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Moms & Media 2017

| May 12, 2017

By Holland Cooke
Media Consultant


BOSTON — Again this year, just in time for Mother’s Day, Edison Research and Triton Digital update their “Moms & Media” study.  Edison VP Melissa DeCesare led Thursday’s webinar through survey data from 248 moms – women with at least one child living at home – interviewed for her company’s ongoing “Infinite Dial” study.

Because Mom is The Secretary of The (family) Treasury, this sample is of real interest to radio:

  • 66% interviewed were 35+
  • 53% work full-time, 14% are employed part time, 19% are homemakers.

What we have come to expect from Mom?

  • “She lives in the mobile space.”
  • “Her mobile lifestyle dictates how she adopts other behaviors.”
  • “She drives Social Media; checking in multiple times per day.”
  • “She doesn’t shy away from new media or technology.”
  • “She is a heavy media consumer.”

How to get her ear?

Talk to her on the phone. 

86% own a smartphone (vs. 81% of the population overall), up from 79% last year (76%).  DeCesare characterizes these numbers as “reflective of a society that is always connected.”

Tablet use has leveled-off.  65% of moms own iPad or a similar device (64% in 2016 and 2015, after surging from 47% in 2014), suggesting that “she is satisfied with smartphones, and doesn’t really need another mobile device,” as we see from how she uses radio-without-the-radio:

Percent of Moms who have listened to online radio:

(AM/FM streams, and Internet-only audio)

Ever In the past month In the past week
2017 80% 71% 59%
2016 74% 61% 53%
2015 78% 60% 48%

Mom’s online Time Spent Listening is considerable, and growing.

  • In the last week, she listened to Internet radio – including AM/FM streams — a whopping 13 hours and 54 minutes.
  • And the pie itself is bigger. While 33% of ‘net TSL was diverted from local AM/FM transmitters; 34% of online audio consumption is additional weekly listening time.

Why Mom listens online?

“For flexibility and choice:”

  • 80% “listen to playlists that reflect your mood or taste at a given moment”
  • 78% “for the ability to skip songs”
  • 75% “for the ability to immediately hear a specific song”
  • 71% “to hear songs or music that you don’t often hear on FM radio”
  • 68% “because there are fewer commercials”
  • 57% “to discover new songs”
  • 44% “to listen to your favorite FM radio stations on your favorite mobile device”
  • 41% “for the ability to store your music collection online”

Pandora is her fave.

  • 53% of moms who’ve used an Internet-only audio source use it.
  • 22% listen to iHeart Radio
  • 15% are on Spotify
  • 13% use Apple Music
  • 12% listen to Amazon Music

“Moms get Social,” increasingly.

93% are on Social Media (88% last year, 86% in 2015, 78% in 2014, 73% in 2013).

62% go-Social “several times per day.”

67% interact via several Social Media sites.


  • “Facebook continues to own Moms’ Social Media use.” 78% go-there weekly.  Up from 74% last year.
  • Instagram is up, from 19% last year to 30% in 2017.
  • Pinterest: 29% (31% in 2016)
  • “Snapchat is getting attention:” 10% to 23% in the past year.
  • WhatsApp more-than-doubled too: 6% to 15%
  • Twitter use us also up: 7% to 13%
  • LinkedIn: 9% to 10%

“Podcasts gain even more traction with Moms.”

Her audio consumption reflects our on-demand culture.

Percent of Moms who have listened to a podcast:
Ever In the past month In the past week
2017 46% 29% 19%
2016 37% 21% 14%
2015 34% 17% 9%

How?  66% of her podcast listening is via smartphone; 34% on a computer.

Where?  54% at home; 17% at work; 13% in-car; 17% “someplace else.”

How much?  Average time for weekly listeners: 4 hours and 40 minutes!  Average number of podcasts: 7.

When?  67% click-to-listen immediately; 21% download manually to listen later; 10% subscribe to auto-downloads.

Her other media use?

Yes, radio!  65% listen to AM/FM – including via streams – each week.

43% use YouTube for music weekly.

67% have Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon Prime; and Netflix is #1 with 59% subscribing, and 50% using weekly.

“Alexa?”  So-called “smart speakers” are “definitely up and coming.”  Awareness is high, ownership is just beginning.

Accordingly?  Talk where Mom listens.  To see the entire presentation, click “The Research Moms” on the “Resources” tab at

And if you still have yours, and if you can’t be with her Sunday, call you Mother, willya?  And if you don’t still have her, I think you’ll find, as I have, that she never really left you.

Holland Cooke ( is a media consultant working at the intersection of broadcasting and the Internet.  Follow him on Twitter @HollandCooke, and see HC on June 2, when his presentation “You HAVE Options” kicks-off the Talkers 2017: A New Era conference in New York City.

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Category: Analysis