SCA records its biggest month on record for on-demand listening

Staff Writer

Southern Cross Austereo says its audio-on-demand platforms are breaking all listener and download records as audiences turn to radio during the COVID-19 health crisis.

SCA has also unearthed some interesting insights on consumer behaviour as more Australian’s relocate from offices to work from home.

The data was sourced from Adswizz Audiometrix, Omny Studio and its own iQ COVID-19 Survey.

Radio remains the most consumed platform, at 66%, as SCA listeners work from home.

For the month of March, listening on demand, including live radio streaming, on mobile, smart speakers and podcasts has exceeded all past records, according to the network.

“We have now comfortably eclipsed the previous all-time monthly streaming record to reach 9.11 million and it’s unprecedented that news makes up 10% of that figure, It’s also great to see podcasting has grown 55% month on month,” said SCA content chief, Dave Cameron.

“Our current listener behaviour is showing that our audiences are already, and will continue to, rely on audio to stay updated, informed, connected and comforted.

“SCA’s content teams have also pivoted to produce some fantastic content to keep listeners happy and to enjoy music or a laugh in these anxious times, as well as a series of random acts of kindness. I’m incredibly proud of our team who are working really diligently to keep listeners informed and entertained.”

Weekday listeners are up 15% in the past 14 days to the end of March. Total live radio streaming listening hours consumed is up 12.4% to 9.11m, when compared to February.

Smart speaker live radio streaming is up 9.8% to 1.7m listening hours. Listening sessions includes 2+ hours and 19% of all SCA live radio streaming occurs on a smart speaker.

SCA podcast downloads are up 55% over the same period, with catch up radio episodes up 66% and original shows up 43%.

There were more than 460,000 news on-demand listens for March, a month on month increase of 130%, and more than double the increases during the Summer bushfires.

SCA Head of News & Current Affairs

SCA head of news & current affairs, Natasha Jobson, said: “Since early March we have gone with a ‘COVID-19 facts first’ approach, carefully avoiding the hype and scaremongering and offering only the most legitimate information possible.

“A revised rostering system now allows our journalists to focus on writing, audio editing, interviewing and reading roles – with a large portion now doing that from their ‘home newsroom’ setups.

“We are mobilised to deliver news from anywhere, for anywhere. We are sharing findings from SCA’s research team with listeners, such as their biggest concerns around COVID-19 and also some lighter information, such as the most popular board game to play whilst at home – Monopoly for the win!”

SCA’s own Research team, found through its independent studies, that one in four (24%) of its audience is consuming more radio than they did prior to the COVID-19 outbreak.

More than a quarter (26%) of SCA’s audience expects to consume more radio in the next month and 66% of SCA’s audience who are working from home will be listening to the radio.

About 40% of SCA’s audience also expects to consume the same amount or more podcasts in the next month and 64% expect to consume the same amount or more music streaming next month.

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Jayme Doran
24 Apr 2020 - 12:41 am

Lately SCA Regional Stations have not been airing local news bulletins at 6:30,7:30 & 8:30am in breakfast & Midday with the National News airing instead. I checked Maryborough, Mackay, Townsville & Cairns via the live streams as well as 100.7 here in Toowoomba They’re all airing the same national bulletin. It has been happening since Mid March, it might just be because of the Coronavirus pandemic at the moment.

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