Nearly 50% of kids in the US have listened to a podcast, according to new study

Edison Research’s Kids Podcast Listener Report highlights listening habits of kids aged 6-12

Almost half of kids in the US have listened to a podcast, according to the newly released Kids Podcast Listener Report by Edison Research and podcast platform Kids Listen. 

The report highlighted podcast listening habits of kids aged 6-12 in the US, based on a national online survey of 1,272 adults conducted in June 2023. All survey respondents are parents/guardians of at least one child, and 245 kids who said they listened to a podcast in the last month were invited to participate in an additional parent-administered survey, alongside their parents, to answer questions about their podcast listening habits. Additional sponsors of the report include American Public Media, Disney Podcasts, Tumble Media and Wondery. 

“It is such a privilege to work with so many great and creative minds from the kids podcast space,” said Edison Research vice-president Megan Lazovick. “These companies coming together for a study like this is evidence that kids podcasts deserve more attention from the industry as a whole. There is a tremendous opportunity here to bring to the platform young listeners who have a lifetime of listening ahead of them."

Although other audio mediums such as online audio services, AM/FM radio, and audiobooks were considered more popular among kids, podcasts are growing in popularity with 29% of kids having listened to one in the last month and 25% of kids listening to podcasts nearly every day, according to their parents. This is 1% higher than listeners aged 13+ who listen to podcasts every day, according to Edison Research’s Share of Ear report. 

The number of kids listening to podcasts also reflects the consumption habits of their parents with the amount of kid monthly listeners jumping to 42% if their parents are also monthly podcast listeners. More kids are likely to be introduced to podcasts through the parents (80%).

Top reasons why kids are engaging with podcasts are because they’re both fun to listen to and that it is a passive medium, with kids being able to listen to them while doing other things or while spending time with family. Kids also mostly listen to podcasts while at home (89%) compared to over 40% of US adults who are more likely to listen to podcasts during commuting and travelling hours (Nielson Audio Today Report 2023). 

Additionally, the report highlights how podcasts can be used as an educational tool for kids with 87% of kid monthly podcast listeners stating that they have shared something they’ve learned from a podcast with other people and 94% stating that they learn new things from podcasts. 

The growing percentage of kid podcast listeners can lead to higher engagement from the parents with 74% answering that they have followed a kid’s podcast on social media and more than 50% engaging in other ways such as purchasing merchandise, paying a subscription, donating money, and attending a live or virtual event hosted by the kid’s podcast.

Edison Research has partnered with a number of companies such as SXM Media to report on the podcast listening and consumption habits of certain demographics. This includes the Gen Z Podcast Listener Report which surveyed US podcast listeners aged 13-24 and highlighted that many of the monthly listeners today started to listen to podcasts at a younger age with 57% starting out as a teenager and 16% starting out as a child.