Despite Other Options, Millennials Stay Tuned In to Traditional Radio

In a media environment where the winds of change rarely quiet, one medium has stood strong against them—and it’s probably not the one you would expect.

Contrary to years of predictions, radio is alive and well, and even maintains a hold on younger generations. Most notable among these generations are the millennials, those born between 1981 and 1996, and the first generation to come of age in the new millennium, according to the Pew Research Center.

Their purchasing power is still growing, their influence on popular culture can’t be ignored, and they’re the subject of thousands of headlines a day, mot accusing them of either ruining or fundamentally changing our American way of life.

So here’s a new one for you: when it comes to radio, millennials maintain the status quo.

Millennials and RadioNielsen’s most recent ‘State of the Media’ report on audio reveals that more Americans tune in to AM/FM radio each week (93%) than watch television, or use smartphones, tablets or computers.

The data shows more than 72 million millennials listen to AM/FM radio each week. Even in the face of streaming services and YouTube, year-over-year data has the cohort listening to just about the same amount of radio as they were last year.

Among the most popular radio formats by total listening share are news and talk radio, where most Audio News Releases and Radio Media Tours air. This means that advertisers and others interested in targeted messaging shouldn’t discount radio—it can still pay dividends.

Millennial radio listeners become even more interesting as you look at the subgroups that comprise them. Particularly noteworthy is that 96 percent of Hispanic millennials tune in to terrestrial radio on a weekly basis, according to Nielsen.

For those interested in reaching younger audiences, the big takeaway is that you don’t have to go to Instagram. In fact, you can turn to traditional media to grab a huge share of a valuable audience at a low cost.

With services like Radio Media Tours, you’ll see another benefit: the creation of news angles, or the use of a strong talent can endow your content with authenticity. You can meet audiences where they are, and even provide them with the kind of content they tuned in to listen to.

And while news and talk formats are popular, considering media buys on music stations can aid public relations professionals in reaching even larger millennial audiences. Marketers with an interest in reaching Spanish-language radio listeners have even more to take away—if you want to reach Hispanic millennials, radio is as close to a guaranteed tactic as you’re going to get.