Internet radio appeals to more people now than ever. One of the biggest players is Pandora with a 100% increase of time listeners spent on the service last year. Consumers made their choice. But still Pandora does not generate revenues – at least not from listeners paying for ad-free premium accounts. Which puts even more pressure back onto advertising, and more invasive formats like in-stream spots, which in return proved to be the K.O. criteria for listeners to switch to ad-free services again.
But in-stream audio ads seem to be a major growth area. “Prior to 2011, Pandora allocated less than one minute of audio advertising inventory per listening hour,” analysts at Research and Markets shared with Digital Music News. “[Yet] audio inventory expansion to 6.2 billion avails per month in 2012 is projected, driven in part by Pandora’s increasing focus on the in-stream audio format.”
Listeners want online radio, ad-free online radio, FREE ad-free online radio – which is impossible.