Radio Hosts Fail The Endorsement Trust Test While Podcasts Soar


    As misinformation and erosion of trust in the media continue to be two of the biggest modern issues for audiences and advertisers, a new study commissioned by Acast appears to have some very grim news for radio. The study, conducted by OnePulse, reveals that when it comes to endorsements, radio hosts finished dead last in every trust ranking, behind social media influencers, YouTubers, podcasters, and even cable TV personalities.

    When asked which medium generally gives endorsements for a product that makes the purchaser happy, radio lagged far behind the others at 55% – 15% off the next closest. That same percentage, 55%, say they have sought out an endorsement for a product by a radio personality. In the most dismal findings for radio, only 33% of those surveyed actively make time in their schedules to consume content from AM/FM.

    The findings weren’t all mortifying for audio, though, with podcasters finishing at the opposite end of the spectrum. OnePulse found podcasts are gaining significant trust among US consumers. 64% of podcast listeners intentionally carve out time to engage with podcast content.

    On the advertising side, the study concludes podcasts are a potent medium for product endorsements. The research showed that 75% of podcast listeners have turned to podcasters for product recommendations, a rate higher than that for social media creators (62%) and cable TV personalities (55%). Furthermore, 73% of those who acted on a podcast endorsement were satisfied with the quality of the product or service they received.

    Acast Director of Research and Insights Tommy Walters said, “Trust in US media has been deteriorating in recent years as a result of socio-political unrest and conflicting coverage by news outlets on the same events. As US consumers have lost confidence in traditional media, they have increasingly turned to podcasters as a source of truth.

    “During times of hardship and uncertainty – like the start of the pandemic and the beginning of the war in Ukraine – at Acast we have consistently seen audiences flock to podcasts for deep conversations and analysis over clickbait headlines. When it comes to product endorsements, we have also seen audiences be more trusting of podcaster recommendations than any other form of media.”


    1. Acast is an offshore podcast company dedicated to…you guessed it. Podcasting! This “study” is an attempt to sow dissatisfaction with radio. Nothing new though right? Radio is always under attack by some technology or service. What is new is that this never gets called out in the article written by a trusted trade magazine originally formed for…radio.

      • Darrell…..thanks for saying what I kinda suspected in this one. Did you know smoking is good for you ? Ask big tobacco. A gallon of vodka a day keeps your liver in great shape, according to a study from Stolichnaya. One of “media”‘s big problems is a failure to disclose the source of its information or why they might be saying what they say. Wow! Nothing against podcasting, but if a well-known personality is trying to sell me something I’m interested in – the source is less important. I did a study (asked my wife) who is the product endorser she trusts the most. I came in second. My two sons came in tied in first place.


    Please enter your comment!
    Please enter your name here