Nielsen

Radio remains one of America’s two ongoing favorite media sources, second only to television. And Nielsen’s Q1 2016 Comparable Metrics Report offers an in-depth look at how adult consumers access television, radio, TV-connected devices, smartphones and tablets and how much they use them. In all, consumers spend 13 hours and 1 minute with radio every week.

In the report’s measurement period of Dec. 28, 2015-March 27, 2016, Nielsen finds that the popularity of media choices dips dramatically after TV (No. 1, at 35 hours, 26 minutes per week) and radio, particularly as consumers enter the digital realm. After radio and TV are smartphones (app & web) with an average of 11 hours and 36 minutes per week. From there, media usage drops to 4 hours and below; in order: TV-connected devices, tablets (app and web), smartphone social networking, PC video, PC social networking, tablet social networking, smartphone streaming audio, smartphone video, tablet video, and tablet streaming audio.

After analyzing the just-released data, Stacey Lynn Schulman, executive VP Strategy of Analytics and Research for Katz Media Group, tells Inside Radio, “The latest Comparable Metrics Report from Nielsen is further proof that radio is not only strong, but still growing and not being cannibalized by newer streaming alternatives.” From her purview, “It’s all about stability, across demographics as well as dayparts. Radio remains a solid, reliable choice to deliver all audiences throughout the broadcast day.”

By the numbers, radio continues to reach 92.6% of all Americans each week among listeners 18+. Nielsen breaks that number down further, revealing that adult users tune in 5.15 days per week and 164 minutes per day, for a mammoth reach/cume of 222,922,000. That compares with cume for the same period a year earlier of 222,654,900, and 162 minutes of usage a week. By age group, radio is also enjoyed universally. All adults tune in an average of 5.1 out of 7 days per week; for Millennials, the figure is 5.0, for 35-49 it is 5.3, and for 50+ it is 5.2.

Among radio listeners, Hispanics rule the roost when the figures are broken down by demographic. According to the Comparable Metrics Report, the group also spends the most time with their smartphones. Among demographics, African-American audiences watch more TV that any other group, and Asian-Americans have the highest amount of advanced TV-connected device usage.

Other metrics revealed in this latest Comparable Metrics Report include a host of bullet points about media usage from Nielsen: TV accounts for 47% of the total average audience 18+; smartphones, tablets, PCs and TV-connected devices now combine for half of the average audience 18-34; 52% of those 18-49 use TV-connected devices; and more adults 35-49 use smartphones, tablets and PCs than those 18-34.

And looking at the increased use of streaming audio, Schulman, like many industry experts, no longer sees it as a significant threat for traditional broadcasters. She says, “I wouldn’t say that streaming audio is a concern as much as an opportunity for radio broadcasters to tap into as we continue to grow our influence throughout the consumer’s day.”

Download the full Nielsen report HERE.