The BBC has released new figures that show it’s global audience has increased to a record-breaking 265 million people a week. The figures, for 2013/14, represent an increase of nine million people on the previous year. The Global Audience Estimate (GAE) measures the combined reach of the BBC’s international services – BBC World Service, BBC World News, bbc.com/news and BBC Media Action – across the world.
Russia has shown the biggest growth for a single market, with the audience more than doubling to 6.9 million weekly while it’s Ukrainian Service also reflects this trend with its audience more than trebling to more than 600 000 over the last year. BBC World News TV shows an increase of 5m viewers, taking its weekly audience to 76 million. BBC digital news services have continued to grow, with an 8 million, or 21%, year on year increase bringing the digital audience to 46m.
“Today’s figures show the most successful year ever for the BBC’s global news services,” says Peter Horrocks, director of the BBC World Service Group. “The BBC plays a vital role in troubled times. We know that people around the world turn to the BBC when other impartial information is in short supply, and this is borne out by the sharp increase in audiences in Russia and Ukraine.
“Investment in TV bulletins and responsive mobile services for the World Service is bearing fruit. Radio will be a World Service mainstay for years to come, but as these figures testify, the way people access news is changing and we must continue to innovate if we are to flourish in the years ahead.”
The Global Audience Estimate also found that increases in television and digital audiences are offsetting the decline (mainly on shortwave and medium wave) in radio listening. Independent research from Newswhip also showed that the BBC is by far the world’s most retweeted news brand.
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