Too Big to Ignore: Radio in the Bedroom

In NuVoodoo Ratings Prospects Study Twelve conducted back in June, we observed the continuing phenomenon of Smart Speakers. When we first asked about Smart Speakers in Ratings Prospects Study Ten last summer we were surprised that our data showed that roughly 3 in 10 of our sample of 14-54’s across the panel of PPM markets already had access to one of these devices in their homes or workplaces. Since these new devices were such hot gifts in the holiday season at the end of 2017, we weren’t surprised with the growth we saw in our study back in January.

We expected that Smart Speaker growth would flatten out in our June update (and accelerate again across the holidays at the end of the year) – but we were wrong. Smart Speakers continue to climb, now connecting with nearly two in five persons 14-54 sampled across all PPM markets. And while we don’t show the numbers here, Smart Speakers are tantalizingly bigger among those most likely to play the Nielsen game.

When we started watching Smart Speakers, the key placements reported by respondents – at similar numbers – were the living room and the bedroom. But as penetration continues to rise, it’s the bedroom that appears to be the victor, now with a near-majority of placements. Let that soak in for a moment: a listening device back in the bedroom. As clock radios become quaint antiques and smartphones wake most people, here’s a speaker back in the bedroom. An opportunity for listeners to escape the day-in/day-out of Today and GMA and listen to radio morning shows while they get ready for work/school while they’re still at home.

Listeners need to be reminded that they can listen to your station on their Smart Speaker – and radio stations are uniquely positioned to describe for listeners exactly how to access the station on their device. It’s imperative that your stream is encoded so that these new quarter hours are tracked. And it’s critical that your stream sounds great. But as these devices become mainstream, this is an opportunity too big to ignore.

We’re finalizing the second episode of our fall webinar series to launch just after Labor Day. The deep dive in this new installment is into contesting. We’ll share fresh insights on national vs. local contests – and how to optimize positioning no matter which side of that fray you find yourself. We’ll review best prizes from past studies and share new data on contest appointment times. We looked at participation preference for every hour 6 AM – 7 PM and we’ll show the data broken out by every music format and demo.

We’ll look at the latest on the battle with streaming pureplays and which platform is trying to replace radio as the leader for new music discovery. We’ll also crack open the NuVoodoo digital playbook and look at the latest tools and reveal some of the digital “secret sauce” from our marketing department. Register for episode two, Fall Contest Essentials at