Freeman Cebu Business

Podcast listenership in Phl hits 17 million

Ehda M. Dagooc - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines — Aside from social media as the new platform for entertainment and information, more Filipinos are now listening to podcasts.

A study, "Beyond the Headphones: The Portrait of a Podcast Listener as Filipino,” revealed that 17 million internet-connected Filipinos now regularly listen to podcast programs. This covers 19.8 percent of the 86.98 million internet-connected population aged 16 to 64.

The report, a collaboration among the country’s three largest podcast networks—The Pod Network, Anima Podcast, PumPodcast, and socio-cultural research firm The Fourth Wall, highlighted the growing popularity of podcasts in the Philippines, which boasts an

According to the report, which surveyed hundreds of respondents, the popularity of podcasts has been rising since 2020. While the Internet (81.9 percent) and social media (80.8 percent) remained the most preferred information platforms, in 2023, podcasts (50.5 percent) have surpassed other media platforms such as online video streaming sites (40.4 percent), online news portals (22.1 percent), and television (19.9 percent) as the most preferred information source.

The report details that the rise of podcasts may be explained by the respondents' prioritization of accessibility (82 percent) and convenience (74 percent) when choosing their media platform.

Significantly, the report revealed that most of the country's podcast listeners are millennials or Generation Y, or those aged 25 to 34, living in urban areas.

"Our research has found that the majority of podcast audiences tend to listen to podcasts after work or school hours, when commuting, or while doing household chores. This pattern is in line with global trends where podcasts serve as a preferred source of both entertainment and information. Audiences choose podcasts for their ability to seamlessly integrate into daily routines, offering a unique mix of engaging and informative content," said The Fourth Wall Research Director John Brylle Bae.

A 2022 study by the Pew Research Center indicated that 67percent of American podcast listeners claim that the podcasts they subscribe to discuss news and current events. Of those who get news from podcasts, 87% expect the information to be mostly accurate.

The report also uncovered the most listened-to podcast genres in the Philippines. About 74 percent of those surveyed revealed they listen to comedy podcasts led by podcasts like The KoolPals, followed by personal development (64 percent), culture (55 percent), and politics (49 percent).

The survey suggests that podcast consumers gravitate towards topics that are both entertaining and informative, underscoring their preference for engaging yet substantial content.

The event, in partnership with streaming platform Spotify and sponsored by WOW Fiesta and Breville, gathered over 200 professionals from industries like advertising, marketing, and public relations and featured discussions on the developing podcast landscape in the Philippines.

Alan Fontanilla, CEO of The Pod Network, said the growing popularity of podcasts in the Philippines, cited in the report, provides advertisers and marketers with another avenue to reach their audiences.

"We are at an intersection in the evolution of media consumption in the Philippines. As more Filipinos tune into podcasts for their unique blend of entertainment and information, we see an invaluable opportunity for creators and advertisers alike to engage with an audience that values depth and accessibility. We are excited about what's to come as we celebrate and leverage this dynamic shift towards audio-first content,” noted Fontanilla.

The report forecasts that podcast listenership will continue to expand, particularly in rural areas, as digital penetration deepens across the Philippines. This trend is supported by the steadily increasing number of internet users, underscoring the emerging role of podcasts as a dominant media platform in the country. — (FREEMAN)

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