The image of what people do while listening to a podcast may need updating. A new survey from NuVoodoo reveals that half (49%) of weekly podcast listeners say they regularly listen while driving. This is a larger number than those who say they listen at work (40%), while doing household chores (36%) or while taking public transport (25%).
Listening to podcasts while driving is also not highest among younger listeners, the survey finds. Instead, millennials, now mostly in their 30s, listen the most in the car – 55% said they listen while driving – followed by Gen Xers at 48%. NuVoodoo says Gen Zers were the least likely of the three age groups to listen to podcasts while driving, although a still significant 37% said they had.
“Among the weekly podcast universe, driving, exercise, and work top the list of complementary podcast listening activities,” said NuVoodoo co-founder Leigh Jacobs. “Millennials are over-indexing weekly users who drive, exercise or work while listening to podcasts. They are nearly 50% more likely than Gen Z listeners to podcasts to listen while driving and 45% more likely than Gen X listeners to listen to podcasts while working,” said said Jacobs on a video detailing the results that Gen Xers are the least included to multitask while listening to podcasts with 37% of them saying they do nothing while listening to a podcast.
The data also shows that weekly podcast listeners are more likely to drive a connected car than the overall survey sample, and they are more likely to tether their phone to the dashboard via cable or Bluetooth connection.
Overall, NuVoodoo says its survey data shows that 46% of people now listen to podcasts on a weekly basis. Millennials have the highest rate at 54%, followed by Gen Z at 45% and Gen X at 34%.
“While this is lower than the weekly audience of radio or digital broadcast platforms, nearly half of our total sample now uses podcasts on a weekly basis,” Jacobs said. “Weekly podcast audiences over-index with the time they spend with many forms of audio entertainment, but especially when it comes to podcasts. Overall, more than three-quarters (77%) of weekly listeners podcast listeners listen for an hour or more each week, nearly doubling the same level of podcast listening in the overall sample.Weekly podcast listeners also over-index time spent with both radio and DSPs.
Still, it seems music has more appeal. NuVoodoo points out that digital streaming providers like Spotify and Pandora still have greater reach, with three-quarters (74%) of respondents saying they use streaming music services on a weekly basis.
For those who listen to podcasts weekly, NuVoodoo’s survey reveals that more than eight in ten listen to at least two podcasts weekly. And four out of ten listen to four or more. Once again, millennials lead with the highest number (46%) reporting listening to four or more podcasts each week.
“More than half (54%) of weekly podcast listeners consume podcasts three or more days a week,” Jacobs noted. And he said 21% listen to podcasts five or more days.
NuVoodoo says podcasts should be a natural line extension for radio stations. And while the biggest challenge for radio and any podcast producer is getting noticed, it’s said that radio stations have a “huge advantage” in promoting their shows with their broadcast signal. He found proof of this when he asked people how they discovered new shows and 45% of millennial podcast listeners cited NPR.
NuVoodoo research is based on an interview with 3,298 survey respondents between the ages of 14 and 54, including 1,498 who said they listen to podcasts weekly.