How advertisers can benefit from the growth of Generation Audio: RDE’24

“Advertiser’s can benefit by using need-state data to create a more sophisticated and effective targeting approach for advertising campaigns,” said Mark Barber presenting Radiocentre UK’s recent audience-led research at Radio Days ’24 Sales Summit.

“A deeper understanding of listener need-states is the key to growth in commercial audio,” said Barber

Firstly, let’s look at the reasons audio is growing:

  • Easier access through the increased penetration of connected devices and non traditional audio devices since 2014. For example, smart speaker penetration in household is up 39% and smart phone adult users are up 48% (Ofcom Technology Tracker, 2022).
  •  Increased availability of audiences now that half of working adults work from home at least one day a week or more.
  • Total commercial audio adult listening hours are growing.

Now let’s look at the study conducted by Radiocentre, Generation Audio 2022, where new data sources were gathered using both qualitative and quantitative methods over the period of a week.

Key learnings show that audio satisfies the seven contemporary need-states that belong to the categories of personal, context, content and social. These are:

  • Keep me in the loop
  • Help me escape
  • Lift my mood
  • Broaden my horizons
  • Provide social currency
  • Amplify the moment

Keep me company is newly added since 2014, as audio provides companionship and is the human voice people seek when they are on their own.

Here is the profile of listeners who seek audio to keep me company.

Keep me company accounts for 26% of total audio listening time

Lift my mood accounts for 35% of total audio listening time.

While, Broaden my horizons accounts for 4% of total audio listening time.

A key learning Barber found is that context-driven need-states dominate 80% of commercial audio listening time.

He believes that live radio and on-demand audio play complementary roles for listeners. Live radio listening is driven by the need to feel energised, uplifted and more connected with specific social groups and to a wider world.

With podcasts, listening is led by a desire to learn new things and develop a deeper understanding of selected topics. While with on demand music services listening is centred around mood management.

Live radio has both the highest weekly audio reach and also has the highest share of listening time in comparison to podcasts and on demand music (Generation Audio, Radiocentre/ Differentology 2022).

In summary radio need-states learning shows:

  1. Greater accessibility and evolving audio need-states are fuelling growth in commercial audio audiences.
  2. Need-states demonstrate how linear radio and on-demand audio continue to play complementary roles for listeners
  3. Context-led occasions dominate listening

This knowledge will create a deeper understanding of reasons behind listener behaviour and more effective targeting approaches for advertising campaigns.

Find out more about Audio Need-States Navigator the launch pad for effective audio planning here.

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