Radio City, Radio Mirchi, Big FM lead FM listenership: AZ Research Study

When it comes to the radio station that best represents the essence of a city, Radio City tops the charts in Bangalore, Mumbai, Delhi and Pune, while Suryan FM comes out in front in Chennai and Radio Mirchi in Hyderabad. This is according to a study carried out by AZ Research Partners on the current trends in FM radio listenership across India. Parameters for the study included listenership, frequency, mediums, drivers and motivators, preferences and recall, among others. The cultural essence of a city was measured using parameters like local flavour, local preferences with locally popular activations and programmes. 


In terms of listenership, the study concluded that Radio City topped the list with a listenership of 5.2 crore, followed by Radio Mirchi and Big FM with 4 crore and 2.6 crore listenership, respectively. 

Consumption patterns 

With regards to the place and medium of radio consumption, the study found that a whopping 76 per cent of the consumers accessed FM radio through their mobile phones, while an average of 22.5 per cent of them listened to the radio while driving. Another 36 per cent used the radio at home. With mobile phone penetration growing in rural India, radio as a medium of mass communication is now reaching the remotest corners of the country via the mobile phone. 

Listener Preferences 

The study identified a set of drivers that motivated listeners to listen to one particular type of radio channel. These motivators were centered on four parameters, including the image of the radio station, the kind of programmes it aired, the kind of music it played and the Radio Jockey who hosted these activations. 

It is seen that while 100 per cent of respondents considered good music as a motivator, only 50 per cent felt the image of the station and RJs impacted their listening patterns. A whopping 83 per cent of the respondents thought that the quality of programmes aired highly impacted their frequency of listening on a particular station. 

Most popular Radio Jockeys 

Based on overall recall and approval ratings, popularity of Radio Jockeys are ranked as below: 


The survey was conducted among a sizable portion of the population across 23 cities, including male and female participating above the age of 12. The report documents factors like most popular radio channel based on listenership, drivers for listening behaviour and preferences, perception of these channels among listeners, top-of-the-mind recall of channel names, programmes, jingles and names of radio jockeys (RJ). 

Additionally, it also compares radio listenership against other mass mediums of communication like print and television. It covers 23 cities, including Jaipur, Nagpur, Bangalore, Mumbai, Delhi, Bareilly, Varanasi, Gorakhpur, Agra, Pune, Ranchi, Chennai, Hyderabad, Coimbatore, Vizag, Surat, Vadodara, Ahmedabad, Hisar, Jalandhar, Karnal, Lucknow and Ahmednagar with over 7,000 respondents across cities. 

Founded in 2010 by Shubhra Misra and Sujay Misra, AZ Research Partners is a full-fledged marketing consultancy firm offering services in market research, market intelligence and consultancy services research. Headquartered in Bangalore and affiliated with BMI, it is one of the leading market research players in South East Asia and offers services across the region panning India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Japan and Malaysia. In India, AZ Research operates out of four branches in Bangalore, Mumbai, Delhi and Kolkata and has field presence in over 16 cities and towns.


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