023 – The Future of Audiobooks and Podcasting

Here are the show notes for the most recent episode of the Christian Publishing Show.

You can listen to this episode here.


In this episode of the Christian Publishing Show, Thomas Umstattd shares a special podcast version of the talk he gave at the 2019 ECPA Leadership Summit, an industry event where the leaders of Christian publishing houses gather to talk about trends and the future of the industry.

Thomas was asked to talk about the trends regarding audiobooks and podcasts. No recordings of the event are made so this is a special encore session of the talk.

There is no transcript but we do have links to the recommended gear, as well as the statistics that were passed out as a handout.

Recommended Gear

Many of the above links are affiliate links. Also, the prices often fluctuate around the price listed.

Podcast Statistics

Podcast listeners are:

  • affluent. 45% of monthly podcast listeners have a household income of over $75K – vs 35% for the US population.
  • educated. 27% of US podcast listeners have a 4-year college degree – vs 19% for the US population.
  • influential. 94% of podcast listeners are active on social media – vs 81% for the US population.

Source: Edison Research

Podcast listening is
51% (144 million) of
Americans have listened to a podcast.

Source: Edison Research

There are a lot of Christian
. The iTunes category
“Religion & Spirituality: Christian” has more podcasts than all other

Source: Pacific Content

Audiobook Statistics

  • Smart speakers are growing
    in popularity for audiobook listening.
    24% of audiobook listeners
    say they have listened on a smart speaker.
  • Millennials love audiobooks. Nearly half (48%) of frequent audiobook listeners are under 35.
  • Podcast listeners are
    audiobook super readers.
    Listeners of both podcasts
    and audiobooks listened to twice as many audiobooks as non-podcast consumers.
  • Fiction is more popular than
    non-fiction in audiobooks.
    70.6% of audiobook sales
    are fiction.
  • Digital audiobooks have
    replaced CDs as the dominant format.
    Only 5.8% of audiobook unit
    sales were on CD in 2017, down from 27.8% in 2013.

Source: Audiobook Publishers Association

Source: Audiobook Publishers Association

Source: Audiobook Publishers Association


The post 023 – The Future of Audiobooks and Podcasting appeared first on Christian Publishing Show.

2 Responses to 023 – The Future of Audiobooks and Podcasting

  1. Avatar
    Nicola May 6, 2019 at 7:44 pm #

    I became an audiobook producer in November and have already narrated 8 books. I’m having the time of my life! Thank you for your interesting podcast and for promoting this old new way of receiving content!
    I am especially interested in the smart speaker method of delivery. Thank you for bringing this to my attention.

  2. Avatar
    Heather Blanton May 19, 2019 at 1:50 pm #

    Great podcast. Thanks for pointing out our message isn’t loved by the world and we need to get it out there in places where we can’t be shut down. I think Christian authors need to be thinking about that more.

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