TALK Radio TSL: Higher Among Smartphoners!
August 26, 2013
Our consistent theme recently in these columns has been the consumer’s rapid transition to a smartphone-centered lifestyle, and what it means for Radio.
What we have found tells us two essential facts about the audience in 2013.Â
One, they are increasingly plugging into the world through their “phones.”Â Socially.Â Commercially.Â As daily-functioning partner.Â And for audio/video content.
Two, it’s actually earlier than we think for Radio.Â Radio listening itself via smartphones continues to increase, but not yet close to traditional terrestrial radios.Â More important, we do not see, yet, any significant loss in Radio TSL or station attachment among radio listeners who have smartphones.Â Some sampling of other online/app audio, but no rush to the exits.Â
Last week, we compared smartphoners to non-smartphoners on Music Radio TSL.Â Headline: no meaningful difference between these two groups in their perceived listening levels.Â So this week, let’s look at Talk TSL.Â (We intentionally defined “talk” broadly, not as N/T stations alone, but as “talk shows,” to include sports talk and a great many morning shows.) Can we detect any patterns? Do smartphone owners listen to just as much Talk Radio as folks without smartphones?Â
Well, in factâ€¦Â Smartphoners are actually more likely than non-Smartphoners to listen to “talk shows.”Â On the above chart, you can see that, as of now, 40% of smartphone owners say they don’t listen to Talk, while 60% do.Â Meanwhile, among those without smartphones, the split is a much closer 48:52.Â Clearly, smartphones did not cause that difference; this is a case of correlation.Â The kind of listener who owns a smartphone is simply more likely to be the kind who enjoys Talk content.
What this means to you
For talk stations and shows, that smartphone base that skews 60:40 to talk cumers presents both a unique opportunity and a unique challenge.Â
An opportunity to target advertising and promotion right at this audience.Â By using those very smartphones as your #1 advertising medium. Making Â the device your click-now, perfect point-of-purchase-advertising, sales agent. Â Thus, a moment of opportunity to define and control the space.Â An opportunity to change the future.Â
The challenge is essentially the flip side:Â Look, we know the wave of digital competition is coming to us.Â But radio stations still have time to meet it, and hold Â the beaches.Â The window, however, is now.Â Uh-oh is too late. If we want to dominate smartphone audio tomorrow, we should start today.Â By dominating on-phone-screen advertising / promotion / messaging, now and forever into the future.