Heard of Native Advertising yet? The buzzword is working its way into mainstream marketing… and is here to stay.
Dubbed the future of the content marketing, the unobtrusive approach to connecting with consumers is “taking over digital advertising.”
While display or banner ads are creatively-designed “branded” images that appear next to the content of the page, Native placements match the form, function and feel of the content of the page in which they appear.
Rather than a traditional “banner ad” that is a flat image with branding within, native ads often feature a headline, a description underneath, and an accompanying image.
Display ads are usually a one-size-fits-all approach, meaning they often don’t match and can seem out of place or, worse, invasive and obnoxious (it’s no wonder over 615 million devices use an adblocker of some sort, according to PageFair Adblock Report, while a HubSpot study reported that 64% of people use Adblock services because they consider ads “annoying and intrusive”).
Finally, consumers even look at native ads more than the original editorial content
A more favorable perception of native
Various studies prove Native’s superior performance.
According to Sharethrough, Native ads are viewed 52% more frequently than display ads and provide a higher CTR (60%), meaning they don’t just appeal to the viewer, they trigger engagement. Their reputation is positive, too.
According to a study by Nielson, Native ads can help lift brand favorability by up to 82%. They result in an 18% increase in purchase intent, according to MarketingLand, and 21% more of who previously bought a product from the advertiser said they would “personally identify with” the brand after viewing a native ad, according to Sharethrough.
Finally, consumers even look at native ads more than the original editorial content – barely – at 26% vs. 24%, according to the same study. At the very least consumers find Native ads as engaging as the page’s content itself.
Data agrees: Higher engagement
Higher engagement, favorability, and trust in the brand encourage consumer retention. According to DemandMetric, 60% of people are inspired to seek out a product after reading content about it and 68% of people spend time reading about brands that interest them.
As for the most popular Native ad types? According to MarTech, recommendation widgets are the most popular form of native ad units (38%), followed by in-feed units (30%), in-ad units (25%) and, finally, textual and custom designs (7%).
Native advertising has proved itself to be a superior (data-backed) performer in both perception and engagement
Spending is following!
The industry is taking note. This 2018, 58.3% of US digital display ad spending will be for native placements (up from 54.0% in 2017), according to Emarketer, and in-feed and sponsored content will grow more aggressively in the next year and reach roughly $33 billion.
In 2019, Native ad spending will increase to $41.1 billion, at which point native ads will account for 61% of total digital display ad spending in the U.S. (Emarketer via WSJ). And according to BusinessInsider, native advertising will drive 74% of all ad revenue by 2021.
All this to say, native advertising has proved itself to be a superior (data-backed) performer in both perception and engagement, far superior to digital advertising of old: the loud, text cluttered banner ads
Jason Boshoff is an entrepreneurial executive with over a decade of experience in leadership capacities responsible for strategic planning, sales and business development, operations management, product and technology development.