NPR reaches new highs with latest audience metrics

NPR has shared its latest broadcast and digital ratings, with the broadcaster reaching its highest results to date. In the Nielsen Audio Fall 2017 ratings, NPR had 37.7 million total weekly listeners for all programming on its stations.

The NPR monthly podcast audience also grew, reaching 20.4 million unique users and 103.1 million global unique streams and downloads. NPR has 42 active shows, and it credited the strong performance equally to both its long-standing hit podcasts and to its more recent creations.

The broadcaster is actively working to build links between its podcast and broadcast content. Ask Me Another, TED Radio Hour, Invisibilia, and It’s Been a Minute with Sam Sanders were all conceived to exist in both audio formats.

“These audience numbers show we have succeeded in strengthening our ability to support innovation across all of NPR’s programming and talent,” said Anya Grundmann, NPR’s vice president for programming and audience development. “We have developed the flexibility to capture a great story idea and connect it with the right platform and audience—whether it becomes a new segment for a news programs, a radio show, or a new podcast or all of these.”

NPR also reported an average audience of 41 million users per month for The NPR One app is also available on a growing number of hardware platforms, including smart speakers from Amazon, Google Home, and Apple.

“NPR has maintained the ratings gains picked up during the 2016 election while commercial news and talk radio has declined,” NPR President and CEO Jarl Mohn said. “People have a real desire for credible journalism, in-depth discussion, and compelling storytelling – and they are tuning to NPR. And now, through new and innovative technology like smart speakers that allow listeners to stream their favorite public radio stations we are able to reach more people in more ways than ever before.”

Anna Washenko