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Radio Slides, But Still Dominates Ad-Supported Media

However, gains in podcasting across all demos offer lessons for radio…

By Paul Marszalek
The Top

Using data from Edison Research’s ongoing “Share of Ear” study, Cumulus/Westwood One has released a great sales deck making the case for radio.

The Q1 2022 data crushes the myth that radio performs poorly against other ad-supported media. In truth, use of over-the-air radio continues to lead by wide margins. Also true is that over-the-air listening is essentially down by 10 points since 2018. Some of that loss is offset by slight gains in listening to radio station streams.

Noteworthy are the gains in podcast usage — and radio should take note. After all, podcasts are grabbing audience with compelling storytelling and fantastic talent – investments that commercial radio is collectively loathe to make.

Selected Slides:

As might be expected, radio now accounts for less than 50% of use among ad-support audio. Huge gains in podcasting. Worth noting that the numbers above combined 18-24 with 25-34. We suspect this was done to soften the blow of 18-24 radio usage, which is likely very ugly.
25-54 again shows a full 10 point decline for over-the-air radio. However, some of that loss is clawed back through AM/FM streaming.
Losses for over-the-air radio are slightly smaller in the 35-64 demo, but again, podcasts grow.

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