You're in a space the listener helped to create

If you’re running ads in audio streaming services like Pandora, Spotify, podcasts, etc., read the room. Tailor your message, offer, script, and production to the context.

A commercial in a listener’s headphones while listening to a finely tuned personal playlist feels a lot more intrusive than listening to the radio. You’re in a space the listener helped to create. Listeners are paying attention, not passive. It’s intimate, and you absolutely have to respect that. “Annoying” and “Clueless” just don’t work for credit union brands.

Keep it as short as possible (you can make a great impression in five seconds), and put the meat of your message right up front in case they skip (and yes, you should allow skipping). Match the audio levels, tone, sound effects, music and mood so you’re not dumping ANNOYING UNSKIPPABLE ANNOUNCER GUY at 200% VOLUME into someone’s “Chill Jams” playlist.

Use streaming yourself for a while before jumping in, and take note of the best and worst spots you hear. Make your offer a good one (and make sure it actually works, please…). It’s OK to be self-aware, humor is fine, and consider making multiple versions depending on the audiences you’re targeting.

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