Studies by American Media Services and Edison Media Research both indicate a growing Internet Radio audience. Earlier this week Edison Media released a few facts from its updated Infinite Dial Study, done jointly with Arbitron. The new info reveals that Internet radio’s US weekly audience is 42 million and that figure represents 17% of Americans 12+ and has doubled since 2005. Kurt Hanson’s RAIN: Radio and Internet Newsletter did a nice job of updating a chart from last year’s Infinite Dial Study to reflect this growth. The full presentation will be released on April 16th and presented by Tom Webster of Edison Media Research at the RAIN Summit on April 20th.
Another new study, this one by American Media Services, reveals that 27% of Americans have listened to an “Internet only” radio station – that is, one that is not also broadcast over the air. This includes nearly half (47 percent) of young adults 18-24 and about a third (34 percent) of those under the age of 50. American Media Services’ latest survey also shows that 73% of Americans are listening to broadcast radio as much as they had five years ago. It’s unclear why the survey chose to identify online listening as only listening to Internet only stations, disregarding listening to Internet radio stations streamed by broadcasters.
Those surveyed indicated a preference for listening to Internet radio stations that are “free” (ad supported), however, almost a quarter responded that they were willing to pay a small monthly fee (less than $8) for access to commercial free programming.
The survey also identifies increasing demand for wireless and mobile access to Internet radio. 46% of those surveyed said they would like to have access to the internet in their cars, and 74% said they would listen to Internet radio more often if they had that access.
The study provides research evidence to support the idea that increased mobility is the big growth opportunity for Internet radio and that in car listening is a huge untapped frontier for growing online listening.
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