When the skies were smoky New Yorkers turned to 1010 WINS: +179% jump in listenership

By Reggie Shah, Senior Director, Research & Insights, Audacy

Even in a Fog of Smoky Air, Audio is the Clear Choice

On June 7, 2023, wildfires raging across Quebec sent smoke across the Canadian border to cover more than a dozen U.S. states. As air quality deteriorated and skies darkened, questions swirled as thick as the fog: Where is the smoke now? Where is it going? Can I safely go outside? Is my health being compromised? Are my family and friends affected? When will the smoke go away? 

And for answers, people turned to the most trusted media option: Audio.

1010 WINS

New Yorkers, who experienced the worst air quality anywhere in the world that day, flocked to our WINS platforms for updates. They tuned in to WINS radio during the day and through the afternoon commute, driving listener increases as high as 179 percent. Then at home, they seamlessly continued to listen to WINS on streaming platforms well into the late evening. 

Source: Nielsen Audio/Media Monitors, Overnight Meter Panelist data WINS-FM, 6/7/23, 5/31/23

Listeners took action. In a survey we conducted that day through Suzy Insights, we learned that as the weather conditions worsened, people who turned to Audio first used that information to make key decisions.

  • These Audio-first audiences were significantly more likely than the average U.S. adult to hit the stores to stock up (47% vs 29%).
  • Of those Audio-first listeners, 75% were parents, and more than half of those picked up their kids early from school.
  • As conditions worsened, those who stayed with an Audio source were even more likely to stock up on necessities (51% vs 29%).
  • Whether in a car (61%), on a smart speaker (49%), or on a home or office radio (46%), radio was the leading source of Audio1.

In times of crisis, Audio and its trusted hosts are indispensable in keeping communities safe, connected, and informed.

Engaged Impressions Study, Audacy & Alter Agents

Even when audiences literally can’t see anything through the smoky air, they use Audio to make smart decisions for themselves and their loved ones. Whether it’s vitalizing brands or delivering vital communications in a crisis, Audio is the place to be.  

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Audacy Insights Air Quality Survey via Suzy Insights, June 8, 2023 N=1000 A18+, limited to affected cities: NY, NJ, MA, CT, PA, MD, DC, IL, VA, NC, SC, AR, IN.

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