Digital Audio

Traditional TV Takes a Dive: Why Your Campaign Needs Audio

Oct 26, 2023

Audiences are moving away from linear TV, and it's time for advertisers to follow. Digital audio allows brands to reach consumers everywhere and in a more targeted way, maximizing ad spend.

TV isn’t what it once was. Audiences are spending less time with entertainment that ties them to a specific time (like primetime) or place (like the couch). With the rise of the internet and ease of smart devices, people are spending less time with traditional media.

For the first time, viewership for traditional TV fell below a 50% share. The control and convenience of digital entertainment alternatives are a hit with consumers, luring them away from traditional media. For advertisers, these technological advancements bring better targeting, personalization, and measurement. 

So, why is broadcast still taking up so much of your ad budget? Though your customers are spending 31% of their time with audio, it typically only accounts for 9% of ad spend. That gap in your ad budget means you’re likely missing opportunities to reach your target consumers.

It’s time to stop media planning like it’s 1999. 

As TV Declines, Digital Audio Is on the Rise

With digital audio, audiences can get off the couch and take entertainment with them, anywhere and on their schedule. That’s why the time they’re spending with digital audio has risen 183% in the last decade. Music, podcasts, live shows, they all give listeners both the content and freedom they crave. And your brand messages can be right there with them as they get ready, commute, work, exercise, cook, clean, relax, and socialize—all activities that make it hard to consume visual media.

Audiences are spending more time with digital audio

Digital Audio Reaches Cord Cutters

Cables, dishes, antennas—those aren’t the major conduits of household entertainment anymore. Nearly two in three of our adult listeners 18+ are cord cutters or cord nevers, meaning they either ditched cable TV or never subscribed at all. And only 36% of adult listeners 18+ are current cable/satellite TV subscribers (a 7% decrease since Q3 2021). So, you can’t count on traditional TV ad spend to reach digital audio listeners. 

Entertainment Audiences Feel Good About

Two words: couch potato. Sure, we all indulge in the behavior, but do we feel good about it? Well, digital audio listeners are over two times more likely to say audio is a good place to spend their time than traditional TV. And they are four times more likely to describe audio as a mood booster.

Listeners are also more likely to say they find the content authentic, which is a big deal for advertisers. Brands can run ads in a trusted environment, leveraging positive associations with digital audio. And the impact is about more than good vibes and authenticity. Digital audio ads are 36% better than TV ads at making a lasting impression on audiences.

Bring Your Media Plan into the Modern Era

Follow audiences into the digital space with audio. It’s time to reassess media plans with large budget allocations to traditional TV. Not only are audiences moving away from the medium, but digital entertainment alternatives allow brands to reach them in a more targeted way—which maximizes ad spend. And advertisers can connect with consumers throughout the day, no matter the activity, with digital audio.

Ready to update your media plan? Want to see how digital audio compares to AM/FM radio, CTV, and social media? Check out the report: Digital Audio vs.


  • 1.

    Nielsen’s July 2023 report of The Gauge

  • 2.

    WARC The Investment Gap: Understanding the Value of Audio, 2021

  • 3.

    Edison Research Share of Ear Study, Q2 2023, Percent More Time with Audio, Compared to Non-Digital Audio Listeners, Base: P13+

  • 4.

    Pandora Entertainment Soundboard Study 2023

  • 5.

    Pandora Soundboard, 2023 User Study, A18+ (N=4,632), March 2023

  • 6.

    Neuro Insight Study and Pandora Conversion Experiment

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