Cumulus Media and Signal Hill Insights Release Podcast Download – Fall 2023 Report

YouTube is #1 for Podcast Discovery

YouTube is the Most Used Platform Among Consumers

Content is King: Podcast Consumers Will Go Anywhere for Their Favorite Shows

NEW YORK – December 4, 2023 – Cumulus Media (NASDAQ: CMLS), in partnership with Signal Hill Insights, today released Cumulus Media and Signal Hill Insights’ Podcast Download – Fall 2023 Report, a comprehensive evaluation of the latest podcast audience trends. This eleventh edition of the study examining the habits of weekly podcast consumers is part of Cumulus Media’s commitment to share insights and research findings with the podcast community.  

A key finding uncovered in the Podcast Download Report is that podcast consumers continue to embrace YouTube as the number one podcast platform, especially with podcast discovery.   

“Throughout Cumulus’ long-running Podcast Download Report series, YouTube has gained strength as the number one place where consumers discover new podcasts,” said Pierre Bouvard, Chief Insights Officer, Cumulus Media. “This insight into podcast consumers is an important guide as the Cumulus Podcast Network invests to expand our shows into YouTube. Content still is the star attraction, however, so our primary focus remains providing distinctive and compelling programming for our podcast network.” 

“The platform findings are fascinating and challenge some of the conventional industry wisdom about podcast destinations,” said Paul Riismandel, Chief Insights Officer and Partner, Signal Hill Insights. “Podcast fans don’t appear particularly loyal to platforms. For instance, we see that the YouTube preference is utilitarian. Consumers who discover a podcast there stick with the platform because they like having video and the platform’s recommendations, and because YouTube is their primary entertainment and information destination. However, loyalty to the platform for podcasts is weak, since a majority of YouTube podcast consumers are listening to the same shows elsewhere.” 

The Fall 2023 edition reveals valuable insights for content creators and advertisers. Some highlights from the report:  

  • Audio is powerful. Podcast consumers spend a significant amount of time on YouTube listening to podcasts without watching the video. 
  • Since 2019, YouTube and Spotify have been growing among Podcast Newcomers at the expense of Apple Podcasts.
  • More than half of the weekly YouTube podcast audience say they have listened to the same podcasts in another place. 
  • YouTube consumers will switch platforms if the podcasts they access most on YouTube became available only on another platform such as Spotify or Apple Podcasts. 
  • Podcast consumers who watch video podcasts often have eyes on the screen. More than 6 in 10 look at the screen at least some of the time, even during ads. Since October 2021, podcast watchers have been increasing their time spent with eyes on the screen. 
  • Consumers’ podcast genre preference determines their preference for video. Listeners who prefer watchable podcasts are more likely to say they listen to Music and Sports podcasts than the audio-only consumers who lean towards True Crime. 

Cumulus Media and Signal Hill Insights’ Podcast Download – Fall 2023 Report is available in full for download at  


The study was executed from a nationally representative sample of weekly podcast consumers who represent 31% of the U.S. according to Edison’s Infinite Dial study. The report also examines heavy podcast consumers (those who listen 6+ hours per week) as well as when consumers started to listen to podcasts – Podcast Pioneers (4+ years ago), Podcast Intermediates (2-3 years ago), and Podcast Newcomers (past 12 months).  

Report Methodology   

Cumulus Media | Westwood One, in partnership with Signal Hill Insights, commissioned a study of weekly podcast consumers with MARU/Matchbox, a nationally recognized leader in consumer research. The eleventh installment in the series, this report includes questions trended back to the inaugural 2017 study. This study was fielded online using a nationally representative sample of 608 respondents who were adults aged 18 and older, spent at least one hour listening to or watching podcasts within the past week, and not employed in the advertising, public relations, marketing, market research, radio, television, digital, or podcasting industries. Surveys were conducted between October 13-19, 2023.  

About Signal Hill Insights   

Signal Hill Insights specializes in audio research, partnering with publishers, broadcasters, and advertisers to tap new opportunities in audio. Clients include many of North America’s leading broadcasters and podcast networks.  

About Cumulus Media 

Cumulus Media (NASDAQ: CMLS) is an audio-first media company delivering premium content to over a quarter billion people every month — wherever and whenever they want it. Cumulus Media engages listeners with high-quality local programming through 403 owned-and-operated radio stations across 85 markets; delivers nationally-syndicated sports, news, talk, and entertainment programming from iconic brands including the NFL, the NCAA, the Masters, CNN, the AP, the Academy of Country Music Awards, and many other world-class partners across more than 9,400 affiliated stations through Westwood One, the largest audio network in America; and inspires listeners through the Cumulus Podcast Network, its rapidly growing network of original podcasts that are smart, entertaining and thought-provoking. Cumulus Media provides advertisers with personal connections, local impact and national reach through broadcast and on-demand digital, mobile, social, and voice-activated platforms, as well as integrated digital marketing services, powerful influencers, full-service audio solutions, industry-leading research and insights, and live event experiences. Cumulus Media is the only audio media company to provide marketers with local and national advertising performance guarantees. For more information visit 

Contact: Karen Glover | Cumulus Media |