OAKLAND, Calif. — Pandora’s effort to capture a piece of the $17 billion radio ad market was the subject of a recent New York Times’ article, which said the personalized radio service is targeting the auto industry in a big way.

Earlier this month at the New York International Auto Show, Pandora announced that Nissan became the latest automotive brand to agree to integrate the service in its vehicle lines. To date, Pandora has announced partnership with a total of 18 automotive brands and seven aftermarket manufacturers.

The company also announced this month that more than 400 localized advertising campaigns have been confirmed this year as part of Pandora’s new strategy to increase sales momentum in the top local radio markets.

“Our cutting-edge advertising solutions are rapidly becoming a top choice among local marketers eager to combine the power of targeting with digital, mobile, audio and video advertising solutions to get their campaigns seen and heard by exactly the right group of people,” said John Trimble, Pandora’s CEO. “Not only do we have more than 400 local advertising campaigns kicking off in the first quarter, but we're seeing more and more local advertisers recognizing that Pandora has innovative solutions, leadership, expertise, and an audience of more than 125 million registered users."

Included in that list of new advertisers is Planet Honda of New Jersey. For three months, the dealership ran audio ads targeting adults ages 22 and up in specific New Jersey counties. Results of the campaign exceeded the dealership’s expectations.

“In today's changing media market, it is really hard to determine where to invest your marketing dollars,” said William Feinstein, the dealership’s president. “Pandora provides the best of both worlds — the reach and top-of-mind awareness of traditional media with the metrics and accountability we expect from digital media. Pandora has an incredibly strong and loyal customer base that responds well to advertisers and is constantly growing.”

Pandora executives and some of its champions on Wall Street were quoted in the New York Times article as saying the path to profitability runs through car dealerships. To view the article, click here.