US: What's the big attraction about video podcasts?
February 1st, 2024, Janice Fernandes

US: What's the big attraction about video podcasts?

Podcasts have become an integral part of modern media consumption, but apart from the traditional audio podcasts are consumers also interested in video versions? With data from a recent survey, we understand the video podcast consumption habits of US viewers. We also look at genres, and the reasons people choose video over audio podcasts.

When it comes to the preferred way of consuming podcasts around a third of overall respondents (33%) favor listening to audio podcasts. However, video podcasts are not far behind with 25% of overall respondents preferring it, with a split of 27% among males and 23% among females. The middle ground is occupied by those who choose based on content (27%) or context (15%).

Diving deeper into the world of video podcasts reveals the genres that capture audiences’ attention. News and current affairs lead the pack with 46% overall, and a notable gender difference - 52% of males and 39% of females. Health and wellness is the second most popular genre, but at a significantly lower rate (34%), with a slight female preference (37% vs. 31% of men). Educational content (33%), pop culture, and entertainment (32%) are also popular choices, resonating with both men and women.

True crime emerges as another popular genre, garnering the attention of 30% of video podcast enthusiasts. Data reveals that this genre attracts more female viewers (35%) than male (25%). Conversely, technology and science video podcasts lean towards a male audience, with 36% of men compared to 17% of women showing interest.

Unpacking the factors influencing the preference for video podcasts over audio yields intriguing insights. Visual appeal stands out as the primary reason, with 51% of respondents overall, maintaining a consistent balance between male (51%) and female (52%) respondents. For roughly a quarter of respondents, the allure lies in the variety of content (29%) and the ability to share specific moments on social media platforms (26%). Notably, the desire to engage without multitasking (29%) emerges as a significantly popular factor.

But are consumers watching entire episodes or just highlights?

Around two-fifths of respondents (39%) express a tendency to watch the entire video podcast episode. However, watching specific segments or highlights of a show holds interest for 23% of viewers, emphasizing a preference for more targeted content. Roughly a third of overall respondents (34%) suggest that the decision is content-dependent.

This nuanced breakdown underscores the need for content creators to strike a balance between crafting engaging full-length episodes and producing compelling highlights to cater to the diverse preferences within their audience.

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Methodology: YouGov Surveys: Serviced provides quick survey results from nationally representative or targeted audiences in multiple markets. This study was conducted online on January 23-25, 2024, with a nationally representative sample of 2,290 adults in the United States (aged 18+ years), using a questionnaire designed by YouGov. Data figures have been weighted by age, gender, education, social grade and region to be representative of all adults. Learn more about YouGov Surveys: Serviced.

Image: Getty Images