Weekly Insights · July 1, 2022

Podcasting’s Opportunity in Wide Open Spaces

By Edison Research

By Larry Rosin

If you live in one part of America, last year it may have seemed like everyone was talking about “Succession” on HBO, and hardly anyone was talking about “Yellowstone.”  And naturally, the opposite was true in other parts.  Speaking broadly, Succession is a hit in America’s big cities and suburbs, while Yellowstone started as a phenomenon in smaller cities and towns before spreading its popularity into more densely populated areas.  New data from Edison Research’s Infinite Dial study – sponsored by Wondery and Art19 – shows that as of today podcasting is more of a “Succession” story.
At the upcoming Podcast Movement conference in Dallas, Edison Senior Director of Research Gabriel Soto will be speaking about areas of opportunity in the podcasting space.  One area of opportunity he will be talking about is the gap in podcast listening between smaller cities and rural parts of America.  As the graph below shows, monthly podcast listening in America’s small cities and rural areas lags listening in both large cities and suburbs by about 25%. 

Those who would subscribe to this email probably don’t know anyone who doesn’t listen to podcasts, at least occasionally.  At the same time, still 38% of all Americans age 12 and over have never listened to one.  This number rises to 46% in small cities and rural America. 
We in the podcasting space regularly remark that with four million titles, there’s a podcast for everyone.  And while that’s surely right in theory, that doesn’t mean that enough of a match has yet happened to bring all the possible listeners to the space.  One might argue that indeed there are a lot more podcasts talking about Succession than Yellowstone, and that might be part of the issue.

Get our latest insights delivered to your inbox.