Native Advertising is definitely something that is becoming increasingly popular, and if you are looking forward to having a successful ad campaign, it is important that you, too, become abreast of the examples of native ads and how it actually works.
Native advertising is immensely effective in building brand relevance and capturing your target audience just the way you intend to. Its primary goal is promoting the services or products of the advertisers in a way that the ad contents fit in a seamless manner in the environment it appears in and also does not disrupt user experience in any way.
Top Native Advertising Stats for 2023
- Did you know that in the US, expenditure on native advertising escalated by 37% in 2021 and is expected to reach a whopping $98.59 billion in 2023?
- In fact, considering the statistics, 47% of marketers globally believe that native advertising is actually highly effective.
- In fact, it has also been found that display ads are as much as 62% harder to understand when compared to native ads and social ads are 31% harder too.
- Did you know that native ads have a much higher viewability when compared to other ads – the percentage is 53%! As a result, the intent to purchase also increases by 18%, and the visual engagement is also almost as much as or slightly higher than the editorial content, which is originally there on the page.
A lot of studies have also shown that native ads have the capability of beating banner blindness, which makes their success inevitable.
But what is all the excitement about? Why is a native advertisement so important and effective? Let us discuss the following points to go into the details of how native advertisement functions.
- What does Native Advertising actually Refer to?
- Various Types of Native Advertising
- Examples of Native Ads
- How Much Does it Cost?
- How are Native Ads Different from Display Ads?
What Are Native Ads?
Simply put, Native ads are a form of advertising that matches and blends in with the medium it appears on. It can include anything starting from articles and infographics to videos – if the content creator can produce it, corporations can purchase it, and publishers can promote it, they are native ads.
However, the only thing that differentiates it from other advertorials is that it should be able to align with the established editorial tonality and style of the website or app and should also be able to offer the kind of information that the target audience of the website or app would typically expect.
These are the qualities that make it difficult to point out the native ads, as they blend quite well with the organic content of the site. This also becomes easy because there are hardly any guidelines regarding how the publishers should label their native ads, and also, the transparency factor is dealt with by various publications in various ways.
Simple, right? Keep reading for an even better understanding of what native ads are and how you can benefit from using them properly. By the way, here’s a list of some of the best native ad networks out there in case you were looking for that information.
Let’s start with the types of native ads.
Common Types of Native Ads
The term “native ad” refers to a large and ever-expanding list of advertisement formats and delivery methods. Here is a list of the current most common types you will run into.
In-Feed Ad Units
They come integrated into the content, social platform or feeds. They are custom-made to blend really well with the content of the publisher and minimize disruption and obtrusion for the audience. They can be sponsored articles as well as ads designed to appear to be articles and match the content surrounding them.
These are ads that appear at the top of search engine results that appear similar to other results being displayed. The most popular search ads are Google AdWords and Bing Ads.
When reading an article or viewing other content, you will sometimes see near the content a section with links to related content and pages. These are usually paid advertising spots that guide the visitor to other sites and advertising.
These types of ads usually appear on e-commerce sites like Amazon and eBay. They have sponsored product listings that have been paid for by the seller or manufacturer. They appear just like other product listings, but they appear at the top of listings, recommended product listings and other preferred positions.
Contextual text ads like Google AdSense fall in this category of native ads. They are ads that contain advertising related to the content on the page it appears or is related in some way.
There are, of course, many more forms of native ad formats, but the ones discussed above are the most popular types.
Best Examples of Native Ads
Sometimes the best way to understand something is to take a look at it. So let’s do just that. Let’s take a look at some examples of native ads.
1) The Onion – Fun Example of Native Advertising
The Onion, one of the wittiest yet satirical websites on the internet, does quite well when it comes to native ads. Here’s a fun example of the Native ad!
However, in this case, The Onion designed this ad specifically for the client H&R Block instead of Block just publishing their own content on the site. The content and positioning here clearly identify with Native ads, although they may be somewhat different from traditionally sponsored ads.
Here, although the banners have been used as CTA, the original purpose of increasing brand awareness of H&R has been a success and has been possible because of this Native Ad.
2) Forbes – Informational Type of Native Ad
Like others, Forbes has also resorted to a contributor-led model and has started to publish native advertising. This may be considered a great example of native ads as although it has a clearly advertisement-based angle, it also has actual informational content.
3) UPS Infographic – Native Ad Example for Branding
This infographic may not be top-notch in its design, but it does its job alright. This is a great example of native ads considering it’s almost indistinguishable from the original content of Fast company.
The only thing that gives it away is the tine gray tag “Advertisement”, which one can easily miss anyway. The infographic also smartly uses the brand UPS’s colour scheme of brown and yellow, which further enhances brand engagement in a subtle way. It successfully sells UPS’s format of “problem/solution”, which is tried and trusted.
4) BuzzFeed – Paid Native Ad Listings
When viewing the main page of BuzzFeed, look for the yellow “promoted by” boxes. These are paid native ad listings.
5) New York Times – Native Ad for Brand Recognition
This is a paid post to increase Dell’s brand recognition.
6) Facebook – Sponsored Native Ads
Go scroll through your news feed on Facebook. Notice the sponsored posts that appear directly in your news feed? These are also native ads.
7) Google – Contextual Native Ads
When you search on Google, did you notice the top few search results are actually paid-for placements? These are prime examples of in-search contextual native ads.
It is obvious that planning as well as executing digital ad campaigns are indeed time-consuming and overwhelming. Here’s how native ads make it easier for you:
They are Efficient
Say Goodbye to Ad Fatigue
The Profitability of Native Ads
When looking at it from a general point of view, native ads can be considered quite a cost-effective way of promoting your brand and spreading your message. Like all advertising formats, the cost depends on where it is being displayed and how large an audience is.
Now for programmatic native campaigns to be successful, it becomes handy because it lets you optimize the patterns to fit the allocated budget. If the campaign is supposed to be shown on only a premium publishing platform, CPM prices are supposed to be higher than showing the same ads on public forums, for example.
In the case of native ads, the Cost-per-Mille generally remains on the higher side when compared to banner ads.
In the case of a programmatic display campaign, the average CPM prices vary between $0.50 – $4.
Native ad prices can cross this threshold, going as far as $10 or $20.
The high CPM, however, has not affected its popularity and growth. Considering its ability to drive high engagement, people often consider native advertising as a rather cost-efficient part of their marketing mix.
Also Check: How to Optimise Native Ads for Higher Revenue
Why Native Ads Are Becoming Popular Online
Native ads are becoming more and more popular with advertisers due to several developments in human behaviour brought on by past advertising methods and ever-shrinking attention spans.
Viewers have been so inundated with ad banners that now they just mentally block them out. They are becoming blind to them, this phenomenon is aptly called banner blindness.
Some Internet users even run browser plug-ins that remove all the banner advertising from the pages they view. Advertisers are becoming aware of this and are tired of throwing advertising dollars away.
Also, the human attention span has become smaller and smaller over the decades, especially since the advent of the Internet. Advertisers are quickly learning that they only have seconds to grab the attention of a person and have to fight to keep it.
Native advertising aims, and in some cases, effectively manages to solve the above problems. It grabs readers’ attention and gets the advertising message over to them.
Can Native Ads Go too Far?
Many forms of native ads blend in so well with the surrounding content and appear as articles instead of ads to many readers. This can and does cause some confusion and trust issues.
A reader could think he is reading an article or review by a third party when in reality, he is reading an ad written by the seller of the product.
So, the reader is thinking he is reading an unbiased opinion about a product when he is actually reading a highly biased opinion. See what I am getting at?
With the rise in popularity of native ads, the blur between content and advertisements is becoming greater.
This blurring raises the need for proper disclosure, so a reader understands that he is, in fact, reading an ad or sponsored content.
Simply labelling the native ad with a label such as “Advertisement”, “Sponsored”, “Suggested Post”, “Sponsored By”, or “Presented By” could easily disclose to the reader that he is reading a paid advertisement without being intrusive.
Without proper disclosure, a native ad could move into the realm of deception.
Since native advertising can be quite profitable, you will always see some marketers pushing the envelope. Just be careful that you don’t cross that fine line.
Native Ads vs. Display Ads
- Display ads are essentially banner ads, which appear in the form of graphics in various shapes and sizes.
- Display ads are often considered effective in the promotion of certain products, brand building as well as retargeting the visitors of the website.
- They are designed to showcase your brand and your product going by the guidelines of the same. Also, thanks to the widespread inventory on a number of websites, they can reach people at whichever place they go to and browse.
- Marketers often act as a very important part of their online advertising strategy.
- However, on the other hand, native ads are designed to fit inside the media that they are displayed in.
- They sport an elite, editorial look and appear to be much less hard-selling or obtrusive when compared to banner or display ads.
- While using native ads, brands can go into showcasing their products or services or causes in a little more detailed form.
- The style definitely catches the attention of the viewers, at the same time giving the brands a scope to tell their story, and in a better way at that.
- The average click-through rate is 0.3%, and native ads are actually thus a very useful way of driving traffic to the intended blog, article, website or app.
By now, you should have a pretty good grasp of what native ads are. We’ve covered what native ads are, their types, and covered examples of actual native ads. We then raised the question of whether native ads could go too far.
The bottom line is that native ads work well because they blend into the content around them. A good native ad actually provides useful content or leads the viewer to additional information about the content they are exploring.
A great native ad can entertain and inform as well as sell or bring brand recognition.
The key to writing and designing a successful native ad is to know your audience and the medium the native ad will appear within.
Native ads are designed to blend in with the surrounding content and look like editorial content, while traditional ads are more clearly labelled as advertising.
Native ads can take many forms, including in-feed ads, sponsored content, promoted listings, and more.
Native ads are typically priced on a cost-per-thousand (CPM) or cost-per-click (CPC) basis.
Native ads can be effective if they are well-targeted and well-designed. They can be less intrusive and more engaging than traditional forms of advertising, which can lead to higher click-through rates and conversion rates.
Display ads are banner-like ads that are typically placed on the sidebars or header/footer of a website. Native ads are more integrated into the content of the website and are meant to look like the content.