Forty-one percent of UK residents age 16+ have listened to a podcast in the last month, according to The Infinite Dial 2021 UK.
The Infinite Dial 2021 UK was conducted by Edison Research and sponsored by Bauer Media Group UK and Spotify.
The study surveyed 1,000 UK residents age 16+ on a variety of measures including online digital audio platforms, radio, social media, smart speakers, and more.
Findings from the study show several strengths in the audio space in the UK, including podcasts. Seventy-one percent of those age 16+ are familiar with podcasts, and 59% of those age 16+ have ever listened to a podcast.
The UK is on par with the U.S. regarding monthly podcast listening, as both countries have 41% of the 16+ population who have listened in the last month. The UK is slightly behind the U.S. regarding weekly podcast listening as 25% of the UK population age 16+ has listened to a podcast in the last week versus 29% of the U.S. population having listened in the last week. Weekly podcast listeners in the UK listen to an average of five podcast episodes per week.
Seventy-five percent of UK residents age 16+ listen to online audio each month, and 66% of UK residents age 16+ listen to online audio each week.
Facebook is the social media brand used most often, even among younger people. Fifty-five percent of social media users age 16+ in the UK use Facebook most often, followed by Instagram (8%), Snapchat (8%) and TikTok (7%). Among those age 16-34, the rank is the same but the proportions are different: 48% use Facebook most often followed by Instagram (14%), Snapchat (15%) and TikTok (10%)
One-quarter (25%) of the UK population age 16+ owns a smart speaker. Of those who own a smart speaker, 44% own one, 28% own two, and 28% own three or more of the devices.
According to Larry Rosin, President of Edison Research, it is exciting to analyze the findings from the UK Infinite Dial in the context of other countries. It is evident that the UK is on par regarding many measures of consumption, including monthly podcast listening, and actually outpaces the US in areas like weekly radio reach and weekly online audio reach.
Graham Bryce, Chief Operating Officer, Bauer Media Audio UK said, “The Infinite Dial research offers a unique insight into the consumption of digital media in the UK and highlights the growing opportunity audio provides commercial partners as a transparent and brand safe environment combined with data-led digital audio advertising at scale. We are now able to offer enhanced opportunities for advertisers which complement our leading radio business of 20 million weekly listeners in the UK, meaning we can offer the best of broadcast advertising and the advantages of digital targeting through our digital audio network Octave.”
James Cator, Spotify UK and Ireland, Head of Studios, said, “The first Infinite Dial report for the U.K. is a clear demonstration that consumers’ habits when it comes to audio consumption have changed rapidly, and are continuing to do so. As the UK’s most popular audio platform, Spotify is a key part of driving and delivering this change – as we’re seeing in podcast consumption in particular. You only have to look at how excited people have been to receive their Spotify Wrapped 2021 year-in-review to understand the enormous role that audio plays for people, and how creators soundtrack the world around us.”