The Insights People


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Kids Insights recently issued their latest Leisure Measure report that focuses on the offline lives of kids, from how they spend their time, to what they enjoy doing and what they are currently consuming. The report is based on the results of surveying 5,000 British children aged 3-18 between April and June 2019, though it also utilises data collected since May 2017. 

Our latest research shows how audiobooks have doubled in popularity over the last 12 months, with 16% of children now enjoying this format.

Graph. 1 Which of the following do you read? (Ages 3-18)

With the modern accelerated pace of life, audiobooks are becoming an increasingly relevant way to get to know the best examples of literature. It is not surprising that the catalogue of recorded books is constantly expanding: the most anticipated new items almost always come out in two formats at once – for reading and for listening.

The children most likely to say they enjoy audiobooks are those between the ages of 7 and 13, skewed towards girls (54% to 46%). This is very similar to the gender split seen amongst fans of paperbacks: 57% girls / 43% boys. Kids are likely to enjoy listening to audiobooks for several reasons. 

Firstly, audiobooks give them the ability to do other things while listening to their favourite titles. To enjoy audiobooks, they don’t need to look for good lighting, be distracted from other activities, or carry piles of heavy books everywhere. 

There is also the ‘snackable’ quality of audio books, allowing kids to switch on and off as and when they please, including whilst on the go. According to our data, 34% of kids listen to audiobooks for just 15 minutes per week, suggesting that perhaps this style of reading appeals to those kids who would not normally read, but are now finding a route into books that suits them better. 

In correlation, we’re seeing audiobooks increase in popularity alongside access to smart speakers – but these aren’t the only platform for listening to books. For example, Tonies are an innovation in this area.These are figurines of characters like the Gruffalo or Rapunzel, which, when placed on top of a Toniebox, plays a recording of the related story aloud to the child without the need for an internet connection. We expect to see these impacting on the market over the next few months. Given current developments, 2020 could see interactive audiobooks, supported by systems such as Alexa, become a major trend.

Our research and strategy team work with clients from a variety of industries, using data from surveying 21,300 kids across the UK each year. The breadth and depth of information collected allow us to predict more major trends set to occur, particularly as more brands jump on board with new technology.

 To download a complimentary Kids Insights report click below:


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