Surveys are an invaluable resource for entrepreneurs who want to learn more about their audience or consumer. If framed correctly, they can provide insight into what drives a person’s behavior, including their mindset and surrounding circumstances. So when gargantuan efforts like The Infinite Dial’s 2021 report are unveiled, we pay attention. If you’re a creator who wants to know not only the most popular digital media platforms but the kinds of people who gravitate toward each one, add it to your reading list.
The Infinite Dial report, done annually in collaboration with Edison Research and Triton Digital, is the longest-running survey (since 1998!) of digital media consumer behavior in the U.S. Through a nationwide telephone survey, it engages with thousands of Americans aged 12 and older about their interest in Internet media, including all of the social platforms we love, podcasting, smart audio, and more.
This year’s report was conducted in January and included 1,507 people. Among the topics covered were technology ownership, live streaming, online audio, social media usage, social media brand awareness, car audio, and more. Age demographics are also taken into consideration, so you can see how different groups interact with these technologies.
I won’t lie—it’s a hefty study but well worth a deep dive for those who want to refine their marketing strategies. And if you’re someone who struggles to know which technology is worth investing in, it could help you make a decision.
Before you read the entire report, here are some relevant observations made by The Infinite Dial:
Podcasts are more popular than ever.
“Podcasting has grown significantly, especially with weekly listeners…In 2021, the composition of female listeners reached an all-time high. While podcast consumers continue to be mostly white, the medium exhibited very strong gains with Hispanic/Latino listeners and with Black listeners and now very nearly reflects the diversity of the U.S. population.”
Watch out Facebook.
“While most social media platforms exhibited modest or no growth, TikTok surged, especially among 12-34-year-olds. For the first time in Infinite Dial history, Facebook is no longer indicated as the most-used platform by a majority of social media users, driven mainly by 12-34 preference for Instagram, TikTok, and Snapchat.”
All hail Spotify.
Spotify has solidified its spot as the largest single-source for online audio, and has played a role in the growth of podcasting (especially with younger listeners).”
Subscribe to the BlogHer newsletter for more tactical advice, exclusive content, and timely event updates.