Time shift: Americans start listening later during WFH (Edison Research)

Edison Research put out a fact blast from its subscription Share of Ear study, an ongoing quarterly examination of what Americans listen to. From the Q2 study of mid-May surveys, the company found that Americans (13+) have shifted their morning audio routines. Before COVID-19, 50% of the population started listening to any kind of audio by 7:15am. Since COVID-19, that audio start time for 50% of the population is 8:30.

The natural conclusion is that with much reduced commuting, especially in-car audio listening, people are rising later and listening later while working from home. Sounds like a lifestyl improvement on the face of it, but probably unsettling news for some parts of the audio ecosystem, especially broadcast radio.

Edison Research speculates that American’s might not return to past work/commute routines:

“This finding challenges our thinking about how those in the U.S. listen to audio during traditional drive times,” said Edison Research Director Laura Ivey.  “With many people staying at home or working from home during Q2, they did not engage with audio as early as they did pre-COVID. This data shows that if Americans continue current work patterns, audio strategies may need to be adjusted.”

Brad Hill