Despite the hand-wringing about whether all young listeners have migrated to streaming music, many continue to regularly listen to broadcast radio.
A survey from Nielsen estimated that about 65.2 million people in the U.S. aged 18 to 34 years listen to traditional broadcast radio each week, usually as they’re commuting home from work. That’s roughly half of all people in that age group.
On average, they spend 11.5 hours a week with radio, with country music being the No. 1 genre, followed by contemporary pop and contemporary hits.
How do they compare with other age groups? Not surprisingly, older listeners tend to spend more time with radio. Generation X (aged 35 to 49 years) spends 14 hours a week on average listening to broadcast radio, but they tend to do more of their listening earlier in the day, between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. And Baby Boomers (aged 50 to 64 years) spend an average of 14.5 hours a week listening to radio, also between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. But whereas Gen X favors country music, Boomers spend more time listening to talk radio and news.
In total, radio continues to have an incredibly high penetration, reaching nine out of 10 people aged 12 years and up in the U.S. each week, according to Nielsen. That’s roughly 242 million people.