Generation Alpha: New Target Audience for Podcasts

As per the podcast statistics, there are more than 5 million podcasts worldwide and more than 460 million active listeners, which is estimated to reach 504.9 million by the end of 2024. In 2023, the podcast industry was valued at $23.56 billion and is projected to reach $131.13 billion by 2030. In the United States, 42% of people over 12 listen to podcasts at least once a month, as per Forbes India. Though all generations are embracing the new medium of information-providing platforms, podcast producers are attracting Generation Alpha by developing programmes that are particularly for them.  

Generation Alpha, born from 2010 onwards, is the first generation to grow up entirely in the digital age, always surrounded by tablets and smartphones. As per the Marketing Agency Razorfish report, the number of Gen Alpha is projected to reach 2.2 billion worldwide by the end of 2024. Also, by 2025, there will be more Gen Alpha than baby boomers. Though children are always the future, they’re an exclusively valuable audience for podcast producers. According to Edison Research publications, The Infinite Dial 2023″ and “Kids Podcast Listener Report,” Millennials represent the most significant proportion of podcast listeners in the USA. 50% of podcast listeners listen to podcasts once a week; it is also a fact that Americans spend more time listening to podcasts, while 23% of Generation Alpha are weekly podcast listeners. Podcast producers found that Generation Alpha is the age group for which they must design and develop programmes. 

As per Edison Research’s “The Gen Z Podcast Listener Report 2023,” 13-24-year-olds who started listening to podcasts as children spend an average of three hours more per week listening to podcasts than those who started later in their lives. This proved to be highly crucial for the podcast industry, so they were inclined to attract Gen Alpha children. Since podcasting reach has grown in the last few years, some podcasters have already created verticals targeting younger listeners. For example, Wondery’s subscription option, Wondery+ Kids, and iHeartRadio’s Creativity network in partnership with Collab Inc. Simultaneously, kid’s entertainment companies like CoComelon, Arthur and American Girl have all jumped into podcasting. 

When it comes to the Gen Alpha podcast, the production of Disney can’t slip from the mind. The company has announced the launch of a podcast about “Frozen,” celebrating its tenth anniversary in 2023. The Disney Frozen Podcast: Forces of Nature will comprise 12 episodes, targeting 6-12-year-olds. And what’s better than adopting literary work keeping children in mind, like the books of “Dr. Seuss”? On September 18, 2023, Amazon’s podcast division, Wondery, launched a podcast adaptation of the children’s classic “The Cat in the Hat.” The podcast featured songs to recite the alphabet, tongue twisters, to repeat and word games. Undoubtedly, this is a fun way to keep children engaged in a format that doesn’t feature a distracting video. As per Edison Research’s Kids Podcast Listener Report, “18% of parents feel that podcasts for their children are lacking on platforms. Kids specifically like podcasts about games (51%), and music (43%), comedy (39%), short stories (39%), adventure (36%), and bedtime stories (36%). 
Podcast producers may target Gen Alpha but still hesitate to invest in such young listeners. One of the major barriers to investing in children’s podcasts is the lack of profit. No doubt podcasts are popular worldwide, but some countries spend more time tuning into podcasts than others; for instance, the United States has 40% monthly podcast listeners, the UK has 27.9% monthly listeners, and India has 12% monthly podcast listeners. As the podcast industry takes on a new height among Gen Alpha, it will be a significant source to collect information and an ideal way to spend spare time in the coming years.

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