Weekly Insights · May 1, 2024

Where to Find Light Audio Listeners

By Edison Research

This post is from Edison’s Weekly Insights email.  Please click here if you would like to subscribe

How do Americans 13+ spend their day with audio? Edison Research’s Share of Ear® study answers this question by having respondents nationwide complete a detailed one-day audio listening diary. This diary details what they listen to, where they listen, what device they listen on, and for how long. While on average respondents spend about four hours per day listening to all forms of audio, some spend hours and hours with audio sources while others spend little to no time at all. This week’s insight explores the audio habits of Americans at both ends of the listening-frequency spectrum.   

  • Heavy listeners are those who spend four or more hours per day with audio   
  • Light listeners are people who spend one hour or less with audio each day    

One key difference between heavy and light listeners is where they spend time listening to audio in a typical day. As you might imagine, heavy listeners infuse audio sources into all parts of their day in a number of different locations. They spend the most time with audio at home (59%), followed by in a car/truck (21%), then work (16%). A small fraction of their time (4%) is spent listening in other places.   

We see a completely different story when we observe where light listeners spend their time with audio. The car is key to reaching this audience, since light listeners spend the majority (60%) of their audio time listening in a car or truck. In fact, most light listeners (52% of them) only listen to audio in a car or truck. While some light listeners do listen in other locations, these people can be characterized largely as those who mostly just interact with audio while driving.  

Understanding Share of Ear data is important if you want to think strategically about how to reach priority audiences with specific content or advertising. If you are looking to engage audiences who are harder to reach with audio sources, optimizing your advertisements and content for the in-car experience is essential. Additional information, such as the demographic composition of each of these audience segments, is available to Share of Ear subscribers. Visit the Edison Research website to find out how to become a Share of Ear subscriber. 

Get our latest insights delivered to your inbox.