UK online radio grew from 8.1 million weekly listeners in November to 9.4 million through April and May, according to Rajar‘s latest questionable poll (pdf). The number who have ever listened grew from 12 million to 14.5 million.
Listen-again radio services got 1.8 million listeners per week though, in a typical injection of confidence, Rajar said three-quarters of them listened to no less radio as a result. Indeed, half of them are listening to shows they wouldn’t otherwise have heard
Podcasts got 3.7 million weekly listeners (up from 1.87 million), with listeners spending just over an hour a week listening. Surprising as it may seem for a paradigm that has failed to make an impact with mainstream audiences, four fifths of folk subscribe to feeds rather than play direct from web pages.
And, funnily enough, Rajar also credits podcasts with “a marginally positive effect on live radio listening” – 15 percent of respondents listen to more since discovering podcasts and 53 percent have discovered new shows.
Whilst the study, a follow-up to February’s debut survey on the topic, was conducted by Ipsos Mori, it used a sample of just 863 people – most of whom were already Rajar measurement respondents and who had already indicated they are online radio converts. As it’s not stated, we also assume the “podcasts” studied were those produced only by radio organisations…
In other words, the study was somewhat skewed and is an attempt by Rajar to show it’s modernising, despite having ruled out electronic data gathering methods in favour of sticking with the humble diary entry until 2009.
(Photo: Dan Taylor, some rights reserved)