Podcasts, audiobooks and, of course, audio tours are on the rise. In 2020, isolation, social distancing and cancelled events made even more people turn to audio – and podcast listening is increasing the most.
This means that more than 100 million Americans listen to at least one podcast each month. In 2020, for the first time, a larger percentage of Americans listened to podcasts weekly than attended church or other religious services on a weekly basis.
In 2019, audiobook sales in the UK increased by 43 percent. In the US, listeners aged 18 and older increased their audiobook consumption from 6.8 books a year 2019 to 8.1 in 2020. The most popular audiobook genre in the US continues to be mysteries and thrillers.
In Sweden, StoryTourist’s home turf, 68 percent of the population listen to podcasts regularly, an increase by 13 percent in 2020. Among students, a staggering 83 percent are regular consumers. Almost haft of the 26-55-year-olds in Sweden listen to audiobooks.
Why are audiobooks becoming big business? Already before the pandemic, audiobooks were on the rise. Time is certainly one aspect, more than half of UK audiobook listeners, 57 percent, say they have too little time to read. Others found listening a more immersive and intimate experience than reading.
At StoryTourist, we create self-guided audio tours based on famous works of fiction. In our tour library, there are classics like Doctor Glas, The Little Mermaid, Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and a Sherlock Homes adventure, but also a modern Wallander crime story based on The Death of the Photographer. The audio tours let you experience the places where the stories take place. Both a guide and a game, they offer an immersive and interactive experience that brings the story to life. Check out all our tours here.