The Rise of Native Advertising: The Next Frontier of Marketing
Every day millions of potential customers log in to their favorite social media networks, visit their preferred news sites, and check out their top blogs.
There is a lot of interesting information out there for them. So how can your business reach the saturated minds of new customers?
A revolutionary new form of marketing is native advertising. Simply put, native advertising is creating and placing sponsored advertising content where viewers least expect it. Sharethrough describes native ads as “form” and “function” existing harmoniously.
Traditionally, advertising excels in the “form” aspect. The goal of advertising is to raise brand awareness, increase leads, and make more sales.
Unfortunately, this has been all too apparent for consumers. With all the noise in the advertising world, potential customers are more immune to obvious flashy sales gimmicks.
Consumers want clear advertising. Ads that speak to them not only from a product or service point of view, but ads that build a story, trust, and add something of value.
It’s not enough for businesses to promote a “HUGE SALE” or “50% OFF EVERYTHING.” What does your business do differently? Why should your customer stop, amid all of the digital noise, and take notice to your ad campaign?
Native advertising bridges the gap between the ad’s objective and the customer’s interest. By appearing naturally on popular networks like Facebook, Wall Street Journal, and Instagram, businesses can target their preferred audiences.
Your business knows (or should know) its target audience. If you’re a vegan cupcake store, you’re probably not targeting BBQ pit masters. And that’s ok. There’s too much noise in the business world so you need to be extremely specific with your targeting, or you’re just going to annoy people with irrelevant ads.
Everyone and their Aunt Lucy are launching their own business ideas, plus your company has to compete against massive corporations.
It is easy to feel like a small sailboat in a big, wide ocean. But fear not! Native advertising is here to level the playing field. Studies indicate that consumers are “more accepting of native advertisements.”
There are a few main types of native ads:
In-Feed Native Ads
You’ve probably already seen these your own Facebook or Twitter feeds. In-feed ads are a quiet, but powerful way to include your advertising content where people are already looking for new content.
When you log in to Facebook, you’re not actively looking for a new product. But if the ad content is engaging enough, you’re likely to like, comment, and click. The secret sauce for success is targeting. Social media gives a platform for ads to target certain audience like men or women, baseball fans, or college graduates.
You can get extremely specific with targeting, and you should! The more specific your targeting is, the more specific your ad copy will be, and the more likely you are to reach someone who is going to convert.
Search and Promoted Listings
In today’s world, more consumers are vetting companies and their products before ever stepping inside your store. While organic SEO best practices are important to your business’ long-term marketing plans, paid search results can easily fit into your customer’s search without being intrusive or flashy.
Made popular by Google Adwords, promoted search listings are placed above organic search results and can lead to a lucrative jump in website traffic. This type of marketing tool may not feel like true advertising, but that’s why it appeals to consumers. Adding a well written promoted search with a clear call to action guides potential consumers to your website or landing page.
Like In-Feed native ads, targeting is a huge factor in success. Set up specific keywords for areas in your business you want people to know about. Potential customers are happy because they get relevant results and advertisers are happy because they can promote their brand effectively.
Content is king. So when it comes to getting your brand noticed, content recommendation widgets are an attractive option. These widgets appear on websites as sponsored content normally starting with “Recommended for You” or “From Around the Web.”
There are specific algorithms for placing the right kind of widget with the right kind of article. Another way to get your widget noticed is to feature trending content from your website to pique reader’s interests.