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Why Choose Radio?


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A brief insight into radio and podcasting as a platform from a brand perspective.

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Why Choose Radio?

  1. 1. Why Choose Radio? An insight into Internet radio, mobile radio and podcasting.
  2. 2. Introduction. Online radio and podcasting are two of the biggest growth areas in media consumption with audience figures rapidly growing. It’s a curious area with podcasting being largely dominated by iTunes; online radio being led by the fast growing Pandora, Last FM and Spotify. On the production side many of the traditional big broadcasters, aside from the BBC, who have a large presence in both online radio and podcasting, the area has been largely untapped. Commerical radio stations in particular have generally failed to make any great impact online. This is of course an ever changing digital landscape and many are making efforts to improve perfor- mance in this area. Despite this, it is an area that has yet to reach maturity as the figures for podcasting and online radio are only going up; and with the prospect of much easier access to listening via mobile devices looming it is a very interesting area. There are numerous apps now for listening to internet radio via smartphones, and podcasts are obviously a key format for mobile handsets and mp3 players. Any online audio offerings now have to take the demands of the mobile market very seriously as the prolifera- tion of these devices continues to escalate. Analogue radio unlike television has been very resilient in the face of the growth of new media with 46 million adults listening every week in the UK; and the main reason for this is that it’s a complementary medium. People tend to listen to the radio alongside doing other things, people listen to the radio at home at work and perhaps most importantly in this context, alongside surfing the internet. Radio has been shown to offer something very similar to the internet in that it enables a connection with people’s social community. The Internet is often used as a means for people to operate within their immediate so- cial network, whilst radio is commonly used to connect to the wider social network of a local community or shared interest group (in 2008 34 million people in the UK tuned in to a local radio show every week). In fact research has shown that radio listening combined with online use gives a relief from isolation when at home and specifically radio creates a more relaxed frame of mind when listening and surfing. Personalised music offerings such as Pandora, Last Fm and Spotify are rapidly growing in size but all are yet to totally clarify their long-term business model. Social media and radio have a lot in common and whilst social media has become massively popular online, yet online radio is still yet to really see massive audiences. This is despite research indicating that a high number of internet users are listening to radio whilst surfing at any one time. The next few years are going to be very interesting to see how things develop with online radio and it’s little brother podcasts. We for one have our eyes wide open and want to be a big part of the future of both these areas. Here at Delicious Digital we are passionate about radio and new media; this document offers a little of our insight into the field of internet radio and podcasting. There’s lots of interesting facts and figures floating around and we’ve compiled a few of them for you. We are firm believers in online and mobile ra- dio as a platform and that podcasting is here to stay; both formats are great ways to communicate with an audience and that both areas have a lot of room for bigger and better production. 1
  3. 3. Online Radio. A lot of people are listening to radio online.. 17.4 million UK adults have listened to online radio, 15 million of these are listening live; this is up 500,000 from May to December 2009. Radio online is mostly listened to by younger men.. There is a slight male skew with 57% of internet listeners being men and there is a broad split across generations, with the younger generation being the largest with 47% aged between 15-34. Internet radio listeners are also more likely to be affluent, educated and employed. Online radio is mostly listened to at home.. 89% of internet radio listening takes place at home, while 21% listen at work and 6% listen elsewhere. ‘Personlised Online Radio’ is the fastest rising subsector of online radio.. Some 4.5 million people in the UK had tuned in to personalised online radio services such as Spotify and Last FM by December 09, up from 3.9 million in May and 2.9 million in October last year. There are more radio stations online than anywhere else.. source: 10/12/08, RAJAR 10/12/09, RadioCentre April 2008, Arbitron and Edison Media Research’s The Infinite Dial 2009 2
  4. 4. Online Radio. Commercial Radio stations are all staking a claim... 93% of Commercial Radio stations stream their audio online, and 57% have a listen again service in some shape or form. People like to listen and surf.. Internet radio is the soundtrack to online activity, with 47% reporting listening while researching products on a website. Advertising on online radio is a growth area.. “Online shows and podcasts have loyal audiences who pay attention to advertisers who support the shows they regularly listen to or watch, (Our) studies showed that 69 percent of audience members have a more favorable view of in-show advertisers, which means a tremendous amount of goodwill goes to advertisers of online shows when show selection is intentional and advertising and ad formats are inte- grated into show formats.” Velvet Beard, Podtrac’s vice president of products. BIA/Kelsey calculates the industry’s online revenue will be up 12% to $382 million in the USA this year, with a more robust 20% increase in the coming year. “Radio’s online assets have proven to positively impact consumer behavior,” said Rick Ducey, chief strategy officer, BIA/Kelsey. “Now radio has to extend this ability to impact consumers into its advertising efforts. Once the cross-platform model is fully em- braced by sales teams, and advertisers learn how to effectively plan and buy radio’s digital and air as- sets, the revenue will follow.” source: 10/12/08, RAJAR 10/12/09, RadioCentre April 2008, Arbitron and Edison Media Research’s The Infinite Dial 2009 / Other Line of Enquiry 2008 3
  5. 5. Online Radio. The BBC is a major player in online radio... 4
  6. 6. Podcasts. Podcasting is very popular in the UK... 8.1 million people have downloaded a podcast (up from 7.8 million in May ’09), while 4.4 million say they listen to podcasts at least once a week (up from 4.2 million in May ‘09, 4.1 million in October ’08 and 3.7 million in May ‘08). The typical podcast user subscribes to 5.9 podcasts per week (up from 5.2 podcasts in May ’09) and spent about an hour listening to them in the previous week. They peg the podcast audience at 9% of Internet users now, and are predicting the audience to nearly double, to 17%, within five years. iTunes is still dominating the podcast market... iTunes continues to be the software of choice, used by 75% of podcast users to subscribe to podcasts, while 18% simply download directly from a website via their browser. Podcasts have a good degree of mobility.. 79% listen to podcasts on their home computer and 66% listen via a portable audio/mp3 player; and this hasn’t changed in the last 12 months. 83% of podcasts users listen to podcasts that are more than a week old. Podcast listening occurs throughout the day, with an evening peak when 37% of podcast users press the play button (weekdays). Podcasts are mostly listened to be younger men.. Podcast users are more likely to be men (65% of users) and in the 15-34s age break (54% ofusers). Podcasting and radio go hand in hand... Podcasting appears to have a positive effect on radio listening with 33% saying that they now listen to radio programmes to which they did not listen previously. 78% of podcast users said that listening to podcasts had no negative impact on their live radio listening habits. Advertising doesn’t necessarily turn off podcast users.. 59% of respondents said they would be interested in downloading podcasts containing advertising if they were free, while only 33% responded positively to the idea of podcasts without adverts that had to be paid for. Commercial radio stations are producing a lot of podcasts.. 57%of Commercial Radio stations produce podcasts or non-live audio. Source: RAJAR 10/12/09 / MORI (UK) May 09 / Radiocentre April 2008 5
  7. 7. Podcasts. The BBC is very successful in the podcasting market.. 6
  8. 8. Mobile. Radio listening via mobile phone is growing.. Radio listening via mobile phone continues to grow steadily among adults aged 15+ with Q4, 2009 posting an increase of 7.1% from 6.2 million in Q4, 2008 to 6.7 million in Q4, 2009, though this is down slightly from 6.9 million in Q3, 2009. There are some interesting demographic trends.. The 15 to 24-year-old demographic shows a decrease of 2.1% year on year, but nearly 30% of those in this age group continue to claim they have listened to the radio in this way; while 13.6% say they listen at least once a week and 2.9% say they listen every day. However, the 25+ demographic shows a steady increase of 13% year on year, up from 8.7% in Q4, 2008 to 9.7% in Q4, 2009. The BBC again have a big stake in the mobile radio market.. According to M:Metrics, the BBC mobile site is currently the second most popular UK destination on the mobile internet, attracting more than six million visitors a month. Pandora has been very succesful in the mobile market.. Of the 65,000 people who register for a Pandora account each day, 45,000 do so on mobile phones, said Tim Westergren, Pandora’s founder. Source; But it turns out that Pandora’s 11 million registered mobile listeners (compared to the 35 million on the Web) click on mobile ads about twice as often as they do on Web ads. Spotify’s premium subscritption service is allegedly picking up pace... As of January this year Spotify are alleged to have 250,000 premium subscribers who have access to their mobile service. Source: DagenNyeter 29.1.10 More and more people are listening to music via mobile.. A new study by Forrester Research shows that 10% of mobile phone users use their device to listen to music, up from 5% a year ago. According to a summary of the study by Mediaweek, texting and email- ing pictures were also up, while watching TV or videos was flat, and checking the stock market was down (I wonder why!) Specifically, it is the under 30 year olds (18 to 29) that are leading the way, 22% of them use their phones to listen to music while only 7% of the older demographic do the same. It’s all good for Internet radio, as more and more people find their way to their favorite online station via their connected mobile device. - 14.8.09 Sources: RAJAR Q4 2009 / M:Metrics / NY TImes 9.09 / 7
  9. 9. Mobile. Clear Channel are taking mobile radio very seriously.. “It’s [mobile radio is} extremely meaningful ,” Clear Channel Executive Vice President Evan Harrison says. About a year after the No. 1 radio company introduced its iHeartRadio app for iPhones, phone users account for 10% of its digital audience. “We expect to at least double that number” in 2010, he says. “That’s a modest goal.” The company attracts about 28 million unique visitors a month, up 30% vs. last year. So are lots of advertisers... While many marketers have been reluctant to embrace a channel that lacks proven use cases, an in- creasing number have begun to realize the “additive effect” of mobile on their other advertising and marketing efforts. As smartphones proliferate and marketers move beyond experimentation, budgets will steadily increase. eMarketer predicts that spending on mobile advertising will gain momentum over the next five years, reaching $1.56 billion by 2013. eMarketer - December 08, 2009 8