Podcast Listeners Are Speeding Up In-Car Consumption.


The image of what people are doing while listening to a podcast may be in need of an update. A new survey from NuVoodoo finds that half (49%) of weekly podcast listeners say they regularly listen while driving. That is a bigger number than those who say they listen while at work (40%), doing household chores (36%) or taking public transportation (25%).


The survey finds that podcast listening while driving is not the highest among the youngest listeners, either. Instead, it is the now mostly thirtysomething Millennials that listen in the car at the highest rate – 55% said they listen while driving – followed by Gen X at 48%. NuVoodoo says Gen Zs were the least likely of the three age groups to listen to podcasts while driving, although a still-significant 37% said they did.


“Among the weekly podcast universe, driving, exercising, and work top the list of companion podcast listening activities,” said NuVoodoo cofounder Leigh Jacobs. “Millennials over-index in weekly users who drive, exercise or work while listening to podcasts. They’re nearly 50% more likely than Gen Z podcast listeners to listen while they’re behind the wheel and 45% more likely than Gen X listeners to listen to podcasts while working,” Jacobs said in a video detailing the findings that Gen Xers are least likely to multitask while listening to podcasts with 37% of them saying they do nothing while listening to a podcast.


The data also shows that weekly podcast listeners are more likely to drive a connected car than the overall survey sample, and they are more likely to link their phone to the dashboard by either a cord or Bluetooth connection.


Overall, NuVoodoo says its survey data shows 46% of people now listen to podcasts on a weekly basis. Millennials have the highest rate at 54%, followed by Gen Zs at 45% and Gen Xers at 34%.


“While that is smaller than the weekly audience for either radio or digital streaming platforms, nearly half in our total sample are now using podcasts on a weekly basis,” said Jacobs. “The weekly podcast audience over-indexes with the amount of time they spend with many forms of audio entertainment, but especially when it comes to podcasts. Overall, better than three-quarters (77%) of weekly podcast listeners listen for an hour or more each week – nearly doubling the same level of podcast listening in the overall sample. Weekly podcast listeners also over-index in the time spent with both radio and DSPs.”


Yet it seems music has more appeal. NuVoodoo points out that digital streaming providers like Spotify and Pandora still have a bigger reach, with three-quarters (74%) of those surveyed reporting they use streaming music services on a weekly basis.


For those who do listen to podcasts on a weekly basis, NuVoodoo’s survey finds more than eight in ten people listen to at least two podcasts each week. And four in ten people listen to four or more. Once again, Millennials lead with the biggest number (46%) reporting they listen to four or more podcasts each week.


“More than half (54%) of weekly podcast listeners consume podcasts three or more days each week,” noted Jacobs. And he said 21% listen to podcasts five or more days.


NuVoodoo says podcasts should be a natural line extension for radio stations. And while the biggest challenge for radio and any podcast producer remains getting noticed, it says radio stations have a “tremendous advantage” to promote their shows with their broadcast signal. It found evidence of that when it asked people how they discovered new shows and 45% of Millennial podcast listeners cited NPR.


The NuVoodoo research is based on interviews of 3,298 survey respondents aged 14 to 54 including 1,498 who said they listen to podcasts each week.

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