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Radio’s slice of the online pie

From Inside Radio:

J.P. Morgan analyst John Blackledge says “increased investment by the radio operators has been driving gains in unique visitors [to Internet Radio] in 2006” and says they’re even beginning to see revenue flow from that. A year ago (October 2005) terrestrial radio operators who streamed pulled about 21.5% of Internet radio’s unique visitors. But in October of 2006 — 32.5%. Blackledge says CBS and Clear Channel combined “captured more than 19% of total unique visitors to Internet radio in October 2006.” The month-to-month total numbers for Internet listening showed a slight decline between September and October.

Interesting statistics. I can’t identify the source, but let’s pretend that they’re true.

On the surface, 32.5% seems very high. But radio has such a huge awareness and trial and usage advantage over any other source of Internet audio, that it’s more surprising the number is this small.

The fact that it has grown over the past year could be explained strictly by the increasing number of stations (even large market stations) which are (finally) online.

So, in other words, these numbers are pacing behind what we would expect under ideal circumstances.

My expectation is that this proportion will continue to increase but will max at 40% and decline thereafter.

Not noted here are the other big online sources of unique listeners. What are radio’s biggest competitors online?

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