Marketers call them Generation Z. Tampa Bay small business owners call them teenagers. Whatever 12-17 years old are called, they live in homes cluttered with video games, smartphones, and tablets. They have easy access to Snapchat, YouTube, Instagram, and hundreds of other apps their parents have never heard of.
What may come as a surprise to many local business owners, despite an over-abundance of media options, Tampa radio stations dominate teenagers' media consumption.
Last week, according to Nielsen, 196,800 teens tuned-in to Tampa radio. The chart below puts into clear perspective how radio fits into a teen's media life.
Teens just don't listen to the radio, they immerse themselves in radio. Each day, according to Nielsen, teens spend 4 hours and 32 minutes consuming media. Twenty-five percent of that time is spent with radio.
Here is something else that will surprise many Tampa Bay business owners. Nielsen research reveals that once teens join the workforce, their radio consumption dramatically increases.
According to Nielsen, back in spring of 2011, 12-17 year olds spent an average of 9 hours and 15 minutes with radio each week, Not internet radio. Not satellite radio. Just AM/FM radio.
Fast forward six years. These same people (now 18-to-24-year olds) spend an average of 10 hours and 15 minutes with radio each week. In other words, when teens grow up, they spend more time listening to the radio.
Nielsen points out that employment is a significant factor to consider among these age groups because a large amount of total radio listening comes from employed Americans who tune in when they’re away from home.
Comparing the data from 2011, where only 5% of radio listeners aged 12-17 were employed (either full or part-time), it’s clear why radio usage increased as they’ve aged: now, 64% of these 18-to-24 year-old listeners are employed. Whether they’re in their cars more commuting to and from work or using radio as a companion throughout the workday, employed people have a greater opportunity to spend time with their favorite radio station.
Most local small business owners don't sell or market products of interest to teens. So, then, why is it important to know that Generation Z invests so much of their time listening to Tampa radio stations?
A robust teen audience is indicative of radio's general health and sustainability. Teens will become adults and will carry their media habits forward with them. This once again proves that radio, despite uninformed claims to the contrary, continues to be a viable advertising choice for Tampa Bay small business owners.