The Top 50 Most Listened To Podcasts in the U.S. Q3 2021

Edison Research announces the comprehensive U.S. Top 50 Podcast chart for Q3 2021. This list ranks the 50 biggest podcasts by audience size, based on the Podcast Consumer Tracking Report, the only podcast measurement service that measures the relative audience size and demographics of all podcast networks. The Podcast Consumer Tracking Report is the only measurement based on actual listening, not downloads.

The top shows based on measurement from Q4 2020 – Q3 2021 are as follows:

  1. The Joe Rogan Experience
  2. The Daily
  3. Crime Junkie
  4. This American Life
  5. Stuff You Should Know
  6. My Favorite Murder
  7. Pod Save America
  8. Serial
  9. Office Ladies
  10. Call Her Daddy

Scroll down to see the Top 50 list.

“We are continuing to see strong performances from the true crime and news categories. What I find most compelling is the strong movement by some of the independent shows on the chart. It’s a testament to how remarkable this medium is that both large networks and independent creators continue to be able to amass a sizable audience.” said Edison Research SVP Tom Webster.

The Edison Research Top 50 Podcasts of 2021 list is derived from data collected continuously from Q4 2020 – Q3 2021, from surveying weekly podcast consumers ages 18 and older in the U.S. Participants indicate which podcasts they listened to in the past week along with a variety of demographic, psychographic, and purchase behavior information. The results are then coded and analyzed to ascertain the genre, network, and sales representation for each podcast. The relative audience size of each podcast network is then calculated and expressed as the percentage of weekly podcast listeners reached by that network. Surveys of over 8,000 podcast listeners were conducted Q4 2020 through Q3 2021.

Current subscribers to the Podcast Consumer Tracker include the top networks in podcasting as well as leading technology platforms, and is growing quarterly. Subscribers include SXM Media, Google, NPR, Spotify, Wondery, ESPN/ABC/Disney, WarnerMedia, and more.

For information about the Podcast Consumer Tracker, contact Edison Research SVP Tom Webster at info@edisonresearch.com.

The Black Podcast Listener Report 2021

Click here to download The Black Podcast Listener Report 2021

Click here to download The Black Podcast Listener Report 2021 press release

The first-ever comprehensive research on Black podcast listeners in the United States, The Black Podcast Listener Report, was presented by Gabriel Soto, Director of Research at Edison Research, Nidia Serrano, Senior Director Sales Marketing Strategy at SXM Media, and Natasha Stockton, Director, Communications Planning at Mindshare. 

The study was conducted by Edison Research in partnership with  SXM Media and Mindshare. 

Thirty-six percent of Black Americans age 18+ are monthly podcast listeners, and this report examines how Black Americans consume podcasts, including podcast discovery, device usage, and reasons for listening. 

The report also includes findings on how Black Americans feel about podcast advertisements, podcasts with video components, the topics and genres they are most interested in, and the importance of black creators in podcasting. Over 2,500 Black Americans age 18+ were surveyed for this groundbreaking study. 

The Latino Podcast (non) Listener Report 2021

Click here for The U.S. Latino Podcast (non) Listener Report 2021 in English

Click here for The U.S. Latino Podcast (non) Listener Report 2021 in Spanish

Scroll down to view a recording of the webinar

U.S. Latinos are Primed for Podcasts
67% of U.S. Latino podcast non-listeners already listen to spoken word audio  

Forty-four percent of U.S. Latinos have never listened to a podcast and 20% have not listened to a podcast in the last month, but a new study finds that 67% of U.S. Latinos who don’t listen to podcasts already listen to spoken word audio.

The U.S. Latino Podcast Listener Report 2021, released in July 2021 by Edison Research, focused on the 36% of Latinos who are monthly podcast listeners. Today a follow-up report was released, The 2021 U.S Latino Podcast (non) Listener Report, examining the 64% of U.S. Latinos age 18+ who are not monthly podcast listeners. 

The U.S Latino Podcast (non) Listener Report 2021 was commissioned by  Adonde MediaLWC Studios, LibsynPRXSimplecastSonoroSXM Media, and was conducted by Edison Research. The study is the only comprehensive research on Latino podcast listeners in the United States.

The reason most U.S. Latinos are not listening to podcasts? Seventy percent of those who aren’t monthly podcast listeners say that podcasts ‘just aren’t for them.’” The next most popular reasons: 48% say they don’t have enough time to listen and 47% say that podcasts are too long.

Some reasons U.S. Latinos might listen to podcasts? Forty-three percent of monthly podcast non-listeners say they would be interested if there were podcasts available on the topics they are interested in, 33% said they would be interested if podcasts were easier to discover, and 28% said they would be interested if a well-known personality they liked hosted a podcast.

Further education around podcast access and subscription is needed: 23% of U.S. Latino podcast non-listeners say they don’t really understand what a podcast is, 29% say they are not so sure how to listen to a podcast, and 31% say they don’t really know how to find a podcast. Thirty-one percent say they have to pay to subscribe to a podcast. 

U.S. Latinos who don’t listen to podcasts are more likely to be women, and more likely to be age 55+. U.S. Latino monthly podcast listeners are 58% Men, 42% Women v. 44% Men, 56% Women for non-listeners, and monthly podcast listeners are 8% age 55+ v. 30% age 55+ for non-listeners. 

This new research shows 58% of U.S. Latino podcast non-listeners use YouTube weekly for music listening, and according to The U.S Latino Podcast Listener Report released in July, YouTube is the top platform for podcast listening among monthly podcast listeners. This means video, particularly YouTube, will be an important point of entry for U.S. Latinos to podcasting. 

Findings from the study debuted in a webinar on September 16, presented by Gabriel Soto, Director of Research at Edison Research, and Elsie Escobar, She Podcasts Co-founder and Community Manager at Libsyn. 

“Since many Latino podcast non-listeners already listen to spoken word audio, and so many use YouTube and streaming audio platforms for other content, they are poised for adoption of the platform,” said Soto. “Today we saw that Latino non-listeners expressed joy in listening to podcasts for the first time, and that’s another reason Latinos have adopted the platform at such a high rate.” 

According to Escobar, “Bilingual or multi-lingual content is and will become more and more important to grow Latino non-podcast listeners. Bilingual podcasts are an opportunity to re-connect and re-build our identities as we are, plus create bridges for all of our Latino and Hispanic experiences within the U.S. and beyond. 

View a replay of the webinar below:

For more information on the partners in this study, please visit, Adonde MediaLWC Studios, LibsynPRXSimplecastSonoro, and SXM Media. 

How This Study Was Conducted
Online interviews were conducted with 2,500+ U.S. Hispanic/Latino adults age 18+ in May 2021. The data was weighted to the age/sex/country of origin of U.S. Hispanic/Latino population and The Infinite Dial 2021 podcast listening statistics. The survey was offered in English and Spanish, and 17% of total respondents took the survey in Spanish.  

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, Oracle, the U.S. International Broadcasting Bureau, Pandora, Samsung, Siemens, Sony, The Gates Foundation, and Univision. Edison is the leading podcast research company in the world and has conducted research on the medium for NPR, Slate, ESPN, PodcastOne, WNYC Studios, and many more companies in the space.  Another specialty for Edison is its work for media companies throughout the world, conducting research in North America, South America, Africa, Asia, Australia, and Europe. Edison Research is also the leading provider of consumer exit polling and has conducted face-to-face research in almost every imaginable venue. Since 2004, Edison Research has been the sole provider of Election Day data to the National Election Pool, conducting exit polls and collecting precinct vote returns to project and analyze results for every major presidential primary and general election. 

The Top 50 Most Listened to Podcasts in the U.S. Q2 2021

Edison Research announces the comprehensive U.S. Top 50 Podcast chart for Q2 2021. This list ranks the 50 biggest podcasts by audience size, based on the Podcast Consumer Tracking Report, the only podcast measurement service that measures the relative audience size and demographics of all podcast networks. The Podcast Consumer Tracking Report is the only measurement based on actual listening, not downloads.

The top shows based on measurement from Q3 2020 – Q2 2021 are as follows:

  1. The Joe Rogan Experience
  2. The Daily
  3. Crime Junkie
  4. This American Life
  5. Stuff You Should Know
  6. My Favorite Murder
  7. Pod Save America
  8. Office Ladies
  9. Serial
  10. The Ben Shapiro Show

Scroll down to see the Top 50 list. The top three podcasts, The Joe Rogan Experience, The Daily, and Crime Junkie, also ranked in 1-2-3 order in the Top 50 Podcasts of 2020.

“This is the second anniversary of the Podcast Consumer Tracker, and the top shows have been fairly consistent over that time. Because our research covers the entire space, regardless of publisher or listening application, we have been able to report that stability even as the space continues to evolve,” said Edison Research SVP Tom Webster.

The Edison Research Top 50 Podcasts of 2021 list is derived from data collected continuously from Q3 2020 – Q2 2021, from surveying weekly podcast consumers ages 18 and older in the U.S. Participants indicate which podcasts they listened to in the past week along with a variety of demographic, psychographic, and purchase behavior information. The results are then coded and analyzed to ascertain the genre, network, and sales representation for each podcast. The relative audience size of each podcast network is then calculated and expressed as the percentage of weekly podcast listeners reached by that network. Surveys of over 8,000 podcast listeners were conducted Q3 2020 through Q2 2021.

“What is fascinating about these data is that we are seeing some marked differences between people who primarily get their podcasts through Apple Podcasts, those who primarily use Spotify, and those who mainly use YouTube. The character of the shows–and of the audiences–differs by platform,” added Webster.

Current subscribers to the Podcast Consumer Tracker include the top networks in podcasting as well as leading technology platforms, and is growing quarterly. Subscribers include SXM Media, Google, NPR, Wondery, ESPN/ABC/Disney, WarnerMedia, and more.

For information about the Podcast Consumer Tracker, contact Edison Research SVP Tom Webster at info@edisonresearch.com.

 

About Edison Research

Edison Research is the leading podcast research company in the world and has conducted research on the medium for NPR, Wondery, PodcastOne, Slate, Spotify, Stitcher/Midroll, ESPN, WNYC Studios, and many more companies in the space. The company’s annual The Infinite Dial® study has been the most widely-cited data in the podcasting space since 2005, and Share of Ear® from Edison Research remains the only single-source measure in America of the relative size of podcast listening compared to other audio media. In 2019, the company introduced the Podcast Consumer Tracker, a quarterly study that provides the only comprehensive data on podcast listening by network in the world. Edison Research has been the sole provider of Election Day data to the National Election Pool for 17 years, conducting exit polls since 2004, and collecting real-time vote results in all 50 states to project and analyze results for every major presidential primary and general election.

Edison Announces Listener Survey Template For Podcasters

We are pleased to announce the release of the Edison Research Podcast Listener Survey, a free, “do it yourself” template for podcasters to use to conduct their own audience research. Anyone can download and adapt this template for their own usage—no registration or email is required.

Most individual podcasters strive to learn more about their listeners, but not every podcaster is in a position to hire a research company.  Edison Research has been investing in podcasting and individual podcasters for over fifteen years, and this survey template allows anyone who wants to solicit listener feedback to accomplish that goal.

For those seeking third party validation for sponsorship purposes or anyone else who wants to outsource their survey, Edison Research is offering a paid, managed option, but the free DIY version is available now for anyone to use as they see fit without obligation. The template for the Edison Research Podcast Listener Survey, along  with more information, is available at : https://www.edisonresearch.com/edison-research-podcast-listener-survey/.