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Study Says Millennials Indifferent About AM

Surprisingly it’s the talk, not so much the static, turning off 13 to 34s, according to Mark Kassof & Co.

Many Millennials queried by audience research firm Mark Kassof & Co. feel indifferent about AM, much preferring FM.

According to the study, asked how they feel about AM radio, 30% of respondents age 13 to 34 neither liked nor disliked AM, followed by 27% who said they liked it. Seventeen percent said they disliked AM, 9% said they hated it and 8% said they loved it.

Positive feelings for AM skew male, the opposite of FM’s skew, according to the research. Forty-two percent of males either like (31%) or love (11%) AM, while only 29% of females do. Broken out by age groups, the youngest and oldest Millennials share pretty much the identical view of AM.

When asked why they disliked or hate AM, 32% said the programming was all talk, 26% said it was boring and 19% said AM has static or sounds “fuzzy.” Seventeen percent said AM has “nothing I’m interested in” and 8% said it’s “old/outdated.”

Kassof says the bottom line is AM’s prognosis among Millennials is, “unsurprisingly, not encouraging.” However, the news isn’t all bad, it notes, because only around a fourth of Millennials dislikeAM. In addition, the biggest reasons for their dislike isn’t about the audio quality of AM; that’s only the number three reason.

The two larger reasons relate to the programming available on AM, according to Kassof, such as talk shows they’re not interested in. “This does not suggest that talk AMs should drop the format. But it does suggest other AMs might have an opportunity to deliver unique programming listeners can’t get anywhere else, even programming targeted to Millennials,” according to Kassof.

The survey was based on just over 300 interviews.