Pandora Invades Cars With User Profiles In Hand
(UPDATED) Early next year, Ford will be shipping Feista cars that are capable of running Pandora. Drivers will be able to call out their favorite radio station by name. The company is looking to gain a foothold in the drive-time radio market and attract bigger, more lucrative advertising opportunities. Rather than being hammered with advertising for life insurance companies and bars trying to lure them into happy hour, listeners might be greeted with ads from Miller Light or Hallmark. The difference is that the beer companies will actually be hitting their "of-age" market and Hallmark can target fathers on Father's Day. How?
Since Pandora has information on their users such as age, gender, and zip code - as well as musical taste - they are capable of reaching audiences with relevant ads. Because of this, DeVry and Whole Foods are looking to get onboard with Pandora. If successful, Pandora has the potential to bring ads to commuters that might be interested in hearing them. As opposed to the traditional radio model, where almost no one wants to hear the ads; they change the station.
However, there are a number of barriers in the way before Pandora will be able to challenge radio in a substantial way. They also aren't the only net radio company in the space. Though it may be a decade before I'm able to call out my favorite stations in any car that I drive; it will be interesting to see how this unfolds.
Can we get government mandated Pandora receivers in cars?