MediaBuyerPlanner.com has an interesting forecast from SNL Kagan that they just put online. It would seem that the projected growth rate for radio in West Coast cities looks quite positive from their standpoint:
The highest growth in radio revenue is expected to be centered in western cities between now and 2012. San Diego is expected to pull a 2.0 percent compound annual growth rate, followed by Riverside, Calif., at 1.9 percent, according to SNL Kagan.
Stockton, Calif., San Jose and Fresno come next, all with an expected CAGR of 1.9 percent, writes MediaPost. Thirteen of the top 20 markets by revenue will be in California.
Radio’s five-year annual revenue growth is expected to be 1.1 percent.
The Media Post article linked in the quote above also mentions the additional demographic that these areas are also distinctive due to their rising Hispanic population. It also comments on the slowest growth regions for the industry which include both the Great Lakes area and those parts of the South that are still recovering from Hurricane Katrina.
If there is anyone reading this that has access to information about how much of the West Coast Hispanic population is on the wrong side of the digital divide, I would love to see it. If a significant majority of Hispanics lack consistent access to the Internet, that could be one of the factors driving this trend. Unfortunately, I lack solid numbers on this speculation.
As to radio in the southern U.S., anyone who has been down here knows what a struggle is still faced on the Gulf Coast. I cannot find it in me to express shock at yet another thing moving behind the curve. It does sadden me to see it, though. Radio was the single most important medium for us when we returned to New Orleans after the levee failure.
In the meantime it would seem that profitability lies in the West…..