Pandora Launches Interactive Voice Ads Into Beta Testing

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The new voice ad format, where users verbally respond to advertiser prompts, is aiming to facilitate new forms of connection and engagement between advertisers and their listeners.

The takeaways:

  • The world’s second-largest music streaming service first introduced the format for testing in December with Doritos, Ashley HomeStores, Unilever, Wendy’s, Turner Broadcasting, Comcast and Nestlé.
  • The data point to an overall positive reception, especially given that listeners usually don’t like hearing ads at all.
  • The company found that consumers preferred being able to interact with adverts hands-free when content was relevant and useful.
By the numbers:Pandora survey of 512 users who tested the format was conducted in December 2019:
  • 72% reported that voice ads were easy to engage with.
  • 71% of listeners responded they were more likely to remember ads that were engaging and funny.
  • 47% of users said they either liked or loved the concept of responding with their voice, and 30% felt neutral.
Not so fast: Pandora warns that more testing needs to be done in order to better understand what kind of ads users best respond to. Their early alpha testing showed that ads with the highest engagement were entertaining, funny, or used a recognizable brand voice.

The roll-up: Voice ads could present exciting opportunities for listeners to engage with brands and products in new ways. Results from continued testing will help the industry assess where voice ads could fit within advertisers marketing strategies, and budgets.

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