Employee Engagement

Without a daily commute, a fair amount of podcast-listening time has been lost. However, recent research shows that despite an initial dip, lockdown podcast listening has increased to 15%, with more people than ever choosing podcasts over radio and music. Without the socialising aspects of an office, more people are listening to podcasts while working from home to fill in the gap and give themselves a productive boost.

To find out what the UK’s podcast habits look like, Instant Offices, Coworking Specialists, have investigated the most popular podcasts that Brits like to listen to the most during working from home.  As Brits found ways to integrate podcasts into their new daily habits, the average time spent listening to podcasts increased 30 minutes around 15% between the first and second halves of 2020. This suggests that instead of listening to podcasts while commuting, UK workers are finding ways to listen to their favourite podcasts during business hours.

In total, 15.5 million Brits listened to a podcast in 2020, and recent figures suggest two thirds of podcast subscribers (10 million) are listening to a podcast every week.

The Best Professional Development Podcasts

Here are the top 10 most popular inspirational podcasts according to Apple Podcasts reviews and ratings:

Podcast Reviews Stars
The Tim Ferriss Show 13,500 4.5
How to Fail with Elizabeth Day 6,300 4.8
The EntreLeadership Podcast 2,800 4.6
The James Altucher Show 2,200 4.6
How I Built This with Guy Raz 1,600 4.8
Lead to Win 1,300 4.9
Manager Tools 1,100 4.6
Ctrl Alt Delete 855 4.5
How to be awesome at your job 815 4.5
The School of Greatness With Lewis Howes 730 4.7

Most Popular Podcast Genres in the UK

Within YouGov’s complete list of the UK’s top podcasts, the following genres appear most regularly:

  1. Comedy — 24% of the UK’s most popular podcasts
  2. Sports — 12% of the UK’s most popular podcasts
  3. News & Current Affairs — 9% of the UK’s most popular podcasts

Some Brits are even getting their True Crime fix while working from home. True Crime makes up 6% of the nation’s favourite podcasts.

Top Branded Podcasts

Here are the top 10 most popular branded podcasts according to Apple Podcasts reviews and ratings:

Podcast Company Reviews Rating Genre Company Industry
Inside Trader Joe’s Trader Joe’s 3700 4.5 Food Food
The Message General Electric 3,200 4.5 Science Fiction Tech
Casting  Call Squarespace 336 4.5 Personal Journals Business
Shopify Masters Shopify 310 5 Entrepreneurship eCommerce
Open for Business eBay 218 4.4 Business eCommerce
The Secret to Victory Gatorade 196 4.8 Sports Food & Drink
Wireframe Adobe 133 4.3 Design Design
Invisible Forces Jefferies 115 5 Investing Finance
Flipping the Game Reebok 97 4.9 Fashion & Beauty Fashion
The Endless Thread Reddit 62 4.5 Technology Social Media

John Williams, Chief Marketing Officer at The Instant Group has commented,  “Although our work routines have changed and we no longer have commutes, our research shows podcast listening continues to see the year on year increase of previous years.”

“While some worry about the impact this may have on productivity, many employees find podcasts to be a welcome respite from having had less social interaction during the lockdown period. According to YouGov, 47% would rather be back in the office in some capacity, 67% say coronavirus has had a negative impact on their mental health and 15% are lonely while working from home. Many companies, including Instant Offices, have invested in providing employees with free podcasts to support them with issues like stress, wellness and health during this time.”

Additionally, professional development podcasts provide inspiration and motivation to those looking to enhance their careers and give their workflow a boost. Listening to podcasts has been shown to stimulate the brain, release feel-good chemicals and give productivity a boost.

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