Asian Podcast Listening Habits

Timi Siytangco, Account Director Sales, Acast, Singapore

Acast, the largest independent podcast company, looks after more than 100 000 global podcasts. Their main principle is that podcasts should be available for all people from all regions. 

Their research has found that while podcast is still an emerging medium, it acts as an influential media channel. The results highlighted that 53% of users listen to podcasts daily or multiple times a week. “While listeners are important,” Timi Siytangco added, “engagement is equally as important.” There are several reasons why podcasts have built a loyal audience.

Firstly, podcasts are stories we choose to listen to. Listeners making the active decision to seek out certain podcasts is something brands consider. Unlike aimless scrolling or half-listening to television or audio streaming, 29% of audiences consider podcasts a valuable use of time, even more so than social media (22%).

Besides this, the wide range of topics covered by podcasts is another benefit. Business and finance discussions may be popular, but other areas such as pop culture, psychology, and society are also fan favorites. Thirdly, findings showed that 72% of audiences are listening with intent, as compared to 56% for cable TV. Among audience motivations include wanting something thought provoking, motivational and useful media, and episodes good for learning. 

Listeners form connections with podcasters, since podcast hosts also act as influencers. The hosts are entertaining, topics are relevant to listeners’ lives, and listeners trust hosts as sources of information. Podcasts are most successful when communities gather digitally and virtually. For example, communities of Singaporeans discussing Singaporean culture and traditions.

Brands now also have the opportunity to become a part of conversation while maintaining authenticity and relevance. Highlighting brands on podcasts raises their profile and credibility. As an example, 21% of podcast listeners have discovered a new brand on a podcast.

Not only that, companies can harness podcast influence beyond the podcast. This means the ability to redirect their podcast audience to other platforms. Timi said, “You could become your own little media empire.” Podcasts also drive real consumer action. 96% of listeners have taken action after hearing a podcast advertisement. Listeners may look at the brand’s social media or website, and share with friends and family.

Finally, advertising gives brands a voice people want to hear. For example, TED talks daily aired a sponsored ad for Google chrome, which observed a 246% lift in unprompted brand recall. These findings are significantly important for brands and advertisers looking to shift their budget away from social media, cable TV, and familiar mediums to podcasts.

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