NATIONWIDE RESEARCH AT A GLANCE
In the Finney Media 2021 Why Listen?® Survey there were almost 11,000 respondents from three different formats: Music stations, Music/Teaching stations, and all-Teaching stations & programs.
The centerpiece of the survey was the reasons Christian radio listeners listen. It turns out, in some cases, that listeners who came from CCM stations listen for reasons similar to listeners from Music/Teaching stations and all-Teaching stations . . . and then there are a few reasons that are different. Here are the percentages, by format, of the Main Reasons respondents gave as to why they listen:
(Move to before the list to reduce confusion.) Note: The answers in bold are the ones not common to all three formats. The ones not in bold made the Top Five Main Reasons for each of the formats.
Music Station Respondents
- I like the worshipful Christian music 92%
- It helps me worship God throughout the day 91%
- I want to be encouraged 83%
- It helps me grow spiritually 78%
- I want to get away from negativity on other stations 67%
Music/Teaching Station Respondents
- It helps me worship God throughout the day 86%
- It helps me grow spiritually 85%
- I like the worshipful Christian music 80%
- I want to be encouraged 76%
- It helps me understand the Bible better 68%
All-Teaching Station Respondents
- It helps me grow spiritually 87%
- It helps me worship God throughout the day 81%
- It helps me understand the Bible better 79%
- I want to help spread Truth 72%
- I want to be encouraged 70%
A few observations:
- It’s fascinating to us that “It helps me worship God throughout the day” shows up strongly even among the Teaching station listeners who play no music. Christian radio listeners, it would appear, identify not only the songs but what happens between the songs as helping with their worship experience from radio. Your songs help them worship. So do the breaks you do between the songs. Definitely something to pray about as you plan your content.
- Notice the Bible-focused and evangelism reasons that showed up higher for the stations that lean toward Teaching programs – “It helps me understand the Bible better” and “I want to help spread Truth” showing up much more strongly than those reasons did with music listeners.
- We believe that the biggest headline is this. When you look at the Main Reasons that are common to all three formats, “It helps me worship God throughout the day”, “It helps me grow spiritually” and “I want to be encouraged”, it is as if our listener is saying “I’m coming to you for SPIRITUAL ENCOURAGEMENT”.
Coming in November: The Top 5 Most Interesting On-Air Topics. There is one that is much bigger than all the others. You won’t want to miss it!
Chuck Finney’s had radio playing in his head since he was just a boy. Over the course of his career, he’s worked in programming, radio research, and audience connection. Chuck’s passion for words and communication is widely recognized and he’s won several industry awards.
If you ask Chuck how he’s doing, he’ll either say “Blessed, thank you,” or “I really get to do this for a living?!” He’s the President of Finney Media, a speaker and author who loves telling stories and helping you do the same. Chuck is married and has two adult daughters. He lives with his wife, Lynda, in the Dallas area. For more information, read about Chuck at finneymedia.com.