Bridge Ratings Industry Update - The Podcasting Outlook


For Immediate Release

Updated Wednesday August 8, 2006

Survey Update: Podcasting Use by 18-34 year olds Off Since Mid 2005

Based on interviews with radio listeners in ten national markets*, Bridge Ratings released today its updated analysis of podcast use. Phone interviews were conducted with members of the Bridge Ratings Podcast Panel to measure their use of podcasts over time. This is an on-going study of podcast users and not the general population.

The following chart displays responses from the sample and the question: "Have You Listened to a Podcast in the Last 30 Days?" The chart compares March and January 2006 responses to July 2005.

In general, the study indicates an overall reduction in the number of people who have listened to a podcast in the last 30 days. Interestingly, podcast use is up among older adults and down significantly among those 12-34 years of age.

Bridge Ratings continues to monitor podcast use over time. One way users are tracked is through the use of panels or groups of users who are interviewed over time in order to record consistent use patterns among identical samples.


When interviewed about this change in behavior, the following reasons were given for less podcast downloading by the 12-34 year olds who participated in this phase of the study:

1. Schedule related. Too busy.
2. Use of alternative entertainment media increased
3. Podcast content became uninteresting or boring - not cool anymore.
4. Podcast “fatigue”. Tired of seeking new content.

Bridge Ratings predictive analysis of podcast use trends has lowered its estimate based on this study and its responses at this moment in time. We have adjusted our end of 2006 estimate of the podcast universe from our original 9 million to 8.4 million people who will have listened to a podcast at any time. iTunes continues to be referrenced as the most often accessed portal for podcast downloads growing from July 2005's 63% to March 2006's 68%.

The study reveals that two different metrics define the podcast user universe: Weekly users and those that have ever downloaded and listened to a podcast.

The study shows that currently approximately 20% of users who have ever downloaded and listened to a podcast do so on a weekly basis. This group downloads an average of five podcasts per week and spends approximately three-and-a-half hours a month listening to the podcasts they download.

More interestly, on average less than 20% listen to their podcast downloads on an MP3 player or other digital device. This metric has not changed since our initial study of podcast behavior in July of 2005.

*Sample = 4,400 listeners 15+.

Sample erro = +/- 1.5%

*Markets including in this study: Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, St. Louis, Chicago, Boston, Washington, DC, Miami, Dallas, Atlanta.

Bridge Ratings is a ratings and research company based in Glendale, California. We are dedicated to providing on-going, immediate, reliable, useable and affordable audience measurement services for the radio industry. Our methodolgy is based on sound consumer research principles. We are in the business of tracking listeners - not listening. Because we are a true research company we offer flexibility


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