From where I sit On The Kowch, I’d be losing a lot of sleep at night if I was still the Program Director at Newstalk 1010 in Toronto, after listening to the Edison Research and Triton webinar about the penetration of online digital audio in Canada. The inaugural Infinite Dial Canada 2018 Study explores the online platforms and technologies that Canadians are using. Edison Research conducted a national telephone (cell phone and landline) survey of 1,000 Canadians aged 18 and older in English and French at the beginning of this year.
The scariest findings dealt with how many people don’t even own a radio at home.
Are you ready? The Infinite Dial Canada 2018 Study shows 51% of 18-34 year-olds don’t own a radio at home. That’s one in two millennials who don’t have either an AM or FM radio where they live. How is that not bad news for a PD who depends on 18-34 listeners for job security, never mind their ratings bonus?
Talk radio attracts older listeners. 30% of Adults 35-54 and 11% of Adults 35+ don’t own a radio in their house. Those are the key talk radio demos. For the record, this old man has a radio in the bedroom and in the kitchen. But guess what, now that my wife and I are both retired, the radios just gather dust because we hardly listen to the radio at home.
But, maybe the silver lining in the Infinite Dial Canada 2018 Study can be found in the digital craze sweeping the nation. 76% of all Canadians have a smart phone – I just upgraded to iPhone 8+ for my birthday. I wake up in the morning and check my weather app, then I browse social media and click on audio links from different radio stations including Newstalk 1010 to listen to highlights of their programming – Radio on Demand lets me hear my favourite programming when I want and not have to wake up early to hear Moore In The Morning.
So maybe those 30% of Millennials are listening to AM/FM radio after all – ONLINE – via their smart phones. Check out the graph below. I think I’m part of the 41% of adults 55+ who listen to the radio online.
Here are more Infinite Dial Canada 2018 Study slides
The latest competition to radio are podcasts. This year has seen an explosion in the popularity of podcasts in Canada according to the Infinite Dial Canada 2018 Study. Here are some more Edison Research slides about podcasting listening.
The slide below is interesting because it shows that not everyone listens to the entire podcast. It’s why, when I coach podcasters, I tell them to stay focused and use their best material at the beginning because listeners may not stick around to the end of their podcast.
Now here is something I never thought of doing while listening to a podcast – increase the speed so that it doesn’t take as long to listen to the entire podcast. 18% of Americans tend to do this compared to only 9% of Canadian podcast listeners.
Now we’ve all seen the TV commercials for Smart Speakers. But only 8% of Canadians own a smart speaker compared to 17% in the U.S. This is because smart speakers have been available in the U.S. longer than in Canada. 63% of Canadians who own a Smart Speaker have Google Home compared to 30% who use Amazon’s Alexa.From where I sit On The Kowch, the Infinite Dial Canada 2018 Study is a bit overwhelming. It reveals how people with buds in their ears walking, cycling, driving, using public transportation or sitting in cafes have become a generation of digital zombies!