Season 3 of "Serial" is coming.
Unfortunately, we just don't know exactly when.
Pandora Senior Vice President Lizzie Widhelm teased the new season of the wildly popular "This American Life" series as she explained to Cheddar why her company sees a ripe opportunity in what remains a very young platform for podcasts.
"We think there's a huge opportunity there to grow listener hours, make those makers happy and have something for advertisers," she said in an interview with Cheddar's Peter Gorenstein at the Cannes Lions festival.
But many obstacles must be overcome, among them the advertising model.
"Anything that's early has a non-scalable ad model," Widhelm said, referring to the relative newness of podcasts as a medium.
But the content offers real potential for advertisers, she said.
"There's a lot of consumers right now that are moving into podcasts and loving them because their identity is becoming so important to them.
"When you're listening to content that really resonates with you and is really personal to you, any ad that sits in that format is going to have a better chance of performing than an ad that's stitched into something that's just a mass broadcast."
Discoverability of podcasts is another problem. "What's broken with podcasts is not the audience; the audience is there, they love it," she said. "They can't find anything from a topical standpoint."
She added that Pandora was in a "pilot phase" of testing different topical shows.
As for the launch date of "Serial" Season 3, Widhelm said, "I can't tell you; Sarah will kill me," a reference to one of the show's creators, Sarah Koenig.
"But you'll know soon enough; it's gonna be great."
For the full interview, click here.