Canadian podcast listeners are an on-demand audience: CPL study

Canadian podcast listeners largely consume media on-demand, according to the initial findings of the 2019 Canadian Podcast Listener (CPL) study.

The third annual CPL study is set to be presented at next week’s RAIN Summit in Toronto, the results of which are based on a market representative online sample survey of more than 4,500 Canadian adults from Maru Voice Canada.

One of the study’s initial insights is that podcasts are opening the door for advertisers to reach the elusive on-demand audience, which encompasses premium tier video and music streaming subscribers, in addition to those who listen to audio books.

In fact, it found that the majority of monthly podcast listeners surveyed consume audio books and paid music streaming on a weekly basis as their media of choice, followed by free music streaming, and then video streaming services like Crave and Netflix. Ad-supported media like YouTube, online news sites, social media, print magazines and newspapers, AM/FM radio, and network cable TV were less popular with podcast listeners.

The study’s authors – Audience Insights Inc. and Ulster Media, with support from The Podcast Exchange (TPX) – say that while freedom to choose premium content without ads is hardly a new phenomenon, citing ad-free cable networks such as HBO – which have been around since the early 1970s, they maintain that paid music streaming services are doing to music what Netflix did to movies and TV, ultimately leaving advertisers fewer places to reach higher-income consumers willing to pay for ad-free content on-demand.

“Findings from The Canadian Podcast Listener 2019 show that podcasts can help advertisers unlock this attractive audience,” the study concludes. “On-demand consumers have a marked affinity with podcasts, with weekly users of digital on-demand media indexing well above traditional media for being monthly podcast listeners.”

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Connie Thiessen
Connie Thiessen
Connie has worked coast-to-coast as a reporter, editor, anchor and host at CKNW and News 1130 in Vancouver, News 95.7 and CBC in Halifax, and CFCW Edmonton, among other stations. With a passion for music, film and community service, she led News 95.7 to a 2013 Atlantic Journalism Award and regional RTDNA award for Best Radio Newscast. More recently, she was nominated for Music Journalist of the Year at Canadian Music Week 2019. To report a typo or error please email -

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