Native Advertising is a buzz word drawing increased amounts of attention from the marketing community, though it doesn't seem to have a widely-accepted definition. eMarketer recently took a look at the characteristics by which publishers believe define native advertising to help answer questions around the term. The most agreed upon factors include website integration, editorial content, and clear labeling as an advertisement. Could native advertising then be an advertorial? A sponsored post? Perhaps. It seems the consensus lies with the more integrated the advertisement is, the more likely it is to be defined as native.
It seems like greater integration is preferred for the advertiser, but how to consumers feel about this embedded advertising? Many feel misled by various forms of native advertising, with a whopping 86% feeling duped by sponsored video ads which appear to be content. What is a marketer to do? Disclosure is key. The benefit of native advertising is that it brings content which may be valuable to the consumer through a medium that is intuitive. Disclosure of the advertisement allows the marketer to retain those benefits without leaving the consumer feeling like they have been tricked.
In addition, KISSmetrics outlined 3 major points to keep in mind when pursuing a native advertising campaign:
- Native advertising is not a press release – This is not an opportunity to rave about your products. Instead, talk about true stories or case studies where your product has somehow improved lives or contributed to the well-being of a community. Tide does this through their Loads of Hope program which provides laundry services to areas affected by disaster.
- Learn from big brand examples – There are plenty of sponsored videos and content from brands that showcase the right way to go about native advertising. Watch and learn from them for the best ways to integrate your ads into the best possible platform.
- Consider the customer – What would your user think about your ad? Would they find it helpful? Misleading? Informative? Annoying? Gauge the effectiveness of your ad by how well customers react to it, not by how great your marketing team thinks it is.
Keeping these tips and full disclosure in mind, advertisers expect to continue to find success with native advertising- however it is defined.