3 TV Stations Bear Brunt of Covid-19

  • TV station microphones set up in for a press conference
    TV station microphones set up in for a press conference
    File
  • Friday, March 13, 2020, saw Kenyans usher in a new way of performing their day to day activities as that was the day that the first case of the global pandemic, Covid-19, was announced by Health CS Mutahi Kagwe.

    In a new report by Geo Poll, Kenya's media perspective has changed a lot with the number of TV viewers increasing by 335,000 from 6.76 million to 7.09 million.

    KTN and Maisha Magic East both lost 34,000 viewers with Switch TV losing 3,000.

    One of the common factors among the three is that they provide pure entertainment, without priority on news and current affairs. 

    A studio at Citizen TV located in Kilimani, Nairobi.
    A studio at Citizen TV located in Kilimani, Nairobi.
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    In the report, Citizen TV is the biggest gainer amongst local stations, upping their number to 2.045 million with an increase of 159,000 more viewers since the pandemic was announced in Kenya. Citizen TV's rise can be attributed to their more appealing shows and contents to local consumers. When schools were closed, the media house changed its programming to suit students and young children.

    KTN News gained a total of 110,000 more viewers between 6 a.m. and 12 a.m. showing that Kenyans are interested to know more about the day to day activities within their borders.

    International outlet Al Jazeera was the third biggest gainer in the migration of viewers as they added 59,000 more, increasing their numbers from 167,000 to 226,000 within the stipulated time of viewership.

    Royal Media's Inooro TV is the only vernacular station within top ten TV stations preferred by viewers. At number nine Inooro TV gained 33,000 more viewers raising their reach to 260,000 Kenyans.

    In radio listenership, Radio Citizen is at par with  Citizen TV having the biggest gain of new listeners who tuned  into it.

    GeoPoll's distribution of viewers across different radio stations between March 1 and March 29
    GeoPoll's distribution of viewers across different radio stations between March 1 and March 29
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    GeoPoll

    The report stated that Radio Citizen gained 115, 000 more listeners to reach 1.384 million listeners since the announcement was made.

    According to the report, Kenyans love listening to radio within a specific period of time before their minds disengage.

    ''After the stay-at-home directive was issued, total average listenership is high between 8 a.m. through to 2 p.m. before it declines again for the remainder of the day.'' stated the report.

    Working from home was the cause of less radio listenership as most people preferred television and social media.

    ''GeoPoll’s research experts believe the shifts in radio audiences are being driven by a myriad of factors. With the clarion call for people to stay at home, consumers are starting off their days later than normal, which aligns with the decline in listenership from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m,'' the report read.

    The shift in both listenership and viewership may only be temporary as Kenyans are now interested in getting more information across the board, especially during this period of the pandemic.

    ''Altogether, with consumers spending more time at home, their listenership and viewership attention is being split across the traditional media of TV and radio, as well as other media platforms including social media.

    Citizen TV's Maria series cast.
    Citizen TV's Maria series cast.
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