In order to define native advertising, let’s look at what it is not:
- Native advertising is not a banner ad.
- The native definition does not include deceptive practices; it is clearly identified as an ad.
So what is it? Native ads are a form of content marketing, and the content shows up in a syndication stream across various platforms. It can take the form of an image, a video, or a written piece that accompanies images or video.
Native Advertising Best Practices
1 Create a Draft.
Every native ad begins with a draft. This draft will guide the publisher to polish and create a final copy that will incorporate brand message. Hire a company who specializes in article writing services, but be prepared to guide the copywriter specific instructions. Examples below:
- Create a funny or thought provoking graphic or video, and instruct the writer to create copy about the photo or graphic.
- News piece. Instruct the writer to create an article that resembles a news piece: An informational headline, a compilation of data, and an innovative summary or conclusion that leaves the reader wanting more.
2 Budget Outline.
Native advertising campaigns are priced based on CPM (cost per thousand impressions) or with flat rate campaigns. As of 2014, publishers are charging premium prices. You can gather quotes from the following companies:
3 Analyze Publishers.
Gather information about each publisher, and evaluate the following details:
- Is retargeting part of the platform?
- What are click rates?
- What type of exposure is gained through social networks?
- Do rates include the creation of content or editing services?
- What type of metrics are used to evaluate performance? Page views? Clicks? Time spent on the articles? Beware of ad fraud.
- Can you choose the individual sites where the ad appears?
4 Use the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) Native Advertising Playbook as a guide.
This guide will help you navigate the different types of native ads, and empower you when gathering information from publishers.
Native advertising is new, and as a result, it keeps changing. Embarking on this type of campaign can seem overwhelming, but with all new things, you have to start somewhere. These four steps will propel your content marketing initiative in the right direction, and open up new doors. Buckle up, it’s going to be quite a ride! Congratulations on moving toward the first step.