Next Level Native Advertising: Where Intent, Creative & Content Meet
As consumers become more receptive to native ads, marketers are taking notice. Columnist Soo Jin Oh explains why it's time for your brand to hop on board.
Over the past few years, consumers’ opinions of native ads have shifted. While some consumers once perceived native advertising as confusing or even intrusive, they’re now becoming more open to the concept and are willing to engage with the content if it fits naturally within their interests.
This is especially true as content across the Web becomes more image-based and as more high-traffic publishers move away from banner ads. Ari Lewine, co-founder of TripleLift, refers to this movement as the “rise of the visual Web.” (Disclosure: TripleLift is a partner of Magnetic.)
Providing A Meaningful Message To Users
In recent years, many publishers have redesigned their sites to accommodate new ad types and formats. By using image-driven native advertising, marketers can get in front of consumers on popular sites and tap into publishers such as BuzzFeed and Pinterest. For example, Pinterest allows consumers to directly show intent by tagging things that they intend to do or buy.
Imagine the potential to reach and engage people when you can show them a meaningful message that blends into their experience and fits perfectly with their interests. It’s time for brands to take advantage of that potential.
Native has given advertising on mobile a new reputation. A recent TripleLift study notes that four out of five consumers say they don’t like typical mobile ads and consider them “unacceptable.”
To follow that point, the study showed that 85 percent of mobile users are “visually engaged” with native ads presented in the stream of content and two times more likely to say that they don’t care if content is an ad as long as it’s engaging.
Use Intent Data To Deliver The Right Message
Because native advertising tends to focus on placement and creative, it offers marketers an interesting opportunity when you can combine it with the right data. Using intent data will help marketers become more effective in audience gathering and streamline their creative delivery.
There is power in reaching a user who’s in the market for a product that you sell, delivering your brand as the consumer is engaging with content.
A TripleLift brand study shows a 281 percent lift in purchase intent when using this combination of intent data and brand messaging. There’s also a 10 times higher click-through rate (CTR) versus the industry average of regular banner ads.
Intent data can also help reach new and different consumers through native advertising. Brands can define your target audience based on site visits or keywords your consumer has searched for. You can then retarget users with native ads while they’re browsing the Web on their desktop or mobile devices.
You don’t have to create a separate strategy for native advertising; you can easily adapt creative elements and integrate it with your intent-driven targeting efforts.
The Many Faces Of Native Advertising
Today, there are many forms of native advertising, ranging from publisher-produced sponsored content to social advertising, content recommendation, to in-feed ads in many shapes and sizes. And because native is such a broad category, it can work for many different verticals, from retail and travel to consumer packaged goods (CPG).
A recent CPG and Consumer Products Industry report from eMarketer said that big player CPG companies such as Mondelez have expressed their intent to increase digital ad budgets, creating spending projections of $7.04 billion by 2018.
The report mentions that storytelling, in the form of native advertising, will give CPG brands increased opportunities to connect with consumers, which is especially important as private label brands continue to take up more shelf space in drugstores, grocery stores, and mass retailers.
Another reason native advertising has proven to be a valuable effort for brands is that it can run across desktop and mobile, and some marketers have begun to test out video.
Just like on desktop, native ads are able to render within the context of the site whether it be mobile, responsive, site, or in-app. It allows for maximization of the site layout versus the intrusive, ineffective standard 320×50 size that we’ve long surpassed.
Consumers are becoming more receptive to native ads, and brands are taking note. eMarketer says that native advertising is expected to double to $5 billion in 2017 from $2.4 billion in 2013. Display advertising, on the other hand, is projected to grow at half that rate.
And brands are already seeing great results. Take BuzzFeed’s recent report with Nielsen about its work with GE: They found that the native ad campaign they ran on the popular publisher site lifted consumers’ perception of GE as an “innovative” and “inspiring” brand.
Overall, as more relevant ads are delivered seamlessly to consumers, the better their online experience will be — and, in turn, the more return brands will get from their digital marketing efforts.