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Welcome to our final Weekly Insight of 2023! Instead of zooming in to examine a deep cut of data or to look at a particular group of listeners, we are doing the opposite this week. We are zooming out to take a larger look at how much time listeners in the U.S. spend with audio daily.
Creators of audio content, as well as advertisers who want to reach consumers, are interested in whether audio is maintaining its place in people’s lives. Edison Research’s Share of Ear® study has been measuring the amount of time the U.S. population 13+ spends listening to audio daily since 2014. At the inception of Share of Ear in 2014, the U.S. population 13+ spent four hours and 17 minutes a day listening to all audio sources.
Follow the bars through the years and you will initially see audio losing some daily minutes, hitting a low of three hours and 44 minutes in 2020. This trend reversed course though in 2021, when daily time spent with audio increased back to over four hours. And according to the latest Share of Ear data from Q3 2023, listeners in the U.S. spend an average of four hours and 11 minutes per day consuming audio content, essentially unchanged from the level of almost a decade ago.
It’s tough to think of another word here besides resilience. Audio sources remain competitive in the fight for people’s time, despite an overwhelming amount of video choices and changing consumer habits over time. U.S. listeners 13+ still dedicate over a quarter of their waking lives to audio consumption.
Those involved in selling advertisers into the audio space can consider using this dramatic evidence to help convince them to invest more. Audio can deliver enormous reach, frequency, and results.
We look forward to bringing you more insights in 2024 as we research emerging trends and continue to learn more about this valuable audio time.