Internet Radio Listenership On The Rise…. Beating Out Local



Internet Radio Listeners On The Rise

The reports are in! More people are listening to internet radio than ever.  The latest reports from two different data research companies indicate that the listenership of internet radio has increased dramatically over the past year.  According to the latest report from Triton Digital Data, internet radio listenership is up 20.8% during the Monday through Sunday 6a-12midnight daypart when compared to the same data from a year ago.  In a separate report survey conducted by Edison Research, there are 67% more people listening to internet radio compared to the 23% increase of people listening to “Over-the-Air” AM/FM radio.  Edison Research‘s survey also highlighted some of the many reasons why people stated that they preferred listing to Streaming Live Radio instead of local “Over-the-Air” AM/FM radio (here are a few):
(1) More types of audio programming to choose from, (2) Clearer signal, (3) Player often tells you what song is playing, (4) They like to listen to live radio stations from outside their local area, (5) More convenient than listening on a regular radio, and (6) Ability to listen to a live event—sporting event or music event.
With these latest reports regarding the rise of internet radio listeners,  is it wise for programmers of terrestrial stations to start catering to their ever-growing online listeners?  Although there is no immediate PPM benefit that would translate into ratings,  perhaps “the world wide” branding and non traditional revenue that can be generated may be something to consider.   More and more terrestrial stations are already incorporating their own station  “Apps”  and internet contests to target the online listeners,  so it is safe to say that the trend has already started.    The question to ponder now is, will local listeners lose out if programming starts to cater to online listeners?  Hypothetically speaking, if a loyal local listener doesn't have access to register online for a contest to win front row tickets and a trip to see  ‘Beyonce' or ‘Drake'… does that listener miss out?  Or have we come to a point where we are “Cyber-Snooty” believing everyone has access to the internet?  Can there be a win/win?  We shall see…

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