Internet Marketing

How Much Does it Cost to Advertise on Pandora?

Pandora is a free online music streaming service that allows users to create custom radio stations. Users start by entering a favorite genre, song, artist, or comedian, and the Pandora system will create a personalized listing of tracks to listen to. Users can rate songs and tracks with a thumbs-up or thumbs down, ensuring they get more of the content they want.

In 2015, Pandora had 250 million registered users, with about 81.5 million active users. Users have the option of choosing a paid subscription service, which promises to be ad-free, or listening to ads in between content. For users of the free accounts, ads also appear on the screen. Only about 30% of Pandora's users were using the paid service in 2015, meaning that as a marketer, the site presents a significant opportunity to reach new customers.

If you’re considering running ads on the platform, though, you likely have one key question: How much does it cost?

Keep reading to learn more about the advertising options on Pandora, as well as how much you should expect to pay for them.

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How much does it cost to advertise on Pandora?

The cost of advertising on Pandora varies, depending on the type of advertising you choose. Visual ads (which appear seven times per hour for most users) average $5-7 when calculated by CPM, or cost per milli. This means that for every thousand people Pandora shows your ad, you’ll be charged that amount.

Video ads, on the other hand, have an average CPM of $15-25, and audio ads average $8-12, with rates being lower for mobile ads.

Within these three types of ads, there are several subtypes to choose from.

1) Genre station sponsorship

This feature is a type of “takeover” of a station. Station users tuning into the station will see a banner ad for the company, and web users will see a skin or background featuring the advertiser's product or service. This ad will include audio advertising as well.

2) Animated overlay

These large-screen takeovers can include animation as well as images.

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3) Autoplay video

This video will automatically start to play when users change stations or skip a song. The video will play automatically, with no background distractions.

4) Skins and billboards

Skins and billboards appear in the background when users are listening to songs or interacting with Pandora. These bright and colorful images contain text as well as pictures. Some can include a call to action.

5) Custom stations

If you choose to create your own station, you have lots of freedom to develop your own content. You can include ads, useful content, spoken word content, music, and anything else you need to develop your brand.

Custom stations can be a great way to feature podcasts, playlists, and useful or fun information and content for potential customers. If listeners like what they hear, they can click to your company’s site to learn more.

6) Mix tape

Advertisers and businesses can submit a mix tape of songs or can have users submit their songs to a mix tape. The content will reflect the brand of the company and an image or logo and the company name will appear while the mix tape is playing, providing an added advertising opportunity.

7) Welcome interstitial

Advertisers can buy a full screen ad for mobile devices through this program. The ad loads when users launch their Pandora app from their android device or iPhone

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8) Pandora One trial sponsorship

In this sponsorship deal, companies get to offer their potential clients a one week free trial of Pandora One. When users log into their one-week trial, they see ads for the company sponsoring the trial.

9) Sponsored listening

This is a unique “ad free” type of advertising. A business will sponsor an ad-free hour of listening for a user. The user, in exchange for getting an hour of free listening with no ad interruptions, will have to watch a video or an ad from the sponsor before the free hour begins.

This means the user will only see one ad and be focused on one marketing message within the hour, potentially making the advertising more effective. If you want to place your ad with less competition from other companies, this might be the right option for you.

10) Full-fledged campaigns

Pandora’s Video Everywhere, Display Everywhere, or Audio Everywhere campaigns allows companies to advertise their business across all platforms—including desktops, phones, and mobile devices—in one campaign.

The cost of advertising on Pandora can vary widely, depending on how aggressive the campaign you want to launch, and the specific features you want to see. In addition, the amount of users and viewers your campaign gets will affect the total cost of your campaign. You can advertise on Pandora for a few hundred dollars or spend hundreds of thousands of dollars for an intricate campaign to reach a huge audience.

Deciding on advertising options, creating a budget, and most importantly, creating a campaign designed to get results and pay for itself is a considerable undertaking. Simply paying tens of thousands of dollars with a Pandora campaign is certainly possible—but will it get you a comparable number in new leads and sales?

In order to truly make the most of your Pandora experience, no matter how much you decide to spend on advertising, it's important to ensure you’re targeting the right audience. Is Pandora the right audience for you? Can you capitalize on your advertising opportunities with quality written, video, or audio content to grab readers and make some follow through? Do you have goals for your campaign and a way to track results?

Want to advertise on Pandora?

Considering its large user base, advertising on Pandora can be a great way to reach new customers. But to make the most of your campaigns, you’ll need to carefully select the right ad types for your business and adjust your targeting and content as you monitor the results.

If you’re considering advertising on Pandora, WebpageFX can help. Our team of Internet marketers has experience running successful campaigns on a variety of online channels, and we’ll do the same for you. Contact us today to speak with a strategist!

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