Audio Insights: Living in an “Earbud Era”

If you survey a bustling street, ride on public transportation, or browse the books at a college library, you’re going to encounter a common sight: people wearing earbuds or headphones.

Not surprisingly, anyone who purchases a smartphone these days get a pair of earbuds as part of the package. In addition to this, Americans will also purchase 126 Million additional sets of earbuds and headphones[i] this year, and they will use them for a substantial portion of their daily time spent listening to audio.

61% of Americans use headphones and they do so, on average, for 40% of their listening time. These numbers rise sharply among younger people[ii].

The “earbud era” has developed hand-in-hand with the rising popularity of personalized audio. Earbuds not only allow each listener to enjoy the audio they prefer without bothering anyone else, they deliver that audio inside the head, literally!

Marketers can leverage the close relationship between audio and its listeners if the message is targeted, spoken in a conversational tone (no shouting) with a clear call to action. Pandora delivers that targeted earbud-wearing audience the music assembled just for them.

[i] Statista, February 2018
[ii] Edison Research Share of Ear study, Q1, 2018

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