Evangelical Christians and the Infinite Dial

Last week we had the privilege of presenting data from Edison Research’s Infinite Dial study at the Christian Music Broadcasters’ Chicago Non Terrestrial / Social Media Momentum Summit. It was fantastic to see a group of industry professionals devote an entire day to an aspect of the radio business that is so crucial at this moment. In fact, anyone interested in marketing to Christians should be excited about the insights that the Infinite Dial provides.

Since 1998, Edison Research has engaged in the longest-running research study of emerging digital platforms in America. Termed the “Infinite Dial”, the annual report tracks developments in Online Radio, Social Media, Digital Devices, Podcasts, and many other topics.

When fielding this year’s Infinite Dial study, we added a question especially for CMB’s Momentum, to determine whether respondents consider themselves “Born Again or Evangelical Christians.”  This presentation focuses on the 23% of Americans who are white Born Again or Evangelical Christians (for the purpose of this post we will refer to them as “Evangelicals”) and their behaviors in the digital space.

The overall Infinite Dial data shows the tremendous growth of Online Radio listening, social media usage and mobile device ownership.

Here are some key findings on Evangelicals:

The make-up of our Evangelical sample is more female than it is male. And it is also older than what you would see in a national sample.

The Evangelicals are a little behind the total population in online listening — 39% said they listened in last month vs. the 47% of the total population.

Nationally, the use of audio podcasting has reached a new high. 15% of the national population listened to podcasts in the last month. Evangelicals are also at 15%.

62% of Evangelicals said they use a social network and one-quarter of them check their social network several times per day — which is only 3% points lower than the total population. 

An estimated 160 Million people in the United States own a smartphone. That’s 61% of the total population today. Just five years ago that number was only 10%. Evangelicals are not too far behind in smartphone ownership at 55%. 

Tablet ownership nationwide has had tremendous growth in the past few years. It went from 17% in 2012 to 39% in 2014. Evangelicals are right on track with the larger population – also at 39%.

The Internet Audio pie continues to grow.  More and more Evangelicals are listening online and are reachable in new ways and in new places.

More than half of Evangelicals are using social media. This is an opportunity for brands to be closer than ever to their target consumers! In fact, now that people have direct access to brands and celebrities they very well may expect it from every service or product they care about. 

Mobile devices are rewiring behavior extremely quickly.  More and more Evangelicals will be using their phones as portable media centers. If your product is not optimized for mobile then it may as well not exist.  And we challenge you to ask: How else can you be present in the consumers’ mobile lives?

The Infinite Dial data is powerful. But after seeing the big picture let’s go back and consider what it means for each individual.

Through various qualitative projects, we’ve had the opportunity to spend countless hours interviewing radio listeners. These listeners have showed us how big a role radio can play in their lives. In some cases, listeners turn to the radio for comfort before they turn to the people around them. And, especially in Christian Radio, many listeners trust in and look to stations for guidance.

Christian Radio’s relationship with its listeners is good example of what any brand should aspire to. But they must sustain that relationship by providing the best content on and off the AM/FM dial.

And it’s clear from our data that any marketer looking to find Christians can look for them on the Infinite Dial.

Download the complete presentation below:

Evangelical Christians and the Infinite Dial

beats iTunes

Why Radio and Music Should Take The iTunes/Beats Deal Seriously

The early press on both iTunes Radio and Beats Music, when each debuted within the last year, was harsh. Beats was considered naïve in expecting a substantial paying audience. Apple’s iTunes Radio was called out for not single-handedly halting the decline of paid downloads as the streaming model continued to grow.

And yet, Edison Research’s “The Infinite Dial 2014,” released when iTunes Radio was four months old and fielded as Beats Music debuted, had signs of encouragement for both.  Awareness of Beats was already 9%.  Meanwhile, iTunes Radio had been listened to by 8% of respondents in the previous month, making it third to Pandora and almost tied with iHeartRadio (9%).

The rumored deal in which Apple will buy Beats for $3.2-billion has been characterized in one report already as a sign of Apple’s desperation to stay relevant in a streaming world. Some broadcasters will try to minimize the story by positioning it as  the combination of two underwhelming entities. And some don’t see this as a streaming music play at all. Read more

Moms and Media 2014: Mobile Momentum

It is a situation you don’t want to be caught in:  you leave the house, and forget your cell phone.  Dilemma:  do you get it, or forget it?  Go through the day feeling disconnected, out of touch and somewhat undressed?  No chance!  If you are a mom, you turn back and go get it.  After all, it is 2014–and according to our recent data, mobile is a must for moms.  The phone goes wherever she goes.

This mobile trend is highlighted throughout our latest report, Moms and Media 2014, where it is prevalent not only in the growing numbers for mobile device ownership, but also in the behavior change we see associated with it.  Habits like social networking, watching television and consuming online radio are directly impacted by the mobile lifestyle of moms.

According to this year’s report, which is drawn from the Infinite Dial series, 92% of moms own a cell phone and 69% of moms own a smartphone.  Smartphone ownership among moms continues to rise steadily and remains ahead of the total respondents 12+ from The Infinite Dial.

Moms and Media 2014 slides for Mobile Momentum blog post

Moms know the capabilities of their smartphones and they don’t want to be without them.  Smartphone moms keep their phones close, even more so than regular cell phone moms.  More than four -in- five (83%) of moms who own a smartphone said it is within arm’s length ‘always’ or ‘most of the time.’

Moms and Media 2014 slides for Mobile Momentum2

One of the biggest signals in moms’ shift to mobile is the significant difference in how they prefer to access Facebook.  In 2013, computer and cell phone were about equal, with roughly 45% of Facebook moms choosing each.   However in 2014, mobile has handily taken the title with 60% of moms saying they access Facebook most through cell phone.

Moms and Media 2014 slides for Mobile Momentum3

Moms continue to share their television viewing time with time surfing the Internet, doing so even more in 2014 than in 2013. More than three quarters (76%) of moms share some part of their television viewing with Internet while at home.  Mobile devices are contributing to this because they allow moms to tote tablets and smartphones from room to room and even couch to couch.

Moms and Media 2014 slides for Mobile Momentum blog post4

Even traditional habits like listening to radio are seeing a bit of a mobile influence.  Moms on the move want to take their music with them.  Online radio fits this need nicely.  On average, moms reported more than 12 hours of online radio listening in the last week.

Moms and Media 2014 slides for Mobile Momentum blog post5

The mobile momentum is apparent in these data points as well as throughout the entire report.  Download the full Moms and Media 2014 FINAL REPORT here, or view the Slideshare presentation below.

These data points were taken from The Infinite Dial 2014, from Edison Research and Triton Digital. The full study is available here, or on Slideshare.

How the Survey was Conducted:  A total of 2,023 persons were interviewed to investigate Americans’ use of digital platforms and new media.  From January 13 to February 12, 2014, telephone interviews were conducted with respondents age 12 and older who were selected via Random Digit Dial (RDD) sampling. The study includes a total of 808 cell phone interviews.

“Infinite Dial 2014″ Format: Rock P1s Care About Keeping Current With Music and Most Use AM/FM Radio To Do So

Somerville, New Jersey — May 6, 2014  — P1 listeners to stations that play today’s Rock are aggressively interested in keeping up-to-date with music, and they turn to AM/FM radio in greater numbers than the average listener to do so.

Half of Classic Rock/Classic Hits radio P1 listeners say it is important to keep up-to-date with music.

These and other key findings are from “The Infinite Dial 2014: A Look at Rock P1s” and “A Look at Classic Rock/Classic Hits P1s.” The new reports are the latest in the continuing series of format breakouts from Edison Research’s influential “Infinite Dial” study, released in March of this year.

Rock P1s are first among any format’s partisans in saying that it is “very” or “somewhat” important to them to keep up with music (69% vs. 47% of respondents overall). Even 49% of P1s to Classic Rock/Classic Hits say that music discovery remains similarly important to them. This finding comes at a time when many Active Rock stations are decreasing their reliance on new music, and Alternative stations are just starting to increase their percentage of recent music.

While Rock P1s are often thought of as the listeners with the most choices for music discovery, 79% say they use AM/FM radio to find out about music, compared to 75% of all respondents.

Respondents to Edison Research’s 2014 “The Infinite Dial” are asked to name the radio station they listen to most, each of which is individually coded by format. The Rock breakouts are based on 91 P1s to Alternative, Active Rock, and Triple-A radio stations. There are 112 respondents who are P1 to a Classic Rock, Adult Hits, or Classic Hits station.

With Rock and Oldies/Classic Rock formats so heavily represented on satellite radio, it is also interesting to note that P1s of those formats have a slightly higher subscription rate to SiriusXM Satellite Radio, with 18% of Rock P1s and 17% of Classic Rock/Classic Hits P1s having a satellite radio subscription, vs. 15% of the overall sample.

While both formats are sometimes thought of as male-dominated, especially when “Rock” stations consider their target audience, 57% of Classic Rock/Classic Hits P1s are male, while 63% of Rock P1s are male.

Released in early March 2014 and sponsored by Triton Digital, “The Infinite Dial” surveyed more than 2,000 respondents aged 12 and older. Now in its twenty-second edition, “The Infinite Dial” has become digital audio’s annual report card. The format reports contain further information about device usage, Online Radio listening, social networking, and more.

Download “The Infinite Dial 2014: A Look at Rock P1s” here.

Download “The Infinite Dial 2014: A Look at Classic Rock/Classic Hits P1s” here.

The full “Infinite Dial 2014″ study is available here.

About Edison Research:
Edison Research conducts survey research and provides strategic information to a broad array of clients, including Activision, AMC Theatres, Disney, Dolby Laboratories, Google, Gulf News, the U.S. International Broadcasting Bureau, Pandora, Samsung, Siemens, Sony, St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Time Warner and Yahoo. Edison Research works with many of the largest American radio ownership groups, including Bonneville, Emmis, Entercom, CBS Radio and Radio One. Another specialty for Edison is its work for media companies throughout the world, conducting research in North America, South America, Africa, Asia, and Europe. Edison Research is the sole provider of election exit poll data for the National Election Pool comprised of ABC, CBS, CNN, FOX, NBC and the Associated Press. Edison is also the leading provider of consumer exit polling and has conducted face-to-face research in almost every imaginable venue.

About Triton Digital:
Triton Digital® is a mid-stage technology company focused on the digital audio industry. More leading publishers – including CBS, Pandora, Entercom and Slacker – use the Triton platform to enrich their content and deliver it to a global audience than that of any other company. Triton’s Webcast Metrics product is the MRC-accredited industry standard in digital audio measurement. Its Ad Injector technology delivers billions of impressions to millions of streams each month. Its ad exchange, a2x, is the only programmatic audience buying platform for audio and has broad adoption across both publishers and agencies. Triton Digital creates meaningful, amplified connections between audio, audience, and advertisers.