Digital Audio Consumption Grows, Even
In A Pandemic
In new data from eMarketer, we learn that digital audio continues to grow even in the wake of a global pandemic. And by grow, they mean that the time users spend listening to this type of content continues to increase. Early in the pandemic, this didn't necessarily look like it would be the case, as homebound consumers turned to traditional TV or social media (or both) leading many researchers to suggest digital audio would lose some ground.
See What Happened With Digital Audio During
So the definition of digital audio for the purposes of this research was, "music/other audio content delivered within a website or app (e.g. AM/FM online streams), podcasts (streamed or downloaded), radio stations, and streaming services; excludes other downloaded audio files (e.g. music MP3s) and digital terrestrial/satellite radio services that are delivered over the air."
Continuing To Gain In Popularity With Users
Separately, eMarketer has also been conducting surveys and studying trends in digital media – in their case focusing on the rapid growth in time spent by users listening to various forms of digital content. Early in the pandemic, it looked as though users were turning to more traditional media, such as TVs and social media. Still others focused on digital video and gaming. This led eMarketer to revise their forecast suggesting that the time spent with digital audio would actually decline by 1.0%.
Although the rate of growth (red line) is slowing, users will continue to spend more time listening to digital audio (black bars in hours:minutes) [Click to enlarge]
Stalled In The 1st Half, Consumption Takes Off
In 2nd Half
When you consider how different 2020 was compared to 2019, it is easy to understand why researchers forecasted reduced time listening to digital audio. Everyone was working remotely, quarantined in their homes. Their only commute was the few feet inside their home from their kitchen to wherever they had set up their office. With many people listening to digital audio typically on their commute, there was bound to be a reduction in hours spent with with this content now that they were, essentially, commute-less.
Back To It 'With Gusto'
Interestingly, the market researcher noted that patterns and preferences in consuming digital audio changed during 2020 with most Americans working and learning from home. Popular apps like Pandora and Spotify said their data showed more users consuming via smart speakers and smart TVs. Also, time-of-day consumption patterns changed as well, with weekday consumption taking on the characteristics of past weekend consumption.
The data also captured the growing popularity of podcasts with an "unexpected spike in popularity, as long-form audio engagement became easier to undertake at any given time of day."
Users Will Continue to Increase Their Listening Time; A 2021 Milestone
The study also determined that 70% of U.S. adults listened to digital audio content at least once a month in 2020. And 91.7% of them consumed that content via mobile.
For more information on this and other research, visit: emarketer.com.
Founded in the late 2000's by me, Ted Green, the goal here is to use my industry experience and knowledge on business and marketing to bring you information, insights, and advice to help you make better, more informed decisions in building a better strategy for your business.
One way we do this is by bringing you powerful stories from around the Tech industry. But wait, you say! Aren't there already a lot of media groups doing that? Well, not the way Strata-gee does! Enjoy the Music.com invites you to discover all the great information on Strata-gee's website.