Issue 10. Some Interesting UK Podcast Stats – 2021

Sep 20, 2021

Ofcom, which is the UK’s broadcasting regulator have just released their Media Nations report which contains some really interesting podcast stats.

This report comes out each year and brings lots of insight into how folks are watching TV, listening to radio & podcasts and using streaming services.

Stats like this are wonderfully useful to podcasters as we can visualise how our audience are listening to our podcasts. We can then look at possibly changing a few things to meet their needs.

So without further ado… here’s some stats!

Reel to Reel

Top 5 Podcast access services used by 16 – 34 yr olds

  1. Spotify
  2. YouTube
  3. Apple Podcasts/iTunes
  4. BBC Sounds
  5. Amazon Prime Music

The big surprise for me was that YouTube is above Apple Podcasts. YouTube is obviously hugely popular for podcasts but I though Apple would be above them. Amazon Prime Music is quickly creeping up the list since it launched podcasts.

Top 5 Podcast access services used by 35 – 54 yr olds

  1. Spotify
  2. BBC Sounds
  3. Apple Podcasts/iTunes
  4. YouTube
  5. Amazon Prime Music

For older folk the apps are the same but in a slightly different order with the BBC Sounds app being more popular.

Top 5 Podcast access services used by 55+ age group

  1. BBC Sounds
  2. YouTube
  3. Apple Podcasts/iTunes
  4. Spotify
  5. Newspaper website

For folks over 55 years old BBC Sounds is top and interestingly newspaper websites appear in the list. In the UK a lot of newspapers host their own podcasts on their own websites.

Top 5 Podcast genres 16 – 34 yr olds

  1. Comedy
  2. Entertainment
  3. Discussion & Talk Shows
  4. News & Current Affairs
  5. Science & Technology

It’s always interesting to see what genres of podcasts different age groups prefer. Some say the younger generations don’t have a sense of humour but they prefer comedy podcasts! If you’re targeting this age group this shows what they like!

Top 5 Podcast genres 35 – 54 yr olds

  1. Entertainment
  2. Comedy
  3. Discussion & Talk Shows
  4. News & Current Affairs
  5. Society & Culture

Not too much difference for slightly older folk which shows we love being entertained by our podcasts.

Top 5 Podcast genres 55+ age group

  1. News & Current Affairs
  2. Entertainment
  3. Comedy
  4. Politics
  5. Society & Culture

Over 55’s still want to be entertained but they are also more likely to enjoy a podcast about politics and society & culture.

10% of people start a podcast using voice control compared to 58% who starting music.

Really interesting. We’re all happy to use Alexa and Siri to start our music but not our podcasts. Drill down in age groups & voice control is only used between 9% & 12% of the time.

Top 5 UK Smart speakers

Amazon Echo – 69%

Google Home/Nest – 25%

Don’t Know – 7%

Sonos – 7%

Bose – 6%

Amazon owns the smart speaker market in the UK by a long way but looking at the previous stat we don’t use them to start podcasts.

People using a smart speaker for podcast listening

18% -16 – 24 yr olds

19% – 25 – 34 yr olds

20% – 35 – 44 yr olds

25% – 45 – 54 yr olds

19% – 55 – 64 yr olds

So this stat looks at the age groups who use smart speakers to listen to podcasts so they probably start the podcast using a phone or tablet. Interesting to see figures only around 20% which could mean we listen to more podcasts when moving around.

That’s it. You can read the full report here which covers TV, Radio & Streaming.

What I’m listening To

One podcast I’m currently enjoying is To Live and Die in LA which tells the story of a group of people trying to solve the mystery of a young woman called Elaine Park. It’s a fascinating tour of how the group is trying to find evidence that a crime may have been committed. Give it a listen.

To Live and Die in LA

Hollywood, where dreams collide with harsh, sometimes deadly, realities. But crime in LA is unlike crime anywhere else in the world. It is often dramatic and sensational, with an element of celebrity and glamour that you won’t find in a small town murder mystery.’

Death in Ice Valley