New Data on the AM/FM Radio Streaming Landscape
NIELSEN ANALYSIS OF PPM MARKETS
Nielsen reports that there are 4,800 streaming stations in the 45 PPM markets, 30% of which are encoded, meaning they are picked up by Nielsen's PPM measurement devices. Using this font of listener data from 1,500 stations across the U.S., Nielsen has provided new insights into the evolving AM/FM landscape in its latest report, AM/FM Radio Streaming Growth in PPM Markets.
OTA DOMINATES, BUT AM/FM STREAMS INCREASE SHARE OF LISTENING
While the vast majority of AM/FM listening continues to be over-the-air, new Nielsen data finds that station streams have reached 11.3% of total AM/FM listening in PPM markets. That number has doubled from the onset of the COVID epidemic in March'20, and is up +19% from the implementation of Nielsen's headphone adjustment in October'20. Looking at year-over-year analyses for May, AM/FM streams have grown +15% over 2021, and +64% over 2020.
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Nielsen finds wide disparity among PPM markets' streaming levels. Not only are these individual markets demographically different, but the number of encoded station streams vary as well, both of which contribute to the wide array of streaming levels. Half of the PPM markets (23) have AM/FM streaming shares under 10%, including Los Angeles (8.4%), Dallas (9.2%), Detroit (7.7%), and Phoenix (7.4%). On the higher end of the spectrum, 6 PPM markets have AM/FM streaming shares over 15%, with Riverside, CA topping the list at 19.3%.
AM/FM MEETS CONSUMER APPETITE FOR STREAMING SPOKEN WORD AUDIO
Streaming levels differ widely by radio format, with the top 15 streaming formats ranging from as low as 6% to as high as 31% of total listening. Spoken word formats display strong streaming listenership (Talk/Personality: 31%, News/Talk/Info: 19%, All Sports: 17%). In fact, Nielsen finds that 1/3 of all AM/FM streaming in PPM markets is to spoken word formats. The data shows that it's not only podcasts that are meeting consumers' growing appetite to stream spoken word audio, AM/FM stations are filling that need as well.
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The majority of listeners still consume AM/FM Radio content over-the-air, but over the past two years, many have been finding more ways to connect with their favorite local stations. Listeners are taking increasing advantage of all available platforms to access AM/FM content - including streaming via station websites, apps, and on smart speakers.
MLB Listeners are MVPs for Brands
RECENT DATA SHINES LIGHT ON MLB'S BIGGEST FANS: RADIO PLAY-BY-PLAY LISTENERS
Summer has officially begun, and MLB fans are back at it, tuning in and root-root-rooting for the home team. Loyal fans flock to their team’s flagship radio station to follow the action, and advertisers get the chance to reach some of the most engaged, and active audiences in all of baseball. Katz's latest analysis of MRI-Simmons data finds that consumers who listen to MLB broadcasts on the radio are true MVPs (Most Valuable Prospects) for sports marketers.
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MLB listeners are ultra-passionate and loyal to their teams, at levels far higher than the average MLB fan. 62% consider themselves “super fans” of baseball, +58% ahead of the average. 34% recently purchased clothing/apparel that features their favorite team, and 27% have visited a ballpark in the past year, both behaviors at levels well above the average fan.
MLB listeners have deep pockets and spending power. 66% of listeners are currently employed, with a median household income of over $106K. Their median household net worth, the aggregation of all their assets, is $376K, +8% above the MLB fan average. Play-by-play listeners are more likely to spend money to get in on the action themselves by participating in online sports gambling. They are +106% more likely to play fantasy baseball and +34% more likely to place a sports bet than the average MLB fan.
Play-by-Play is a home run for advertisers, delivering loyal, engaged audiences in local markets across the U.S. Not only are advertisers reaching some of the most desirable prospects in the country, they are linking themselves with locally embedded teams and gaining the opportunity to have their brand names mentioned alongside consumers' favorite brand: the home team.
Back-to-School to Bring Retail Sales Boost this Summer
As students all over the country are enjoying the start of their summer breaks, marketers are already looking ahead to kids going back-to-school. The back-to-school season is the second most important retail spending event of the year, and a new forecast from Mastercard SpendingPulse predicts that this year's sales will be even bigger than the last.
Focusing on in-store and online retail sales across all payment types during the period of mid-July through Labor Day, Mastercard Spendingpulse anticipates this back-to-school season to grow +7.5% over last year, and +18.3% over 2019. In-store sales will see an increase of +8.2% year-over-year, ahead of E-commerce growth at +4.3%. Compared to pre-pandemic, E-commerce is expected to increase by a whopping +89.3%, thanks in large part to shopping habits picked up and accelerated during the pandemic. Key sectors anticipated to grow this season are Electronics & Appliances (+5.9%), Apparel (+8.7%), and Department Stores (+13.0%).
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Local radio is a valuable asset for back-to-school retailers to reach consumers across demographics in the right markets at the right times relative to staggered back-to-school schedules. Radio delivers high reach among parents and is proven to impact consumer behavior, leading to greater than +20% lifts in online search activity and store traffic (RAB studies). And radio delivers an average $12 return for every dollar spent on ads, including larger returns for back-to-school retail growth sectors, including department stores and electronics retailers (Nielsen ROAS studies).
The Katz Local Vote: Your Guide to the 2022 Midterm Cycle
June is one of the busiest months this election cycle, with 18 states' primaries taking place and a dozen more political windows opening. As the cycle progresses, let Katz help you navigate the media landscape and reach local voters across the country with the relaunched Local Vote Interactive Guide.
In it you will find helpful political and media insights:
Governor, Senate, and U.S. House of Representatives races
State political leanings
Voter media usage by state, market, and party affiliation
And more to come!