Arbitron, Edison Media Research Release Survey Results
February 1, 2003
Arbitron, Edison Media
New York - Feb 25, 2003 - Arbitron and Edison Media Research have
revealed the findings of their latest Internet study Internet &
Multimedia 10: The Emerging Digital Consumer. This study found that
during the last three years, the number of Americans listening to
Internet audio broadcasting nearly tripled. The number of Americans who
have ever listened to radio stations over the Internet has surged from
11 percent in January 2000 to 34 percent in January 2003. Therefore,
Internet audio has become more of a regular habit for millions of
Satellite radio awareness was also surveyed and found that from January
2002 to January 2003, aided awareness for XM Satellite Radio increased
from 17 percent to 32 percent. Aided awareness for Sirius Satellite
Radio grew from 8 percent from January 2002 to 18 percent in January
2003. For XM and Sirius, the awareness of the two satellite radio
providers and interest in each service is much more pronounced among
men than with women. The survey also found that about 17 million
Americans say they are very interested in the concept of satellite
radio. There is a strong correlation between active users of Internet
audio and those who express an interest in satellite radio. While 9
percent of all Americans indicate they are very interested in satellite
radio, 15 percent of those who used Internet broadcasting in the last
month say they are very interested in satellite radio. Sixty-six
percent of those who are very interested in satellite radio have tried
Internet broadcasts. Therefore, it is clear that there is a significant
number of American consumers who actively seek unique and compelling
audio content regardless of its distribution method.
Arbitron and Edison Media Research offered these recommendations for
Internet radio after reviewing the survey results:
- Internet broadcasters should get serious about ad sales.
The growth in tuning to Internet broadcasts has been remarkable.
Most of this growth has been driven by consumers listening to audio
online and that is where Internet broadcasters should concentrate their
efforts for now.
- Companies pursuing subscription models should emphasize their
unique and compelling content as their primary value.
About 12 million Internet audio consumers would be willing to pay a
fee to listen to the online station they tune to most. However, the
evidence is clear that Internet audio consumers have greater interest
in subscribing for unique and compelling content vs. fewer commercials
or better audio quality.
- Internet broadcasters should try a mix of subscription and
Years of research and experience show that subscription and
advertising models do not need to be mutually exclusive.
- Don't build an Internet broadcasting business plan based on the
assumption that large numbers of radio listeners are dissatisfied.
Contrary to the opinion of a vocal minority, most Americans give
radio high marks for playing the kinds of music they like and for
providing a variety of programming.
- Satellite radio and Internet broadcasters should find ways to
partner with each other.
There is a strong correlation between active users of Internet audio
and those interested in satellite radio. Satellite radio has good
distribution in new cars, but limited ability to deliver in the
workplace. Most tuning to Internet audio occurs in offices with
broadband connections, but distribution is limited in cars.
- Internet broadcasting needs to develop hit programs to spur even
greater audience growth.
Internet broadcasting needs to develop a hit of its own that creates
a buzz and gets people talking.
- Manufacturers and distributors of new digital devices should use
Internet broadcasting to advertise their products.
People who tune to Internet broadcasting are more likely to be aware
of, show interest in and own new digital devices.
Since 1998, Arbitron and Edison Media Research have conducted 10
studies on the Internet and streaming media, one every six months. The
findings reported here are based on a January 2003 survey consisting of
2,005 telephone interviews with a randomly selected national sample of
Arbitron Fall 2002 radio survey diary keepers. To read more about the
survey results, go to www.arbitron.com.