were directly related to Arbitron’s PPM.
The controversy over ratings from Arbitron’s Portable People Meter, a passive electronic measurement device, may have abated, but PPM’s impact on the radio business is still being worked out.
Alan Kepler of Broadcast Architecture showed a 30 minute video of actual PPM holders talking about how they were recruited and how the process works from the listener perspective. Here are a few headlines
The Portable People Meter – PPM for short – is an electronic device used by Arbitron, a media marketing research firm, used to established listening habits on behalf of radio stations across the United States.
As more markets convert to electronic measurement, programmers face a conundrum. Minute-by-minute PPM listening data for features, artist interviews and other programming elements often doesn’t square with traditional popularity indicators, such as perceptual research.
You’ve heard, by now, about Arbitron’s new device for measuring radio listening: the portable people meter (PPM). It picks up electronically encoded signals from radio stations (even if they’re heard over a computer).
Who are these people who say “yes” when Arbitron asks them to carry a PPM device? Why do they do it? Do they follow the rules? Do they even know it’s about radio, or do they think it’s about all media? What do they think of the meters themselves and are they embarrassed to be seen wearing one?
The talk host was extremely frustrated. He had recently done what he and his team thought was four great hours on the Chinese Tiger Mom topic. The show seemed to have it all – lots of great calls, tons of emotion, several different angles on parenting, and great forward momentum.