Radio listeners continue to climb during pandemic

Mariam Cheik-Hussein
By Mariam Cheik-Hussein | 8 July 2020

Southern Cross Austereo continues to report a growing audience during the coronavirus pandemic, with figures given an extra boost by the return of live sports.

The radio network reported 8.9 million active live radio streams, up 52% year-on-year, for June, with a 9.7 million total listening hours, up 38% year-on-year. Meanwhile, catchup radio podcasts reported 3.2 million downloads at the end of June, up 49% year-on-year across SCA’s Hit and Triple M Network shows.

Radio has managed to grow its audience throughout the pandemic despite the drop in car travel which was a main way audiences tuned into the medium. Instead, smart speaker and mobile and tablet listening grew, by 58% and 48% year-on-year.

“Following a huge month for live streaming and radio podcast listening in May we expected to see huge growth when compared to the same time last year,” says SCA chief sales officer Brian Gallagher.

Gallagher says the return of the NRL has helped boost the radio network’s audience, with active live radio streams of Triple M NRL up 40% year-on-year and total listening hours, at 54,000, up 46% year-on-year.

“There is a huge demand for news and entertainment across all digital listening devices and in particular this period has shown that Triple M really does rock footy,” he says.

“The season restart has seen an increase of fans tuning into NRL games via the live radio stream and they are doing so more frequently and listening for longer.”

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