The July Fourth weekend was an American blend of fireworks, barbeques and radio. A survey conducted this week by Katz Media finds nine of every ten people across the country listened to AM/FM radio during the long holiday weekend. The findings are on par with Nielsen’s new Audio Today report showing radio reaches 93% of U.S. adults each month.
AAA predicted 47.9 million people would travel 50 miles or more from home over the holiday weekend and that worked in radio’s favor, considering AM/FM remains the dominant in-car entertainment. Katz conducted a survey of over 1,000 people across the U.S. in the days after the July 4th weekend to find out about their holiday activities. It says 80% of daily radio listeners reported riding in a car – and 95% of those people listened to audio while doing so.
Radio was by far the leading audio choice, with seven in ten of those who rode in a car tuning into AM/FM (over-the-air, or via station streams/apps). That put radio ahead of pureplay streaming services and satellite radio – each used by a quarter of motorists – and podcasts, which 12% of drivers/passengers said they listened to. Even fewer listened to audiobooks, the survey shows.
“AM/FM radio marks advertisers' best bet to connect with holiday weekend revelers in the car,” says Katz in an update to ad buyers.
The survey also revealed what types of activities radio listeners were doing last weekend, with several prime opportunities to spend time with their local stations. It shows nearly half (49%) of daily radio listeners went to a barbeque, a third went to a fireworks show, and three in ten went to the beach.
Katz points out radio listeners also reported taking part in consumer activities, including shopping holiday sales online (16%) and in-store (11%), going to bars or restaurants (31%), and going to the movies (9%).
“AM/FM radio continues to be the best bet for businesses looking to reach active and engaged consumers over holiday weekends,” the rep firm says.
Two thirds of radio listening occurs outside the home -- most typically in the car according to the latest Nielsen numbers. The data also points to a continuing recovery from pandemic lows. “Seventy percent of heavy radio consumers are now spending an hour or more daily in vehicles, up 60% since spring 2020,” its new Audio Today report said.
The latest Nielsen consumer sentiment survey also revealed that radio listeners are bouncing back from pandemic lifestyle disruptions. Nielsen said 74% of radio listeners are willing to attend an outdoor event compared to 52% of the total population. And 69% of radio listeners said they are willing to return to an office setting versus 57% of the total population.