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Radio Proves a Prime Source of New Music for Listeners

by MarketingCharts staff
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4 in 10 Say They Can’t Live Without Radio

This might be one reason why radio listeners appear wedded to the medium. 41.7% of the respondents said they can’t live without the AM/FM radio stations in their area, while a further 49.3% said the stations are important but not life and death. Of those for whom the question was applicable, roughly half said they could not live without their laptop computer, while a similar proportion said they could not do without their smartphone (although this rose to about 60% among 18-34-year-olds).

Half Listen Most in the Car

Data from Jacob Media’s “Techsurvey 8? indicates that a majority of radio listeners say they do either all (27.7%) or most (25%) of their weekday AM/FM radio listening in a car. 18-34-year-olds are more likely than the average to say they do all their listening while in a car (35.7% vs. 27.7%), and men are also more likely than women to indicate this to be the case (29.3% vs. 26.5%).

The high proportion of radio listeners who tune into radio in a car, presenting somewhat of a captive audience, may be a reason why radio does a super job of holding its audience during commercial breaks. In fact, on average, radio delivers 93% of its lead-in audience during commercial breaks, according to a December 2011 study conducted by Arbitron, Media Monitors, and Coleman Insights.

Other Findings:

  • 38.2% of radio listeners say they listen to internet or streaming radio on at least a weekly basis.
  • The preferred way to listen to internet/streaming radio, among the American respondents who do so, is on a computer (75.9%), while 21.1% prefer doing so on a portable device such as a smartphone or tablet.
  • Slightly more than one-quarter of the American respondents who listen to internet or streaming radio say they listen to Pandora at least weekly.
  • Almost 1 in 10 respondents from the total sample indicate that the main vehicle they drive has a built-in entertainment/information system.

About the Data: The Jacobs Media survey was fielded from January 31 to February 15, 2012. 170 commercial stations from the US and Canada, plus a syndicated show and 2 internet stations, participated. Most respondents are members of station email databases. Some responses were gathered via the station’s website or social networking pages. No station contributed more than 4% to the sample. The total respondent sample is 57,358. As a web poll, it cannot replicate all radio listeners nor even each station’s audience.