back to blog

Pandora: Modern-Day Mix Tape and Digital Advertising Opportunity

If you’re a certain age, or older, you’ll remember what I remember. The DJ would announce “Coming up after this break, Dexy’s Midnight Runners!” You’d hustle and find a blank tape, put it into the tape deck, get ready with your fingers on the REC and PLAY buttons, and hope that you got the song you wanted recorded. It wasn’t an easy process, but it didn’t compare to making a mix tape for that special someone – that involved pulling out records, tapes, or CDs, figuring out whether the music would be under or over 45 minutes (for you kids, that’s the typical length of one side of a cassette), finding those special songs, and painstakingly assembling the tape for someone’s listening pleasure. Cassette TapeFast forward 25 years to 2012. My kids live in a world where every song they hear can be accessible immediately via YouTube (effectively curating their lives), purchased immediately on iTunes or another similar service, or utilized to create a station or mix with similar likes in Pandora. For music fans with eclectic tastes, there’s nothing quite like Pandora. For those who aren’t familiar, Pandora allows you to build stations based on specific artists, and refines your music tastes based on your reactions to specific songs (is it a thumb’s-up, or thumb’s-down?). You can then turn the stations you’ve created into a QuickMix, meaning that I can create something traditional radio just can’t: a cross-format mess which is as likely to play Eric Church, Brad Paisley, the Who, or Elvis Costello. If I don’t like something, I’m not stuck listening to it – I’ve got the power to fast-forward through a song and move on. Sure, Pandora has its flaws – it doesn’t recognize that the live versions of songs aren’t the same as the studio versions, and can subject you to the same song you already vetoed in a variety of less marvelous ways. But it can also introduce you to other artists you’ve never thought of, or never taken the time for. I’m embarrassed I never had taken the time to listen to the Black Keys before a year and a half ago, and am shocked that I’d never heard of Nick Drake. It’s not surprising, then, that Pandora has seen a significant increase in its number of users, and its users are now using Pandora both on their laptops as well as on mobile devices. The Los Angeles Times reports that the number of users who were “active listeners” (used Pandora more than once in the last 30 days) was up 59% year on year. The average user’s time on Pandora also increased about 10% to 19.6 hours per month. So how does this impact your media planning?
Ready to get started?

It seems like you're ready to do more. This is why we have to meet.