Radio is still relevant, even during a pandemic

REGARDLESS of the global health or economic situation, it appears that Malaysians are still tuning in to their radios every now and then, showing an average of 20.6 million listeners in a week.

This was discovered by a recent Radio Audience Measurement research conducted by GfK during the first half of 2021 in partnership with Commercial Radio Malaysia (CRM).

The research also showed that listeners have their radios on for an average of 13 hours and 43 minutes weekly in Peninsular Malaysia alone.

Unlike most other music or news providers, radio-listening does not require or push for subscriptions, which might be one of the appeals that Malaysians are considering compared to other providers such as Spotify and the like.

Another factor that was taken into consideration was the increased number of vehicles on the road due to relaxed restrictions at the time of the survey, resulting to a 3% increase of listeners tuning in to their radios in vehicles.

Meanwhile, home-listening remains prevalent with 14 million listeners following their favourite radio station as they work, doing house chores, browse the internet or study.

There was also a double-digit increase in the number of student listeners, at home (11%) and in vehicles (10%), which was mainly attributed to the reopening of academic institutions at the time of the survey.

“Our study once again, reaffirms that radio, at a 94% reach, is a medium that continues to engage its audience day and night across a range of devices and platforms,” said CRM president Alex Poon.

Providing valuable insight that could benefit retailers and advertisers, the study found that the peak time slots for radio lies within the morning and evening, with breakfast (weekday 6am – 10 am) segments tuned in by over 15.3 million listeners, while evening drive segments (weekday 4pm – 8pm) are trail closely behind at 15 million listeners.

It was also revealed that each of the key weekday segments (i.e. 6am -10 am, 10am – 4pm , 4pm – 8pm and 8pm – 12midnight) registered growth in the audience size, with the 1pm – 4 pm segment achieving the highest growth.

According to the study, as the millennials are adapting to spending more time at home, nearly three in five listeners aged 25 to 39 years old tune in to radio at home, spending close to nine hours listening to the radio.

“In today’s digital era where technology continues to evolve rapidly and consumers alongside, becomes increasingly sophisticated, one of the success factors of radio is that it is able to adapt accordingly to meet the expectations and demands of its audience.” said GfK media measurement lead (Malaysia) June Pang. – May 20, 2021

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