In advertising, insights, media relations, online advertising, political communications

CBS Corp. announced recently it is planning to exit the radio business – an industry it helped create nearly a century ago – to focus its resources on digital platforms instead.  The news serves as another reminder to marketing and PR pros that the nature of audio content consumption is changing.

To understand why CBS is exiting radio, look at the chart below. Consumers are spending far less time listening to radio and far more time consuming content on mobile devices.


radio trend


The obvious result: Radio advertising revenue growth has halted while digital ad revenue is expected to skyrocket through 2019.

radio 2


Radio may be knocked down, but it’s not knocked out. Consumers still seek out audio content; they just increasingly consume it online and on-demand. Check out the growth in digital radio, which includes Spotify, Pandora and more.

radio 3


We do not yet advise clients to abandon legacy radio, particularly if their target audience is over 40. However, we are increasingly helping companies devise advertising campaigns for radio streaming services that allow us to target users based on behavior, demographics, geography and more.


CBS is making the shift. Maybe you should, too.