Reports Audio

Audio audiences Steady change

Report by Mark Mulligan, Tatiana Cirisano and Annie Langston
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This report is the first preview of our new research vertical for Audio, to be formally launched later this year.

The 20,000 foot view: Podcasts reinvigorated the audio market, bringing with it the promise of a ‘Netflix moment’ for radio. Though podcast audience growth has not kept pace with industry interest and hype, podcasts have been at the centre of a boom in audio consumption that was accentuated by Covid lockdowns, and that is recalibrating post-pandemic.

Key Insights

  • Radio is the most widely listened to audio format, with        weekly active user (WAU) penetration, up from        2020 but down from        2021
  • Although only        of consumers listen to music streaming weekly, it is a clear second in the audio format landscape, and is two percentage points up from        2020
  • Podcast WAU penetration remains niche at just        though is up two points from        2020, and        2021 penetration peaked at        in Sweden
  • Audiobook penetration was        in        2021, which was one point up from        2020 but down slightly from        in        2021
  • The unique audio audience grew by one percentage point in 2021, however the combined growth of the sum total of all individual formats was       
  • Overlaps between audio formats is growing:        of Spotify listeners were podcast WAUs in        2021, up from        one year earlier
  •        of radio listeners were also music streaming WAUs (up from        in        2020)
  • Spotify has quickly established itself as the dominant podcast platform in terms of audience reach, with        of all podcast users
  • Spotify’s podcast reach is highest in Australia        the US        and Sweden       
  • BBC Sounds in the UK is the most widely used national broadcaster podcast app
  • Amazon, though, is the fastest growing platform, up from        in        2021 to        in        2021
  • Audio address diverse demographics: streaming and podcasts have most users aged under               and        respectively) while radio has the highest aged              

Companies and brands mentioned in this report :Amazon, Apple, Audible, BBC Sounds, Dolly Parton, Downcast, Google, India.Arie, Joni Mitchell, Luminary, Meta, Neil Young, Netflix, NPR, Spotify, Sveriges Radio, Wondery

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