Radio’s Weekly Audience is Large… And Growing

June 27, 2017

This article is included in these additional categories:

African-American | Boomers & Older | Demographics & Audiences | Hispanic | Media & Entertainment | Radio | Youth & Gen X

Radio has remained largely immune to the disruption wrought by the internet on other traditional media types: recent estimates suggest that radio listening time has remained steady over the past 5 years, while AM/FM listeners themselves say they’re tuning in more. New data from Nielsen [download page] shows that radio’s audience is large, diverse, and growing.

Here are some key figures about radio’s weekly audience size in March of this year, derived from Nielsen’s report:

  • Total 12+ audience: 249,841,000 (up almost 2% from 245,054,000 two years earlier);
  • P 18-49 audience: 125,427,000 (up from 124,827,000);
  • P 25-54 audience: 117,873,000 (up from 117,420,000);
  • P 18-34 audience: 67,806,000 (up from 67,119,000);
  • Hispanic 12+ audience: 42,444,000 (up from 40,351,000); and
  • Black 12+ audience: 32,357,000 (up from 31,315,000).

Of those various demographic groups, it’s Hispanics showing the fastest growth, with the uptick in audience exceeding 5% over the past 2 years.

In fact, previous research from Nielsen has revealed that radio’s weekly reach is wider among Hispanics than among the other demographic groups profiled.

In terms of the distribution of radio’s audience, Nielsen finds that a majority (55%) are aged 45 and older, with the 45-54 bracket constituting the single largest group (19% share).

For more on the demographic composition of radio’s audience (including online radio), see MarketingCharts’ US Media Audience Demographics study, which contains a host of media sizing and demographics data.


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