With 2021 now in the history books, iHeartMedia says it saw monthly downloads on the iHeartPodcast Network increase 90% last year to 337 million shows listened to during the past 12 months. And its monthly reach grew 49% to 32 million listeners in the U.S.
“During that time, iHeartRadio has seen multicultural audiences flourish to new highs, as listenership among Black, Hispanic and other diverse audiences has all significantly grown,” it says in a blog post.
The company credits the gains to new networks and partnerships, including with The Black Effect, My Cultura, Seneca Women, and Will Ferrell’s Big Money Players networks.
In the year-end tally, iHeart also says some categories are showing exponential increases in downloads. On iHeartRadio, shows in the Business category had a 133% increase in downloads during 2021. Entertainment podcast downloads increased 80% according to the company.
But other categories are showing big gains too, include news and politics (+25% listener growth), business (+9%), music (+8%), sports (+7%) and comedy (+7%).