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2022 Audie Awards® Entry Deadline: Oct. 7;
New Research On 'Audiobook Engagers'
September 23, 2021

(VOXtra) - The $1.3 billion audiobook industry (2020 sales data) has come a long way in the past two-plus decades - as have the Audie Awards®, the Audio Publishers Association's (APA) annual competition that is nearing the close of entries for it's 26th year of recognizing distinction in all facets of audiobook and spoken word entertainment - including Best Male and Female Narrators, and Audiobook of the Year.

The final submission deadline for entries in the 2022 Audie Awards competition is October 7. Entries in 25 categories may be submitted by audiobook publishers, licensees / distributors, authors and rights-holding producers of audiobooks that were released for the first time for sale in the U.S. during the period from November 1, 2020 to October 31, 2021.

Yet even non-rights holders may submit, with proof of permission from the rights holder. And an audiobook need not be based on a printed book.

Finalists will be announced in February 2022, and the winners will be named and honored at the elegant Audies Gala being planned for March 2022 in New York City. (See 2021 AudiesGala.)


The $1.3 billion sales figure cited above for 2020 reflects nine consecutive years of double-digit audiobook sales growth, reports APA Executive Director Michele Cobb.

And in a recent APA webinar, findings about "audiobook engagers" - or, listeners - were shared by Dr. Rachel Noorda and Dr. Kathi Inman Berens, the lead researchers and authors of Immersive Media & Books 2020, published earlier this year by the Panorama Project.

Overall, Berens noted, "Audiobook engagers are significantly more active across all book formats, and buy more books than our general survey population.

"Opportunities abound for print book publishers to produce more audiobooks, and for libraries to expand their collections of audiobooks," she said.

Other significant findings reported in the APA webinar include:
  • 43.6% of the general survey population engage with audiobooks and 49.6% of those who engage with audiobooks buy the same book in multiple formats.
  • 67.9% of those who engage with audiobooks are also avid book engagers (4+ per month). This compares to 53% of the general survey population.
  • Audiobook engagers are younger than the general survey population, with 41.5% of Millennials and 43% of Gen X engaging with audiobooks.
  • Greater percentages of people of color (Black 19.6%, Latinx 16.4%) engaged with audiobooks compared to the general survey population.
  • Audiobook engagers rely heavily upon word-of-mouth for book discovery, with 21.6% citing friends, 13.6% family, and 10.1% social media. 
  • 81.4% of audiobook engagers have a library card compared to 75.8% of the general survey population.
  • Favored genres of audio enthusiasts for adult fiction are Mystery, Classics, Fantasy, Romance, and Thriller. For adult nonfiction, preferred genres for audio enthusiasts are History, Biographies and Autobiographies, Body/Mind/Spirit, Spirituality, and Business. Audio enthusiasts engage with YA (fiction and nonfiction) in all genre categories at higher rates than the general survey population.
For more about the APA, it's programs and how to join, visit:

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