Radio Listens Up As Listeners Stay Home
With more people at home more often, one would expect radio stations to be struggling. After all, many listeners of radio stations did so primarily during commutes.
However, the opposite is happening. While less people are in their cars to listen to their radio, online listening has been on the rise. According to BBC News, the number of people who listen to radio stations on the stations' websites in late March was up between 15 and 20 percent from the previous week, while Spotify streams were down 8%.
One major difference between listening to music on the radio and streaming music is the selection of songs. When listening on a radio station, listeners hear whatever song the station plays, whereas streaming music allows listeners to choose the songs themselves.
Why this is the case is unclear. One possible reason is that more people are enjoying pressing play on a radio station's live stream rather than being their own personal DJ. Perhaps people are more in the mood of listening to music by genre instead of song; for example, a listener may know they want to listen to Hot AC music, but not which specific songs.
Additionally, it is possible that more people are listening to music while they work. Without the oversight of management and fellow co-workers, people may find a desire to listen to music as work shifts to become a more independent effort than it was before.
Finally, the increase in radio listening could mean people are taking more frequent breaks throughout the day. With only vague guidelines on when the work has to be completed, some may not feel compelled to have to work through the entire work day, but rather spread that work throughout the entire day in return for more afternoon breaks.