Webinars · June 14, 2024

Sports Audio Report

By Edison Research

The Sports Audio Report from Edison Research, SiriusXM Media, and GroupM 

Click here to download The Sports Audio Report. 

The Sports Audio Report from Edison Research, SiriusXM Media, and GroupM explores sports fandom in the U.S. and the role that audio content plays in fans’ engagement with sports and leagues.  

Audio plays an integral role in sports fandom: 64% of sports fans frequently or occasionally listen to sports content throughout the last year via audio, such as radio, podcasts, or SiriusXM. 

Findings were presented in a webinar by Gabriel Soto, Senior Director of Research at Edison Research, Melissa Paris, Vice President of Sales Research at SiriusXM Media, and Jen Soch, Executive Director, Channel Solutions at GroupM US.  

Top findings among sports fans include: 

  • Sports is a wide-reaching pastime as two-thirds of the American population, 186 million people age 13+, identify as sports fans. 
  • The majority of fans use sports to keep their family ties strong: 68% of sports fans say it brings their family closer together. 
  • Younger sports fans are interested in athletes’ lives beyond the field (or court, track or pool). The majority of Gen Z and Millennials closely follow the personal lives of athletes they like, beyond their sports careers

Top findings among those who listen to sports audio: 

  • The vast majority of sports audio listeners say they listen at least some of the time with other people. Sports podcast listeners and SiriusXM sports listeners are even more likely to co-listen.  
  • Sports listening has changed in the last 5 to 6 years. While the majority of sports audio listening still comes from AM/FM radio, podcast’s share of sports listening has almost doubled since 2018. 
  • Younger sports audio consumers are driving the momentum towards digital listening. 13–34-year-olds spend more of their sports audio listening time with podcasts than radio, at a 3:1 ratio. 
  • There’s demand for all kinds of viewpoints. Opportunity alert: 40% of sports audio listeners say there aren’t enough audio programs that cover the sports they like or follow; 40% say there aren’t enough that give different perspectives. 
  • Sports audio consumers take action: 63% of sports audio listeners have gathered more information about a company or product after hearing an ad on a sports podcast or sports audio program. Over half have ever purchased a product or service after hearing an ad on a sports podcast or sports audio program. 
  • Nearly 1 in 4 sports fans have cried because of the outcome of a sporting event they watched or listened to. 23% say yes, they have cried and 26% say they have come close to crying.

“The idea that sports is more than just a game is at the core of what drives fandom, audio consumption, and the benefits advertisers receive from sports audio. Family, community, and emotion drive this passion unlike any other. What brand wouldn’t want to be associated with this level of devotion?” 

Gabriel Soto, Senior Director of Research, Edison Research

Click here to download The Sports Audio Report. 

About the study 

The Sports Audio Report was based off an online study of over 3,500 U.S. individuals age 13+ who self-identify as sports fans (a four or higher on a 10-point scale). Sports fans are defined as someone who self-reports a four or higher on a 10-point scale where 1 means “not a fan at all” and 10 means a “super fan”. Sports listeners are defined in Edison Research’s Share of Ear as consuming sports audio content on their diary day. 

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