Generation Radio!

We’ve been hearing a lot about generational differences lately, with growing numbers of Millennials in the workforce and Baby Boomers reaching retirement age. Surely each generation has varying media habits, but all still listen to radio. In the New York metro, 13.4 million Adults 18+ tune to the Radio each week (Scarborough, Apr16-Feb17).

There are also spending differences between the generations. Currently Generation X tops the charts of household spending according to a U.S. Department of Labor blog, “Spending Habits by Generation.” Generation X has an annual household average spending of $66,981. These folks are also heavy radio listeners. Broken out by quintile, nearly half (48%) of Adults 35-49 in the New York metro fall into the two highest quintiles for radio listening (Scarborough, Oct15-Aug16).

Generation X’s unique spending habits mean that these consumers outperform the market in various categories. For example, New York metro Adults 35-49 have a 33% longer mean work commute time compared to the general market (Scarborough, Oct15-Aug16). That’s more time with a radio at their fingertips, and more time when a purchasing decision is just a pit stop away.

Radio is an excellent place to reach Generation Xers. Here’s a list of the top 10 formats listened to by New York metro Adults 35-49. Hot AC leads with 2.1 million (58%) tuning in each week (Scarborough, Apr16-Feb17).

The generation with the next highest spending is the Baby Boomers, with an annual household average spending of $59,646 (U.S. Department of Labor). This group also exhibits heavy radio listening. Nearly half (46%) of New York metro Adults 50-69 fall into the two highest quintiles for radio listening (Scarborough, Apr16-Feb17).

As you’d expect, Baby Boomer spending differs from other generations. For example, New York metro Adults 50-69 plan to pay a mean of 9% more than the market average on a new vehicle in the next year (Scarborough, Apr16-Feb17). Advertisers often put too much emphasis on a particular target demo when the older generation is looking to spend more money.

Baby Boomers also listen to slightly different radio formats. Adult Contemporary tops the list here, followed closely by Classic Hits (Scarborough, Oct15-Aug16).

The generation with the third-highest spending power is the Millennials, with an annual household average spending of $47,113. Public opinion may say that Millennials don’t listen to the radio, but that’s a myth. Nearly nine out of ten (88%) of all New York metro Adults 18-34 are exposed to radio each week (Scarborough, Apr16-Feb17).

Millennials have a different focus when it comes to spending. For example, New York metro Adults 18‑34 outperform the market by 19% when it comes to the mean number of times a quick-service restaurant was visited in the past month (Scarborough, Apr16-Feb17).

Again we see differences in format listening with the Millennials. Pop CHR comes in first, with 55% tuning in on a weekly basis.

Radio is still a ubiquitous medium and a great place to reach consumers of all ages. It offers the opportunity to tailor your message by choosing the age group and format that reaches your most likely target customer. Contact your radio AE today and get your ROI!