Podcast Audience Numbers Catching Up To Traditional TV


As radio audiences ages 18-49 now outpace traditional television by twelve percent, another audio medium is now in line with TV. For advertisers targeting younger demographics, podcasts offer comparable reach to traditional TV.

Edison Research’s latest Infinite Dial study unveils podcasts have an 18-34 weekly reach nearly matching that of TV at 48%. Live and time-shifted TV audience share for that age range sits at 50%. Notably, podcasting monthly reach has hit 135 million Americans, which translates to 47% of those aged 12 and up. Even more striking, monthly reach among the 18-34, 18-49, and 25-54 age groups is now above 60%.

The growth is not limited to younger audiences; female listeners have particularly embraced podcasts, with their monthly reach surging by 15% from the previous year to 45%, closing the gap with male listeners at 48%. This trend is accompanied by a peak in podcast habituation, where 71% of monthly female audiences are tuning in weekly — the highest in a decade.

As pointed out by Cumulus Media Chief Insights Officer Pierre Bouvard in the Audio Active Blog, this increased engagement presents a solid case for agency Arnie Semsky’s “5% solution,” suggesting brands allocate a meaningful portion of digital ad budgets to podcasts to capitalize on this upward trajectory.

Despite the audience boom, podcasts currently account for only 1% of national ad spend, hinting at an untapped potential for impactful advertising.

For marketers and media agencies, the 2024 Infinite Dial study emphasizes the critical mass that podcasting now commands. These numbers suggest a potent opportunity for media plans, positioning podcasting as a core rather than an experimental component.


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