Native advertising is the practice that uses paid ads that correspond with the style and look of the media format that they appear in. Unlike banners or display ads, native ads are inconspicuous and do not look like other ads. Instead, native ads tend to resemble other content on the website and appear non-disruptive. Commonly, they are used in social media or on web pages.
Native advertising tends to be less intrusive than traditional ad forms and offers contextual relevance to whoever is on the website. Native advertising can help achieve a higher Click-Through Rate (CTR) and improve conversions through the tremendous creative exposure it offers.
Why is native advertising so popular?
Even for those who have zero knowledge of marketing, it’s easy to understand why it’s a very popular method used by advertisers. Today’s world is full of endless media, which has made people accustomed to seeing advertisements wherever they look. Commonly, this creates something called “ad blindness.”
Native advertising allows businesses to integrate the messages they wish to express into surrounding content, making it appear much more seamless and not intrusive. Native ads are also much more shareable since they mimic other content on the page. Increased audience engagement make native ads ideal in content-driven campaigns.
Examples of native ads
Google’s SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages):
One of the most popular and recognizable ways to use native advertising is placing paid ads in Google’s SERPs. Google places typically 3 to 4 ads at the top of its search engine results page, and they closely resemble organic listings. The only difference is they have a tiny label stating ‘Ad,’ which helps users understand that it’s a paid ad. This occurs on other search engines like Yahoo and Bing too.
Advertisements integrated into editorial content:
All content that contains a sponsored message but at the same time perfectly fits the surroundings it’s placed in. A good example is sponsored posts on Instagram. Influencers and brands transfer the message in a distinct way that blends the ad with the content seamlessly. The ad complies aesthetically with the page’s content and allows users to interact with the post the same way they would interact with any other content on the site. Other social networks like Twitter and Facebook also use this form of advertising often.
News Feed Ads:
These ads are the hardest to spot since they are integrated perfectly into their surroundings. News-based sites like Huffington Post and Buzzfeed use these commonly and usually transform the ad into an exciting piece to read and enjoy. As you see below, Netflix took this opportunity to publish a story that would promote their new film, ‘Hillbilly Elegy.’
Who benefits the most from native advertising?
- Advertisers – Both fresh start-ups and seasoned brands benefit from the powerful outreach that native ads offer. Companies that already have trending content have the opportunity to include native ads to drive brand awareness further, convert leads, and increase sales.
- Publishers – For publishers, native ads are a crucial tool for monetizing content across various platforms.
- Users – Instead of being bombarded by disruptive pop-ups, users see beautifully curated content. Users feel more assured by such products versus traditional advertising methods.