Super Listeners 2019 from PodcastOne and Edison Research

Weekly podcast listeners who consume more than five hours of podcasts per week are the subject of the first-ever Super Listeners study from PodcastOne and Edison Research. These podcasting “Super Listeners,” podcasting’s heaviest listeners, have emerged as valuable targets for advertisers and trusted allies for podcast sponsors according to this groundbreaking study.

• Seventy percent of Super Listeners say they have considered a new product or service as a result of hearing an ad on a podcast.

• More than half (57%) of Super Listeners consume more than 8 hours per week of podcast content, which means their potential exposure to podcast advertising is high relative to the rest of the podcast audience.

The topline findings from the study were debuted last week at the IAB Podcast Upfront in New York, and complete findings were presented in a live, online presentation earlier today by PodcastOne CEO Peter Morris and Edison Research SVP Tom Webster.

According to Edison Research Senior Vice President, Tom Webster, “We were very eager to look at the heaviest users of podcasting as a kind of “early warning system” for the efficacy of podcasting advertisement, since they will have had more exposure to podcast advertising than anyone. What we found was that not only don’t they mind podcast ads—they actually have a very positive effect, which is even more remarkable when you consider that Super Listeners are otherwise engaging in active ad avoidance behavior.”

“As the industry leader, we wanted to provide this first of its kind study to deliver meaningful details on the habits of podcasting’s most loyal consumers. We believe this will be a great benefit to the industry as a whole,” said PodcastOne CEO, Peter Morris. “Edison is the recognized authority for research in podcasting. We’re proud to be the first podcast company to work with them, beginning when PodcastOne was founded in 2012, and continue to do so to ensure our advertising partners receive the best audience insights and analysis to maximize their campaign goals.”

• Despite the fact that 50% of Super Listeners are actively trying to limit their exposure to commercials across all video and audio platforms, 44% agree that they pay more attention to advertising on podcasts than other media, and 37% say podcasts are the best way for an advertiser to reach them.

• Six in ten Super Listeners appreciate podcast advertisers for supporting their favorite podcasts, and 44% say they think more positively about companies that advertise on the podcasts they regularly listen to.

• Super Listeners identify podcasts as the mainstream medium least likely to have too many ads; however, nearly half (49%) indicate that they have noticed an increase in podcast advertising over the last year. Thirty-five percent of Super Listeners perceive that advertising breaks in podcasts have gotten longer; 59% believe that they have not changed. Thus, the industry must be cognizant to maintain the premium element of these ads.

This industry-wide study showcases the power of podcasting’s most active consumers, including how they react to advertising, the role ads play in their listening experience, and what the industry must be cautious about in maximizing advertising impact. The presentation is now available for download and the webinar is available for viewing.

Click here to download Super Listeners 2019 from PodcastOne and Edison Research.

For more information, visit PodcastOne or Edison Research.

About PodcastOne
PodcastOne, (www.PodcastOne.com) the nation’s leading advertiser-supported podcast network, was founded by Norman Pattiz, founder of radio-giant Westwood One. The network currently hosts more than 300 of today’s most popular podcasts, including Adam Carolla, Shaquille O’Neal, Steve Austin, Kaitlyn Bristowe, Dan Patrick, A&E’s Cold Case, Spencer and Heidi Pratt, Tip “T.I.” Harris, Scheana Shay, Heather and Terry Dubrow, Jim Harbaugh, Ladygang, Dr. Drew, Chael Sonnen, Rich Eisen, Barbara Boxer and hundreds more.

About Edison Research
Edison Research conducts survey research and provides strategic information in over 50 countries for clients including AMC Theatres, AMC Theatres, Amazon, Apple, The Brookings Institute, Facebook, The Gates Foundation, Google, the U.S. International Broadcasting Bureau, Oracle, Pandora, The Pew Research Center, Samsung, Spotify, and SiriusXM Radio. The national tracking study The Infinite Dial® and the syndicated Share of Ear® are two of the most widely cited studies in the audio space. Edison is also the leading podcast research company in the world and has conducted research for NPR, Slate, ESPN, PodcastOne, WNYC Studios, and many more companies in the podcasting space. Edison’s network of more than 20,000 experienced interviewers allows the company to conduct research in almost any location. Since 2004, Edison Research has been the sole provider of Election Day data to the National Election Pool. For the 2020 U.S. elections, Edison will provide exit polls and will tabulate the national vote across every county in the United States for ABC News, CBS News, CNN, and NBC News.

SheListens: Insights on Women Podcast Listeners

Click here to download SheListens: Insights on Women Podcast Listeners

Edison Research Senior Vice President Melissa Kiesche gave the following presentation on October 12 at She Podcasts LIVE in Atlanta.

It’s 9am on Saturday morning. While I know that pie charts and bar graphs may not be everyone’s favorite (although, totally mine!), I love that it is data that can help frame our conversations and direct change.

My talk today is entitled – SheListens. While we’ve spent much of the last day or so focused on how to encourage more women to host, produce, write and edit, what we can also do as women in this industry is to bring more women listeners to all this fabulous women-created content.

Thirteen years ago, we added podcast questions to our annual Infinite Dial® study.  In 2006 the ONLY way to listen to a podcast was to search for content and then listen on your computer speakers or download it to your iPod. It was a tech-heavy ask for people who were used to just popping in a CD, or tuning their radio dial or maybe listening to an Internet radio station via their desktop. So, it makes sense that this was an industry born from the depths of male tech culture.

In addition, content was forever heavily male focused, so it’s not really surprising that women have lagged far behind in their interest in and adoption of podcasting. But, for the most part, these barriers have gone away. You can listen to podcasts in a dozen different ways – none of which require you to use one device to download to another. And, anyone that has spent any time looking at podcasts on iTunes or Spotify knows that there is ample content out there for anyone and everyone.

So, why is it that women are still lagging behind men when it comes to listening? We’re going to spend a little time today on this. We’ll look at women who are familiar with podcasting, but are NOT listeners, as well as compare some key podcast metrics between men and women listeners.

Beyond the buttoned up quantitative research we do, we take a lot of pride our qualitative research – it really gives us a chance to get in front of podcast listeners and pick their brains about their listening habits.

To go back a moment, for those of you that are unfamiliar with our Infinite Dial study. It’s really our flagship study, where we track a whole range of digital media consumption habits and behaviors and have been doing so for 22 years. It’s a nationally representative study, conducted using the highest standards in market research.

And, for podcasting, Infinite Dial has become the industry’s annual report card. An opportunity to understand where we came from and hypothesize on where we are going.

So, let’s start with the good news. All those metrics I talked about, they are up! We were super excited this year to say that after years of 1-2 percentage point increases, now over half of Americans (144 million people) say they have EVER listened to a podcast.

 

That’s a seven-percentage point increase over last year. And, just under one-third of Americans (90 million people) say they have listened to a podcast in the last month. A six-percentage point increase over last year.

But, today we’re talking about listeners who identify as women. And, when you break it down, we see that women are quite a bit less likely to have listened in the last month: 36% of Men vs. 29% of Women have listened in the last month.

This means that when you look at the composition of monthly podcast listeners, 54% are Men and 46% are Women.

 

And yet, the familiarity of the term podcasting is just about equal – 72% of Men and 69% of Women are familiar with the term, where up until 3 years ago, there was about a 10 percentage point gap.

So, while the gap is closing, Why the persistent lag? If they know what a podcast is, why haven’t they tried listening?

What’s unique about women in terms of their consumption habits, their content preferences? What can we learn about women that will help convert them from a non-listener to a listener and from a casual listener to a more voracious one?

Let’s start with those who are familiar with podcasting, but are not listeners. We had the opportunity to sit down with people who were familiar with the term podcasting but did not listen. So, let’s learn more about the non-listeners.

It was those conversations that lead us to include questions to non-listeners in our annual study. So, we asked people if the following were reasons they did NOT listen to podcasts.

 

First off, which I think is great news, is that this does NOT seem to be a content problem. Women are LESS likely to say that there aren’t podcasts that cover topics they are interested in. So, even non-listeners are aware of all that is out there for them to listen to.

But, much of this suggests there is still a bit of a tech hurdle to gain additional women listeners. And, for sure, that was originally the case. But, that is now starting to go away. A podcast app is NOT the only way to listen to a podcast. In addition to apps, listeners can access content via Spotify, Pandora, YouTube and direct links on social.

And, as the content (that you are all producing!) continues to get out into the world it will be worth it for new listeners to do whatever they need to do to access that content.

Now, back to our actual listeners. For Podcast Movement this year, we took a deeper look at Rookie monthly podcast listeners (those who started listening in the last six months) and veteran monthly listeners (started listening 3 or more years ago). We wanted to see the difference between those who have been dedicated listeners for years and those who are just getting started.

And as part of that study, we sat down with some veteran and rookie listeners and this is what they said.

After defining the length of listenership for the groups, one of the first things we looked at was the gender composition of each group. And, let me tell you, my colleagues and I practically leaped in air when we took a look.

So, let’s start with those veteran listeners – 63% are men and only 37% are women. Now, look at the rookies – 47% are men, but the majority, 53% are women.

This is the number excites me the most. It says we are at a tipping point! And, I feel it every day in my household. I have twin daughters – they are five. When we get in the car, the FIRST thing they ask is for me to turn on a podcast!

When asked if they might like music instead, they’ll choose the podcast every single time. And, as an aside, the content they choose is about a gal-powered as you can get.  I did a quickie content analysis on all their favorite shows and of their top shows eight of the ten feature a female host, co-host or in the case of a fictional podcast, a female protagonist.

So, while they may not qualify to take our survey for another seven years or so, I know their listening (and that of their peers), will help to rocket women listenership farther.

And, when women become listeners they are committed to the cause!

Women are listening to just about as many podcasts on average per week as men – 7.2 podcasts vs. 6.8 podcasts.  They also subscribe to just about as many podcasts as men (3.2 vs. 3.4 on average) but, more impressively, they are on average doing more hours of listening then men – 7.3 hours vs. 5.9 hours.

While women are less likely to download and listen to a podcast within 48 hours – 72% of women vs. 83% of men, they eventually listen to 76% of all the podcasts they download (same as men at 77%). Women are also a bit more likely to listen to the entire podcast (54% of women vs. 52% of men). And, again, super impressively, women are more likely to say they are listening to MORE podcasts than one year ago – 45% of women vs. 39% of men.

Now, why do women say they are listening to podcasts? We asked seven different reasons why they might listen and this is how they ranked:

And, everyone knows that women are the ULTIMATE multi-taskers. On any given Saturday, you can find me loading groceries out of my cart at checkout and responding to an urgent work email, while simultaneously leading my daughters in a sorting activity – red fruits in one bag, boxed items in another.

So, this next stat is right in line: 75% of men say they ever listen to a podcast while not doing anything else, while only 65% of women listeners say the same. So, women are a bit more likely to sometimes be multi-tasking while listening. They are consuming your content, while still going about their day-to-day. And to many of them, it’s the soundtrack of their day.

We recently talked to a group of moms about how they listen to podcasts and how it fits in to their daily lives.

Our next video brings up discovery – we know why women listen, but how is it that they discover what they are listening to. Let’s watch.

While women and men discover podcasts in many of the same ways, their primary means of discovery is quite different. Women are more likely to use “recommendations from friends and family” as their primary source of finding out about podcasts– 25% vs. 18% (#1 among women and #2 among men).

Women are social. They are far more likely overall to use social media and women podcast listeners are no exception. Women listeners are more likely to use ANY social media than men listeners – 96% vs. 87%, especially Facebook 80% vs. 58%,  Instagram 57% vs. 43% and  Pinterest 59% vs. 21%.

And, for podcast discovery social media really just becomes an extension of their recommendations from friends and family. Nineteen percent of women listeners use social media as their primary means vs. 14% (#2 among women and #3 among men). So, that means that 44% of women say their primary means of podcast discovery is via recommendations or social media compared to only 32% of men.

What’s the number one means of podcast discovery for men? Far and above, it’s searching the Internet. Over a third (34%) of men listeners say it’s the number one way that they discover new podcasts, while only 18% of women listeners use it as their primary means.

We also asked people what topics they would be interested in listening to on podcasts. And, while there are some commonalities here in the top ten (e.g music, news/information, entertainment/celebrity/gossip, history, mystery/thriller and true crime), what’s most striking here is that wellness/self-improvement tops the list for the type of content that women would be interested in listening to on podcasts. It’s number one for women and not even in the top ten for men. And, then, we have food at number three for women and again, not breaking the top ten for men.

And, while we learned before that women are well aware of all the content available out there, the Top Ten lists on both Apple, Spotify and Stitcher are not exactly reflecting the content preferences of women listeners.

Take a look at the Top Ten on Apple Podcasts.  I think we can say we have True Crime covered! Five of the top ten podcasts fall into that genre. Only ONE podcast makes the cut as a Wellness/Self-Improvement podcast and that’s The Happiness Lab with Dr. Laurie Santos. And, that one just launched on September 17th – so fingers crossed it remains a success.

The next Wellness/Self-Improvement-related podcast doesn’t show up on the list until #21 and that’s Dax Sheppard’s ArmChair Expert. No where do I see a food-related podcast.

Same patterns on both the Spotify and Stitcher Top Twenty.

Equally as important as the content is the advertising included in each episode. And, while I know that many of you have not yet taken on advertisers yet, if you do, this is key. So, I end with a bit of a warning – maybe more of a challenge than a warning. In addition to understanding why and how they listen, I also felt compelled to understand how women perceive advertising on podcasts.

And, in my own humble opinion, advertisers don’t always do the best job in appealing to women on podcasts. So, when I saw this data (while it made me cringe), I was not surprised. Women are less likely to consider a brand advertised on a podcast than men. Only 38% of women vs. over half (52%) of men are at least somewhat likely to consider them.

At Edison Research, we host a Podcast Club (book club for podcasts) and our September listen was To Live and Die in LA. Their main advertiser was SimpliSafe –a security system for your home. Right on, right? Great connection between podcast about a murder and beefing up your home security so you feel safer.

But, another advertiser, who popped up later in the series, was Zola.com. For those of you who are unfamiliar, Zola is a wedding planning website. Women just LOVE hearing about a wedding planning site while unraveling the mystery of whether or not a man brutally murdered the woman with whom he was cheating in order to hide the affair from his fiancé.Cue the cringes of every woman in our Podcast Club.

But, there is a little light on this topic. And, it comes in the way of video we put together of women discussing audio advertising.

So, what does this tell us? For me, it’s simple. When a brand is properly aligned with a podcast and the execution is women-friendly, women can be equally as engaged with the advertising.

And, we know this from the dozens of brand lift studies we conduct every year. We’ve seen smashing successes when an advertiser takes the time to craft messaging that is relevant to the audience. But, we’ve also seen utter failures when an advertiser just repurposes advertising from another medium and doesn’t take the care to make it podcast-friendly.

So, not every advertiser belongs on every podcast. And, even if it is a product or service equally purchased by men and women, how that product is represented in a women-friendly podcast can and should be different. Tell the advertiser about your audience. You know who they are what they want to hear.

Conclusions

Let it be known that our differences as women hosts, producers, writers, editors (and market researchers) are our STRENGTHS. Being a woman involved in making all this content puts you in a powerful position to continue to move women’s listenership numbers in the right direction.

This is industry that is growing. As you saw, all the awareness and listening metrics have gone up, but there is still a gap between men and women. But, heck yea, rookie listeners are more likely to be women!

Let us not forget. Women are social creatures and they rely on their personal and social networks as their main means for discovery. Lean into that – create a community. If you are not already heavy on social, you need to increase your efforts there.

Also, that same listening gap between women and men is reflected pretty clearly in those Top Podcasts lists. We saw — women have different content preferences and the Top lists don’t yet mirror that. Let’s make sure we are producing what women want. Again, this is your strength. Women are undeniably going to be better at producing content for women.

And finally, advertising is just as important as the actual content. Push your sponsors to give you copy or the liberty to create copy that is appropriate for your listeners. Take on sponsors that speak to the desires of your audience. Sell to your advertisers that being a woman –producer gives you a leg up in knowing what women want.

For more on podcast research done by Edison Research, click here. 

The Infinite Dial Germany 2019

Click here to download  The Infinite Dial Germany 2019 

All of Germany is talking about the current audio boom, and through the The Infinite Dial® Germany, the newest release from the longest–running media usage study in the world, RTL Radio Deutschland now has research to confirm it.

The latest research finds that all age groups use radio and audio services in many scenarios, and through many platforms and distribution channels. With the results of the media usage study for the German market The Infinite Dial® Germany, RTL Radio Deutschland provides comprehensive data on digital media usage with a focus on audio. The study provides far-reaching insights into how people in Germany use media. It also shows a direct comparison with the U.S. market, from which important insights into audio trends can also be derived. The global U.S.-based research company Edison Research, which is responsible for the implementation of The Infinite Dial® in the U.S., Australia, Canada, and South Africa, was commissioned to carry out the study.

The Infinite Dial® Germany confirms the thriving listening and the enormous growth potential for podcasts and online audio services in Germany. Some of the top findings:

– In all age groups, and across all platforms and devices, radio and audio services are heavily used.

– In the car, radio is by far the most-used source of music, entertainment and information for almost 70% of Germans.

– 16-34 year-olds are increasingly listening to radio via radio apps on their mobile phones, streaming aggregators, or smart speakers. Thirty-eight percent of this group state that they no longer own a traditional radio receiver.

– Smart speakers are also gaining ground in Germany as 8% of Germans already own one or more of these devices. The Infinite Dial® Germany confirms RTL Radio Deutschland’s previous market estimates of around 12 million units sold. Each smart speaker owner currently has an average of 1.8 devices in their household.

– More than one third (35%) of 16-34 year olds in Germany listen to a podcast every month. Each user listens to an average of 5 podcasts per week.

– Podcast listeners have enormous potential as customers to marketers. They have an above-average income and are well educated.

Stephan Schmitter, CEO of RTL Radio Germany said, “The results of The Infinite Dial® Germany are a very important building block for the strategic development of our radio and audio world. They prove that we are on the right track with our diverse products. In addition to classic programs, on-demand offerings have a high usage rate. This confirms in particular the great potential for podcasts. With our platform AUDIO NOW and the founding of the podcast production company Audio Alliance, we have created an excellent basis at the right time to play a decisive role in shaping the attractiveness of this market from the user and customer point of view.

How the Study was Conducted:
The Infinite Dial® Germany is an in-depth look at the digital media consumer habits of Germans age 16+. In July of 2019, Edison Research conducted a national telephone survey of 1,000 Germans age 16 and older. The telephone data was weighted to national 16+ Germany population figures.

About RTL Radio Deutschland
RTL Radio Deutschland is the leading private radio group in Germany. Its 17 stations in 11 states reach millions of listeners daily. It derives its success from its profound experience in programming and content development. Leading stations like 104.6 RTL, Radio Hamburg and ANTENNE BAYERN profit from this know-how. RTL Radio Deutschland operates as a strategic partner following the slogan “Together we are stronger”.

About The Infinite Dial®
The Infinite Dial® is conducted by Edison Research, a global U.S.-based research. The Infinite Dial® is the longest running media consumption study in the United States and is now in the U.S., Australia, Canada, and South Africa. It provides reliable estimates and insightful data, and is widely used and cited by broadcasters, media companies, advertising agencies, and the financial community.

About Edison Research
Edison Research conducts surveys and provides strategic information to a wide range of clients. It is the world’s leading podcast research company and has researched the medium for major companies. Edison is also the leading provider of consumer research. Since 2004, Edison Research has been the only provider of election day data for the U.S. National Election Commission, conducting surveys to predict and analyze the results for each major presidential election.

Super Listeners 2019 from PodcastOne and Edison Research: Save the Date

Who Are Podcasting’s Super Listeners and Why Are They So Important?

Click here to reserve your space on Tuesday, October 22nd, 2 PM EDT for an informative webinar unpacking the results of the first Super Listener study from PodcastOne and Edison Research. PodcastOne CEO Peter Morris and Edison Research SVP Tom Webster will walk attendees through an exclusive look at podcasting’s heaviest listeners, their attitudes towards advertising, and how they view podcasting in the greater media landscape.

In every market there are avid users – the smaller number of consumers who account for the majority of demand. In the podcasting space, we call them ‘Super Listeners,’ those who spend multiple hours listening to podcasts each week.* These are the people most likely to hear podcasting ads and to really have an opinion about them. With both direct response and brand advertising increasing over the past few years, how do podcast consumers feel about the role of ads and commercial messages in the content they love?

To find out, PodcastOne and Edison Research have produced the first Super Listeners study to gauge consumer opinions on podcast advertising. These Super Listeners are more than just fans of the medium—they are exposed to more messages and ads than the average listener, and thus can serve as a kind of “early warning system” on the impact of advertising on podcasting.

We hope you will join us.

*Super Listeners listen to 5 or more hours of podcasting weekly

The Infinite Dial South Africa 2019

The Infinite Dial®, the leading study on digital audio from Edison Research, debuted in South Africa last week as Edison Research President Larry Rosin presented the findings in Johannesburg, Cape Town, and Durban. The study was commissioned by South Africa’s National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Commercial Radio Committee and sponsored by Triton Digital, the global technology and services leader to the digital audio and podcast industry. 

Following an online presentation of  The Infinite Dial South Africa earlier today, the findings exploring digital audio, mobile, smart speakers, podcast consumption, and social media among South Africans living within the major metro commercial areas, covering the upper two of the three SEM Supergroups (or upper three of the five SEM Clusters), are now available for download.

Click here to download The Infinite Dial South Africa 2019

The Infinite Dial® research for South Africa is patterned on the longest-running survey (1998) of digital media consumer behavior in the USA and provides an up-to-date profile of the South African digital consumer.

Findings include:

    • 88% of the South African major metro commercial population own smartphones.
    • 68% of the South African major metro commercial population have listened to AM/FM radio in the last week.
    • 44% of radio listening at home by the South African major metro commercial population was done on a non-radio device.
    • 39% of the South African major metro commercial population have listened to online audio in the past month.
    • 22% of the South African major metro commercial population are aware of podcasting, and 19% of the population have ever listened to a podcast.

View a recording of the webinar here:

How the Study was Conducted:
In July 2019 Edison Research conducted in-person interviews with a total of 1,510 persons aged 15+ living in South Africa within the major metro commercial areas, covering the upper two of the three SEM Supergroups (or upper three of the five SEM Clusters). The data was weighted to reflect the gender, age, and race of this population. The purpose of the study was to explore the digital audio, social media, mobile, radio, and podcast habits of South Africans.

About Edison Research:
Edison Research conducts survey research and provides strategic information in over 50 countries for clients including AMC Theatres, AMC Theatres, Amazon, Apple, The Brookings Institute, Facebook, The Gates Foundation, Google, the U.S. International Broadcasting Bureau, Oracle, Pandora, The Pew Research Center, Samsung, Spotify, and SiriusXM Radio. The national tracking study The Infinite Dial® and the syndicated Share of Ear® are two of the most widely-cited studies in the audio space. Edison is also the leading podcast research company in the world and has conducted research for NPR, Slate, ESPN, PodcastOne, WNYC Studios, and many more companies in the podcasting space.  Edison’s network of more than 20,000 experienced interviewers allows the company to conduct research in almost any location. Since 2004, Edison Research has been the sole provider of Election Day data to the National Election Pool. For the 2020 U.S. elections, Edison will provide exit polls and will tabulate the national vote across every county in the United States for ABC News, CBS News, CNN, and NBC News.

About the National Association of Broadcasters of South Africa
The NAB is a voluntary association funded entirely by its members, comprising radio and television players in the public, community and commercial spheres. The NAB regularly engages with policy makers on behalf of its members in advocating for an enabling broadcasting environment that is robust and sustainable. It promotes an industry grounded in the principles of democracy, diversity and freedom of expression.  A wide range of organisations belong to the NAB and hundreds of individuals working in the broadcasting and associated industries involve themselves in its activities.

About Triton Digital
Triton Digital® is the global technology and services leader to the digital audio and podcast industry. Operating in more than 40 countries, Triton provides innovative technology that enables broadcasters, podcasters, and online music services to build their audience, maximize their revenue, and streamline their day-to-day operations. In addition, Triton powers the global online audio industry with Webcast Metrics®, the leading online audio measurement service and Podcast Metrics, one of the first IAB certified podcast measurement services in the industry. With unparalleled integrity, excellence, teamwork, and accountability, Triton remains committed to connecting audio, audience, and advertisers to continuously fuel the growth of the global online industry.  Triton Digital is a wholly owned subsidiary of The E.W. Scripps Company (NASDAQ: SSP). For more information, visit www.TritonDigital.com.