As Americans continue working from home, staying put with their children and spouses, it remains a stressful and anxious time for everyone. Experts have predicted that media consumption would rise as more and more Americans stay in place.
How much can we expect media consumption to rise?
According to a recent Nielsen study, media consumption may rise by 60%. Intuitively, people will watch COVID-19 news on television, listen to radio or read late-breaking news online as they work.
The Nielsen study also shows that remote workers are listening to radio at the same rates as employees who were not working remotely — an astonishing 95%!
The latest Nielsen study shows that eight out of ten radio listeners are either listening to radio more or the same amount. What has changed is how and where Americans are listening to radio.
- 26% more are listening from home
- 19% more are listening on mobile devices
- 14% more are listening to podcasts
- 12% more are listening on their computers
- 10% more are listening on their smart speakers
Not unexpectedly, 32% report listening to radio less in their cars and trucks. The places and devices where people listen have changed because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the audience stays committed to radio. 28% of radio listeners report that they are listening to radio more during the COVID-19 outbreak.
Why radio? Why now?
Trust. Trust is at an all-time low for most national news media. The attitude is quite the opposite for radio — local radio (both AM and FM) has always been a trusted source in times of crisis.
Local Coverage. Radio listeners report that listening to their favorite radio host during the COVID-19 outbreak helps them know what’s important locally, helps them learn what local resources are available, helps them feel connected to their community, and feel less stressed and anxious. Local stations provide news and information, weather, traffic/highway/bridge closures, and now, during the COVID-19 pandemic, updates on how each local market is being affected. According to the Nielsen study released on March 26, 60% of listeners report that they greatly respect and trust their local radio stations to provide late-breaking updates on COVID-19 for their community.
Balance. Radio provides the ideal equilibrium between up-to-date COVID-19 news and distraction from the stress and anxiety of stay-at-home orders, and financial worries. Our favorite DJ or local news/talk personality is one of us — a trusted source of information but is in this with us.
The Power of Music. Studies show that humans are “hard-wired” to respond to music. Music stimulates more parts of the brain than any other human activity. Listening to our favorite songs comforts us and carries us back in time before COVID-19.
Radio. Still dependable — always evolving with technology
Commercial radio is 100 years old; only newspapers are older media. Yet as newspapers audiences have declined, 92% of Americans 18+ listen to radio every week. Radio outperforms television, digital, or mobile.
- Radio is unobtrusive, allowing listeners access while working remotely.
- Live breaks provide critical, late-breaking news about COVID-19 in listeners’ communities.
- Listeners have a wide variety of platforms for listening.
- Radio is there 24 hours a day, seven days a week
If you have questions about how to use radio outreach to deliver a message, contact us now. We’ll guide you through the process and ensure you get tangible, measurable results for your clients.