Bob Garfield

What marketers need to know about in-car ads

The future of streaming radio is in the car. Here's how Pandora is starting to market to consumers during their daily commutes -- and how you can get in the game.

Connected cars are making room for streaming audio services

As vehicles evolve and become more intelligent and connected, the opportunity for marketers to explore in-car ads is exploding. This year, Pandora plans on making in-car streaming ads a reality. On January 6, the company announced that its in-car service will allow 15- to 30-second audio ads to be aired in vehicles that are equipped with the Pandora app. Almost 130 brands have already partnered with the streaming music service to explore this exciting new in-car ad world.

Enabling native app downloads and sponsorships

Connected cars are making our vehicles essentially touch screen devices. Soon, all car dashboards will have touchscreens that utilize a majority of the functions that we enjoy on our tablets and smartphones, including app downloads. For Pandora, this exists as a native application in cars with exclusive six-month sponsorships with BP, State Farm, Ford Motor Co., Taco Bell, and Bank of America. Native Pandora integration is already available on 130 vehicles and more than 270 aftermarket audio devices. More than 4 million unique users have used the app.

How to get started: Partnerships, partnerships, partnerships.

Getting in on this action is an exciting prospect for many brands, as an in-car ad experience is fairly simple and creates much less uncertainty than display or a commercial. People generally spend a great deal of time in their cars and tend to limit their listening pleasure to one channel. Streaming in-car ads could be an extremely effective way to capitalize on the loyalty of listeners on streaming services while providing a branded message. So how can you get started? Partnerships. Explore this market and make connections. Make plans to be one of the first brands in this space. You may help define it.

iMedia speaks to John Trimble, CRO of Pandora, about what marketers really need to know about the in-car ads Pandora is starting to revolutionize.

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