Branded content and sponsored content is now a part of life. You see this type of advertising on TV shows, magazines, online and more today. The ads seem to be part of the original content, which makes them feel less intrusive to your enjoyment of any content that you’re consuming. But, how can you make native ads work for you?
Ensure Your Ads Add Value to the Consumer
The biggest obstacle to making sure that native ads work for your business is to ensure that the ads you do run add value to your customer. You can’t run a native advertisement about steak on a veggie channel; it won’t work.
Tell a Story within the Ad That Expands on Your Brand’s Message
The best native ads seek to tell stories about a consumer using the product that you’re promoting such that it expands on your brand’s message. For example, if you worked out a deal with an app maker, how are your consumers potentially using that app?
Make Sure You’re Placing the Ads Correctly
You want the ad to feel like part of the typical content they already consume on your website or destination, without feeling like they’re being interrupted. This can be tricky, but it’s part of finding a way for the ad to appear native and not as an interruption.
Clearly State That Your Ad Is Sponsored
You have to be transparent about ads, even as you want them to appear seamless, so you’ll need to clearly mark native ads as sponsored content. This will not take away from the ad as much as you may think, but it will ensure you maintain your credibility.
Use Video and Other Formats When It Works
Don’t think you have to stick to all textual ads, even if your normal content delivery consists of mostly blog posts. You can put in video and other formats to add interest and increase the visibility and stickiness of your site and the ad itself.
Consider Branded Apps to Spread Your Message
A great way to include a native advertisement is to use branded apps. Hook up with another business so that you can cross-promote your brands and messages. This works well for many types of businesses. For example, if you have a food site, you can create a shopping app that recommends products for your recipes that the consumer can find while shopping.
Make Sure That Your Ads Are Relevant to the Consumer
This is sort of the same as ensuring that the message fits in with your branding – no steak on a veggie site, right? But, the ads need to be something your audience really needs or wants to be most effective.
Measure Your Results
Nothing is ever complete without the paperwork, and this is true with any type of advertising. Always check your metrics, measure your results, and then do more of what is working and less of what is not working.
Native advertising is here to stay. Although there aren’t any standardized ways to do it yet, the important thing is to be transparent, make it fit with your story, ensure that it creates value for your audience, and test, test, test to see how and if it’s working the way you want it to.