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Nielsen: NFL On Radio Reaches Highly Desirable Consumers.


Reaching highly educated, upper income consumers is becoming harder for advertisers to do. Blame COVID, work-from-home and a plethora of entertainment options for those who can afford subscription-based services. While radio has always over-delivered higher socioeconomic consumers because full-time workers need to commute and commuters are great radio listeners, audiences for NFL play-by-play on the radio exhibit an even stronger qualitative profile.


A Nielsen analysis of all 30 NFL teams during the 2022-2023 season measured by PPM demonstrates the power of the NFL in not only drawing massive audiences but also in attracting some of the most desirable consumers. “There are dozens of streaming services playing Taylor Swift, but only one flagship station broadcasting the local NFL team,” says Nielsen Senior VP/Sales Director John Snyder.


Snyder looked at the PPM panelists who tune-in into the NFL on radio and compared them to the average radio listeners in the same market. On average, NFL listeners are 25% more likely to have a household income over $75,000 and 25% more likely to have a college degree or higher education.


The analysis compares PPM meter holders listening to the games during the 2022-2023 season vs. the general market listening in the home market during the same time period (September -Holiday book average).


It shows that, on average, two-thirds (66%) of consumers who tune to the NFL on radio have a household income of $75,000 or more compared to just over half (53%) of the radio audience overall. Similarly, 45% of the 30-team average audience has a college degree or higher education, versus 36% of the radio audience overall. NFL on radio audiences are 25% more likely to earn a household income of $75,000 or greater and 25% more likely to hold a college degree or higher.


Those are the 30-team averages. Your mileage may vary.


The Miami Dolphins radio audience ranks highest in the NFL for household income of $75,000 or higher. Dolphins on radio listeners are 75% more likely than Miami radio listeners overall to earn a household income of $75,000 or higher. Houston Texans radio audiences came in second and are 67% more likely than the Houston radio average to fall into this income bracket.


The Arizona Cardinals radio audience came out on top for the highest level of education obtained. Cardinals radio audiences are 97% more likely to have a college degree or higher compared to the total Phoenix radio audience. Here again the Houston Texans came in second – its radio audience is 79% more likely to have obtained this level of education than the Houston radio market overall.


This analysis is part of a series looking at NFL on radio audiences conducted by Nielsen for Inside Radio.


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