By comparison, in 2019 local radio stations generated $12.8 billion in over-the-air revenue and just over $1 billion in digital. This was a -1.6 percent decrease in total revenue from 2018. The 2020 revenue estimate indicates a -10.7 percent decrease in over the air advertising revenue from 2019. One area of growth for radio is in digital. According to the latest Share of Ear® update from Edison Research, a portion of AM/FM radio listening online hit 10 percent for the first time in May.
“In 2018, we projected that radio’s digital platforms would reach $1 billion by 2019 and last year the industry hit this mark,” said Mark Fratrik, SVP and Chief Economist, BIA Advisory Services. “For 2020, our ad forecast shows that digital sales, including streaming, will stay steady. Then by 2021, Radio online revenue will start to climb back up again. On the over-the-air side, we see a bigger COVID hit, with a steep drop in 2020 and some recovery back by 2021.”
- Finance/Insurance $2.00 B
- Retail $1.97 B
- Automotive $1.50 B
- Technology $1.30 B
“Audiences are spending more time on streaming and podcasting in ways they haven’t in pre-pandemic times,” said Rick Ducey, BIA Managing Director. “These new audio habits are likely to take root and grow over time and advertisers will look to all platforms to promote their message. Radio sellers who see and respond to the audience and advertiser acceleration to digital audio with new formats, content and appeal for different demo groups will see better than average performances.”