18 Groovy Canadian & Global Podcast Statistics

Gone are the days when listening to an audio program was confined to a radio device. Nowadays, innovations in technology allow you to listen to one on the go, and the birth of podcasts made it possible.

The latest podcast statistics show that Canadians currently devote three and a half hours to listening to podcasts every week.

Let’s delve deep into the world of podcasts and understand their impact on the lives of Canadians and the rest of the world in general.

Girl listening to the radio on a headphones

Amazing Podcasts Statistics (Editor’s Choice)

  • In 2021, there was a 1% increase in the number of Canadian podcast listeners compared to 2020.
  • 48% of Canadian podcast listeners consume podcasts produced by Canadians.
  • Podcast statistics for Canada show 53% of podcast listeners are women.
  • One-quarter of people aged 50 and above prefer politics as a podcast genre.
  • A branded podcast leads to 89% higher awareness for businesses.
  • Smartphones are the preferred device of 65% of Canadians when listening to podcasts.
  • Celebrities on podcasts appeal to two in three Canadian podcast listeners.
  • Podcast listening has a global penetration rate of 18%.
  • 27% of Canadian podcast listeners consume three podcast episodes of podcasts each week.

Canadian Podcast Statistics for 2021

1. There was a 1% increase in the number of Canadian podcast listeners from 2020 to 2021.

(Source: Edison Research)

The share of monthly listeners in 2021 stood at 38% of Canadians aged 12 and over, and this is only a slight growth from the previous year. Even so, engagement remains strong. Around 76% of podcast listeners listen to all or most podcast episodes, with podcast listeners consuming an average of five podcasts every week.

2. 71% of Canadians aged 12 and above are monthly listeners, podcast statistics from Canada confirm.

(Source: Edison Research)

The percentage stood at 70% the year before. We can attribute the consistent reach of online audio in the last 18 months or so to the pandemic, which has disrupted people’s lives in significant ways. So, Canadians have turned to online audio and podcasts to spend their time during long periods of lockdowns and health restrictions. However, 86% of Canadians believe engaging in sports is worth the effort as well.

3. 48% of Canadian podcast listeners consume podcasts produced by Canadians.

(Source: Edison Research)

According to a survey of Canadian adults by Edison Research, nearly half of all podcast listeners tune in to Canadian-made podcasts. Most Canadians turn to family and friends for podcast recommendations, and they also seek suggestions within the podcast app itself, but also from social media. This comes as no shock given how Canadians spend an average of 138 minutes a week on social media.

a person sitting in a radio station office

4. 53% of Canadian podcast listeners are women, podcast statistics reveal. (Source: Nlogic, Edison Research)

Given that women make up 50.4% of Canada’s population, it’s clear that women a slightly more avid podcast listeners than men. Interestingly, the demographics differ when it comes to their preferred podcast genre. Perhaps somewhat unexpectedly, around two-thirds of women prefer true crime podcasts. In contrast, men tend to listen to politics.

5. One-quarter of Canadians aged 50 and above prefer podcasts that talk about politics.

(Source: Nlogic)

According to podcast statistics for Canada, older people have a clear preference for politics when it comes to podcast genres, with almost one in four respondents saying so. Meanwhile, the youngest age group picks comedy and history, with 55% preferring comedy and 53% picking history. The differences in their choices seem to be influenced by their age and interests.

6. 65% of Canadian podcast listeners prefer to use smartphones or other mobile devices when listening to podcasts.

(Source: Edison Research)

Smartphones are the device of choice of nearly two-thirds of Canadians when they listen to podcasts. This solidifies one of the primary appeals of podcasts, as their accessibility means that they can be consumed anytime and anywhere. And using a mobile device only enhances this feature. The remaining podcast listeners use computers.

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7. Two in three Canadian listeners are drawn to celebrities on podcasts.

(Source: Better Business Bureau)

Celebrities in podcasts appeal to many Canadian listeners. In fact, two-thirds of Canadians claimed they knew the host before listening to the podcast. This only demonstrates the power of famous personalities in drawing listeners in.

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8. According to podcast statistics for Canada, a branded podcast leads to 89% higher awareness for businesses. 

(Source: Better Business Bureau)

Many businesses have discovered the benefits of creating branded podcasts, and this move is proving widely effective. A report commissioned by the Better Business Bureau found that businesses producing their own branded podcast have enjoyed significantly higher awareness. They also enjoyed 24% higher brand favorability and 16% higher engagement.

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Global Podcast Statistics

Now that we have a clear idea of the podcast scene in the Great White North, let’s see how it compares with the rest of the world.

9. The global penetration rate of podcast listening is around 18%.

(Source: Statista)

Podcasts have been enjoying worldwide popularity in the last decade. This is reflected in the global number of podcast listeners, which reached a record 485 million, according to podcast statistics for 2020.

Curiously, podcast listening seems to decrease with age.

Here’s the scoop:

Younger people tend to listen to podcasts more, with 44% of respondents aged 26 to 35 admitting to listening to podcasts, compared to only 22% of those aged 56 and over.

10. 27% of Canadian podcast listeners consume three episodes in a week.

(Source: Statista)

People in different countries tend to approach podcasts in their unique ways. In the US, 7% of listeners consume podcasts once a day or more. In Germany, however, 80% of respondents are said they don’t listen to any podcasts. In Argentina, Millennials make up the highest share of podcast consumers.

11. 78% of Americans were aware of podcasting in 2020.

(Source: Statista)

In 2006, the percentage of adult Americans who were aware of podcasts was just around 22%. A decade and a half later, this figure had skyrocketed to nearly eight in ten, which demonstrates the growing popularity of podcasts in the country. The number of podcast listeners in the US is projected to go beyond 160 million by 2023, showing an increase of 20 million each year.

12. Stitcher, a streaming service focusing on podcasts, made a staggering US$72.55 million in 2019.

(Sources: Statista, Statista)

Several podcast streaming services have made huge revenues over the last few years, and Stitcher is a brilliant example. But the most popular audio podcasts publishers are IHeartRadio, with a mind-blowing 226 million unique streams and downloads, and NPR, with over 200 million downloads. The latter draws in more than 20 million listeners every month, the podcast download numbers reveal.

Next, we’ll head across the pond:

13. There are around 15 million podcast listeners in the UK.

(Source: Statista, Statista, Statista)

Podcasts are becoming more and more popular in European countries. The UK has a total of 15.61 million listeners. And in 2019, the podcast audience in Italy reached 12.1 million.

What’s more:

About 32% of French respondents claimed to enjoy podcasts on a few occasions, while 11% said they enjoy listening to them on a regular basis.


14. In April 2021, 58% of South Koreans claimed to have listened to any podcast in the past month. 

(Source: Podcast Insights)

South Korea has the highest percentage of podcast listeners in the world. In fact, 58% of South Koreans admitted to listening to a podcast in the past month. Spain comes next with 40%, and Sweden follows closely with 36%. Canada and France recorded 28%, while Japan had 26%.

Sports Podcast Statistics

podcast going live

15. About 32% of basketball fans in the US are likely to listen to podcasts at least once a week.

(Source: YouGov Sport)

Sports podcast programs have become increasingly popular recently. In the US, 32% of basketball fans will more likely listen to podcasts at least once a week compared to fans of other major sports.

On the other hand:

28% of baseball fans and 27% of hockey fans will do the same. In the UK, 23% of tennis fans listen to a podcast once a week, followed by soccer fans at 21%. Soccer fans in France make up the largest percentage of those who will likely listen to a podcast once a week at 24%.

16. Sports make up just around 8% of the podcast ad revenue share in the United States.

(Source: SportsPro)

In the US, sports as a podcast genre only get to take 8% of the ad revenue share or US$56.6 million. In March 2020, only 7% of respondents aged 30 to 44 tuned in to sports-related podcasts.

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Most Listened to Podcasts

17. The most popular podcast is The Joe Rogan Experience, with the episode featuring Elon Musk as a guest hitting 47.1 million views.

(Source: JRE Library)

When it comes to the most popular podcasts, The Joe Rogan Experience consistently ranks on top of the podcast charts, making it one of the most successful podcasts in the world.

[tweet id="1359936599484727297" align="center"]

So far, the show has produced a total of 1,904 episodes in the last 11 years.

And that’s not all:

According to Spotify statistics, users spent 14.9 million total hours listening to the show the first month JRE became available on the platform. So, it’s fair to say that The Joe Rogan Experience is the number 1 podcast in the world.

18. Canadians usually listen to opinion/commentary content, with the genre accounting for 34% of podcast listeners. 

(Source: Statista, Better Business Bureau)

The most popular podcasts of all time for Canadians are in the opinion/commentary niche, making up 34% of the podcast listener share. Meanwhile, 26% of Canadians listen to the news and current events podcasts, and true crime ranks as the sixth-most popular genre.

Final Thoughts

Podcasts are becoming a staple in many Canadian households while also gaining popularity all over the world. The pandemic contributed to this trend, with more and more people tuning in to podcasts to pass the time amid the frequent lockdowns.

It also helps that podcasts are easily accessible on any device. So, people can listen while in the car, on the commute, or in the comfort of their own homes.

The latest podcast statistics are clear:

We can only expect podcasting to grow even bigger in the coming years as more users tune in on a regular basis.

Happy listening!


How do you find out how many listeners a podcast has?

There are several ways to find out how many listeners a podcast has, depending on what metric you are aiming for. If you want to know a podcast’s estimated number of regular listeners, you may take a look at the subscriber stats.

It’s important to note, however, that access to podcast analytics may vary from one app to another. Popular podcast services like iTunes, Spotify, and Google Play allow you to get this number. On the other hand, if you want to determine the total number of times a podcast was played, looking at the number of times people hit the “Play” button can give you an idea.

How many people listened to podcasts in 2020?

Around 71% of Canadians aged 12 and above have listened to an online audio program each month. This is a slight increase from 2020’s stats, which showed 70%.

What are the podcast demographics?

In 2020, women accounted for 53% of Canadian podcast listeners. When looking at the genre they usually listen to, women tend to be more interested in true crime, while men prefer politics. Older people’s interest also lies in politics, while the youngest listeners gravitate towards comedy and history.

How much do podcasts make?

Creating and producing podcasts can present a significant revenue stream to those who are interested. You can earn money from podcasts in various ways, including affiliate marketing, sponsorship and advertising, and crowdfunding and donations, among others. Most podcasts earn through advertisements.

To give you an idea, podcast statistics reveal advertising rates range from US$18 to US$50 on average. Your earnings will depend on the number of ads in your podcast, which is usually two to three per episode. In a month, you can probably earn US$1,200 from ads alone.


Michelle has immersed herself in the writing world fueled with a curious mind and a fierce love of learning for more than 8 years. Her passion lies in content marketing, digital technology, and current events. She has always such a joy to sift through a trove of information and organize it in a way that helps readers navigate the ever-changing landscape of an increasingly digital and data-driven age. I’m a firm believer in the saying that information is power, and I seek to put it into good use. We learn together along the way, one step at a time.

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