With Kevin Weatherly back in the driver’s seat at KROQ Los Angeles, Audacy’s flagship alternative station began making on-air changes in an effort to restore the station’s tarnished brand. The most notable, so far, have to do with imagery, including the return of smartly scripted, fast-paced new music promos that were a hallmark of the station’s imagery during the early Weatherly era. .
KROQ also dusted off a slew of artist IDs from the vault. Having the voices of dozens of lead actors reinforce the station’s “World Famous” slogan doesn’t hurt when you’re trying to rebuild a brand and remind listeners of your heritage.
Putting its spin on the day’s events has long been a hallmark of KROQ and it’s replicated in the station’s promotions. “Supply chain shortages have affected KROQ music. We’re making new products to keep up with demand,” says a new music promo that interweaves song snippets with tongue-in-cheek references to the economy. inflation, it will cost you $106.7 million which was automatically charged to your debit card. Thank you for shopping at KROQ. Just because you’re hurting financially doesn’t mean we have to.
Seizing the pop culture moment
Beyond restoring some of its “stationality”, KROQ also made some musical changes. The focus is more on the bands that were its bread and butter before a series of drastic and unfortunate musical changes derailed the station. There are more Muse, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Foo Fighters, Offspring, Sublime, Linkin Park and other bands synonymous with the station. It’s also showing once again a willingness to seize the pop culture moment. No station in the Mediabase alternative panel airs Kate Bush’s ‘Running Up That Hill’ more than KROQ, with 25 rounds recorded last week for the 1985 classic enjoying a buzzing second act thanks to its inclusion in key scenes of the season. four of Netflix’s “Stranger Things” hits.
These and other Weatherly fingerprints are evident on the station which tied for 27th among listeners 6 and older with a 1.5 share in Nielsen’s April PPM survey, well behind KYSR. “Alt 98.7” from iHeartMedia, which had a 2.3.
But KROQ’s cume never really went away. The two big rivals are not that far apart in terms of combined viewership. In fact, KROQ (cume: 989,400), KYSR (1,018,300) and Meruelo Media heritage rocker KLOS (1,033,700) are all just below or above the one million cume range.
Instead, it was a loss of viewing opportunities and TSL that drove KROQ to the ratings basement. Among those 12 and older, KROQ’s average weekly TSL slipped to one hour and 15 minutes, compared to 1:45 for KYSR and two hours for KLOS.
Weatherly’s mission is to keep existing listeners coming back for more and staying longer. Key to that will be how he addresses the station’s recent flight talent exodus. But in the first week of his return, there are already encouraging signs. “The station looks a lot bigger now,” says a market watcher.