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Young Americans not too keen on radio and albums either

By | Published on Thursday 14 September 2017

Music Business Association

The retailer-focused Music Business Association in the US has published a new report called ‘Music Consumption: The Overall Landscape 2017’. Put together by AudienceNet, the study is basically the American version of the same research group’s previously reportedUK-based ‘Audiomonitor’ report.

Both versions throw up some similar findings, particularly on the listening habits of young people. As with the UK report, the US version shows that 16-24 year olds are listening to less radio and fewer albums than older generations.

However, they are listening to radio slightly more than in the UK (17% versus 10%), so maybe that’s something to be cheerful about. Radio is doing better than CDs anyway, which get just 2% of young folk’s listening hours – much less than the national average of 19%.

Streaming services – and their playlists – are increasingly key for this demographic. Unlike the UK results, the study found that YouTube takes up the highest amount of listening time among young people – 37% versus Spotify’s 35%. YouTube also has a far higher reach than the other digital services, as it does in the UK.

Overall, 47% of young people said that they use on-demand streaming to access music, compared to a 26% national average. There were also stats on the popularity of different services among the US population as a whole. YouTube came out top, with 49%, followed by Pandora at 24% and Spotify at 21%. Facebook meanwhile jumped from 7% last year to 19% in this year’s report, matching the reach of CDs and overtaking iTunes, which sits at 15%, making it level with Amazon Prime Music.

“This study confirms that music consumption is just as diverse as the people doing the listening, with each age group embracing different services in their own way”, says David Lewis, CEO of AudienceNet. “Streaming behaviour is also evolving, with Spotify gaining ground and platform-created playlists becoming a major listening source. We look forward to seeing how these trends continue to evolve as these services mature”.