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Survey: Radio Still Dominates The Audio Landscape

Here at WARM, people often ask us if radio is still important.

Many are under the impression that the death of traditional broadcast radio is right around the corner and don’t quite understand why a radio monitoring service like WARM is such an important tool for musicians. Isn’t the future in streaming? Isn’t radio ancient and irrelevant? Not so fast.

While streaming is obviously getting bigger and bigger, particularly among the younger generations, radio is still by far the dominant form of listening in the United States,the world’s biggest music market, as well as in many other countries. This was confirmed by the latest report by the marketing research firm Nielsen about people’s listening habits in the United States.

Below are some thought-provoking quotes and numbers from the report. The overall conclusion: while it’s relevance definitely isn’t what it once was, radio isn’t disappearing anytime soon.

‘As the audio landscape continues to expand, more and more options will become available to consumers as technology drives all media usage forward. Through all of these changes AM/FM radio continues to reach more people and garners the most time spent with audio.’

‘Each week, more Americans tune into AM/FM radio (93%) than watch television, or use smartphones, tablets or computers.’

‘AM/FM radio continues to reach significantly more people each week than any other medium in the U.S. at 228.5 million adults 18+ compared with 216.5 million for TV (live, DVR and time-shifted), 204 million for app/web on a smartphone, and 127.6 million for video on a smartphone. Looking at the audio landscape, broadcast radio’s weekly reach of 228.5 million also outpaces the 67.6 million for streaming audio, 35.9 million using satellite radio and 20.7 million consuming podcasts.’

‘Americans use radio five days per week, compared with three days for streaming on smartphones and tablets, and two days for streaming on a computer.’

‘When comparing gross minutes—the total time spent summed for all P18+ users—radio outpaces streaming audio by a factor of 14:1 in an average week.’

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