Audiences and production resources

Audience interaction includes using contributors, studio audiences, votes, competitions and offering advice & information after broadcast.

The BBC has guidelines for any programme which includes interaction with the audience.

Read the BBC's overall policy on interacting with our audiences in the Editorial Guidelines website.

BBC Radio RAJAR Q1 2016

BBC Radio RAJAR Q1 2016 (PDF) 

The PDF gives you an overview of the latest (Q1 2016) RAJAR results, for All Radio, BBC Radio and some highlights for Commercial Radio and Digital Radio.  A summary is below for those who want a quick digest.  And if you click on the station logos, you’ll find some further detail relating to the individual stations on those pages.

Much like the previous quarters, we see very few significant shifts at Q1 2016 although one significant shift downwards in reach for Commercial Radio reverses the situation seen last time where they overtook BBC reach.  This time, a loss of 800k+ on the quarter sees their reach fall back to 34.3m, versus BBC reach of 34.9m.  A gap of 592k is not substantial though and we may well see more jostling for position in coming quarters.

In terms of average hours per listener (AHPL), at a top level, Q1 sees stability, possibly part of an overall plateauing.  BBC Radio is pretty steady at 15h37m per week per listener, 3 hours ahead of Commercial Radio’s 12h40m.  But when we look at the challenging 15-24 demographic, All Radio AHPL hit an all-time low of 14h in Q1, driven by a record low for Commercial Radio of 10.1.  For the BBC, 15-24 AHPL (of 7.8) is up on recent quarters but the long-term trend is still downwards, and we trail Commercial Radio by 2hours+ per listener per week among this important demographic. 

In terms of digital listening, Q1 brings us a third consecutive quarter of good news - 57% of the population listen digitally and 44.1% of all hours are digital.  And it appears that DAB sets are still in vogue for Christmas gifting as a record 56% of homes now claim to have a DAB and this platform takes 31% of all hours.  An interesting development at Q1 as, in home, digital listening now makes up a record 51.5% of all hours, hitting the magic tipping point in that space.  And workplace listening isn’t far off at 48.3% but in-car is lagging far behind at 21.2% of all hours being digital.  As of Feb 29th we have had the new Commercial Radio multiplex (D2) broadcasting across the UK and many of these services will report next time round, when it will be interesting to see how they drive those digital figures further.  For this quarter though, there is good news, digitally, for the BBC as, once more, 6 Music reports record figures to consolidate its position as the UK’s biggest digital-only service with 2.24m listeners every week.



Q1 2016 RAJAR results by network 


Audience interactivity

See the Audience interactivity policy on the Policies and Guidelines section.


Finding a studio audience

BBC Studio Audiences can:

  • Research and invite the right audience.
  • Design, print and distribute tickets.
  • Ensure audiences are looked after on their visit.
  • Market the show on the Shows, Tours & Events website and through email to a database of people who have previously expressed interest.

Email: BBC Studio Audiences

Read further guidance on Ticketing for BBC Events and Programmes on the BBC Editorial Guidelines site.  


Programme support services

Action Line off-air support (0800 numbers)

Some programmes raise difficult issues and may need to offer listeners off-air information about organisations offering further support or advice. Editorial Policy requires us to offer a range of organisations to maintain due impartiality, also reflecting differences in the four UK nations. In these cases please discuss with your Commissioning Editor.

 Our Action Line team in Capita Audience Services will normally need 10 days’ notice before TX to give organisations time to agree and prepare the support, but if necessary will do what they can with shorter notice. They will research the online information to be published on the programme website, which must be signed off for compliance by the programme Exec Producer. Presenters or continuity then direct listeners to the website first, and the information is recorded for listeners to hear on a dedicated number (subject to availability). NB we do not offer individual counselling or other bespoke support for callers.

To request this service please email our team at or call our Capita Audience Services team on 01375 303662 or 303663.

Commissioning Editors will help productions contact the Audiences Services team.

Information Line (03700 or 0845 numbers)

It is possible to arrange an 'information' line to offer listeners general information about programme content where there is no 'social action' element. This service can sometimes also be used to allow listeners to comment/interact with your programme.

In some instances, this will be via the ‘network-branded’ number provided by Audience Services in partnership with Capita.

This service may be answered by people or use pre-recorded information depending on demand or requirements.

Capita Audience Services will normally need 10 days’ notice before TX. Network 'information lines' should not betrailed specifically for particular types of calls without advance notice because extra staff cannot be allocated at short notice.

To request this service please email our team at or call our Capita Audience Services team on 01375 303662 or 303663.

On air campaigns

On air campaigns can sometimes be supported if sufficient notice of requirements is given. More details can be found on the BBC Audience Services page


Audience feedback reporting

BBC Audience Services report audience reaction to your programme from any phone calls, letters and emails they get centrally from the public. Their overnight audience reports are published each morning on the internal Gateway intranet. If you don’t have access your commissioning editor can provide a copy of the Radio log.


Pronunciation unit

The BBC Pronunciation unit is staffed by professional linguists who research and provide advice about pronunciations in any language. This advice is free of charge and is available exclusively to BBC staff, programme makers and independent production companies producing content for the BBC.

Pronunciation advice can be given over the phone and via email. When contacting the unit, programme makers are asked to provide programme details, context and to specify their deadline. Scripts should be sent with the required pronunciations clearly marked.

In exceptional circumstances (eg if child actors are involved) the unit may be able to supply spoken pronunciations as digital sound files.

Written pronunciations can be provided in either of two in-house respelling systems:

Telephone: 020 361 44700 (for the exclusive use of BBC staff, programme makers and independent production companies producing BBC content)


Please note: if you have a comment or complaint about a BBC programme please visit the dedicated BBC Complaints website



BBC Archives has a network of research centres and a range of self-research tools to support productions.

Holdings include the BBC TV and Radio programme archives, music, news and photograph archive and a sheet music collection.

BBC Archives also look after the BBC's programme documentation (scripts, programme files etc).

Find out more on the BBC Archives site.

Find out more about rights and clearances for BBC Archive on the Archive, Rights and Clearances section.

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