Christmas Carol Arms Race Hits Chicago Radio

Stations compete to kick off holiday programming earlier and earlier
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 2, 2007 3:19 PM CDT
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(Newser) – Apparently not content to subject listeners to "The Little Drummer Boy" in the traditional Thanksgiving-to-Christmas window, two Chicago radio stations switched to the all-fa-la-la-la-la, all-the-time holiday format today. The move is both the latest volley in a hot rivalry and a repeat of a strategy that paid off in ratings a year ago, the Chicago Tribune reports.

An adult contemporary station and a rival talk station that's rumored to be changing formats—to adult contemporary— raced to deck the halls earliest in an attempt to get the attention of female listeners, a key adult-contemporary demographic. WLIT switched to Yuletide mode on November 2 last year and rode a ratings wave from leftover Halloween candy season until the first Valentine's treats hit the shelves at New Year's. (Read more WCKG 105.9 stories.)