WIN is mounting a strong challenge to Prime’s dominance of the Albury-Wodonga television news market.
In the most recent survey, Prime beat WIN by only 275 viewers with an average audience for July 11 to August 7 of 17,380 people.
WIN claimed its first survey win since late 2006 in survey four (May 16-June 12) with 18,076 viewers compared to 17,592.
The two bulletins don’t go head-to-head with Prime sticking to its traditional 5.30pm and WIN moving its bulletin to 6.30pm after the national news a few years ago.
WIN has three journalists based in Albury including bureau chief Andrew Moir, who credited the station’s news revival to a “team effort” of the reporters, cameramen and editors, the presenters, headed by Bruce Roberts, and the station’s decision to switch to the digital widescreen format.
“We’ve been busier than a centipede learning how to skip,” Mr Moir said.
“The aim of any local news is to get as much local content from the Border and North East in there as we can and make the stories as informative as we can and entertaining as we can.
“Whenever you work in TV or any media industry, ratings are what you are judged on.
“It’s the same for regional and metropolitan TV and the media in general.”
James Oaten is the most recent addition to the WIN team, starting in February and Nathan Motton has just completed two years in Albury.
Prime started the year with a lead of 3666 viewers over WIN in the first survey from February 7 to March 6.
Prime network program manager Trevor Clarke said yesterday he acknowledged WIN had made up ground, but Prime retained the best television news service.
“The figures are a bit tighter this year, but this is what happens occasionally,” Mr Clarke said.
“We’ve still got the strongest news service in the market and when you look at the 1? hours of news we provide, we are absolutely in front.
“When you do shift some programs around as they did you do get some shift in audience.
“It has taken them a while to recover and what you are seeing is them recovering to the level they were before making those changes.”