After a pilot of its new “Sponsored Listening” advertisements last year, streaming music service Pandora Radio announced today that it’s rolling out the feature to all advertisers and listeners in its mobile apps. The feature rewards users with an hour of ad-free, uninterrupted listening as long as they first interact with an ad for at least 15 seconds.

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Pandora says listeners and advertisers responded positively to the pilot program with a 12 percent increase in brand awareness and a 30 percent increase in purchase intent, so now the company is rolling out the feature as a core part of its advertising efforts and to all of its approximately 80 million users. Some of its users that opt for a paid “Pandora One” subscription, however, already get ad-free listening as a perk. 

The company has been experimenting with video ads and slideshows, but it will also offer a new 360-degree interactive product view and other rich media ads for the full roll out. One advertiser that has been taking advantage of the new 360-degree view ad in Pandora is Land Rover (pictured above):

“The Sponsored Listening offering is unique, and we jumped at the opportunity to align with this attention-based service during the launch of the new Discovery Sport,” said Kim Kyaw, digital marketing and social media manager at Land Rover North America. “Pandora’s Sponsored Listening product allowed consumers to engage with the vehicle – by watching a video or by interacting with a 360 degree unit – for at least 15 seconds. Opportunities to engage with our consumers around new vehicle launches within premium listening environments are difficult to find.”

Pandora says other companies are already signed-up as the new ads move out of beta, some of which include Corona Extra, Gatorade, truTV and Yuengling.

It doesn’t look like the Pandora app will need an update to start displaying the new ads, so you can expect to see them appear in the Pandora Radio app for iPhone and iPad soon if they haven’t already reached you as part of the pilot.

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