When we talked about native advertising previously, we discussed its difference from other types of content marketing, and the important of its 'camouflage' in some marketing circles. By looking like the articles around them, native ads can slip past mental and digital blocks on online ads, giving your brand more visibility.
What we didn't discuss was how to properly use native ads for your next campaign – because we were saving that for now! If you want to create native ads that fit right into popular publications, here's how to start.
1. Identify Your Native Advertising Campaign Channels First
One of the best (and easiest) places to start is creating a list of the channels where you want native advertisements to appear. Not every channel offers the option for native advertising, and some channels may be unsuitable because they cost too much or don't reach the right audience. Review social networks (LinkedIn in particular has some sponsoring options for native advertising), online trade magazines, industry news sites, and similar channels to see where your native ads would fit best. Also remember to think about desktop native advertising vs. mobile: They aren't always the same thing, and you need to decide if you want to target both.
2. Look for Formats that Position You as an Authority
Look carefully at how native advertising is portrayed on a site. For example, if ad blockers automatically block native ads as well as banner ads, you won't reach ad-blocking viewers at all, and that may not be worth your time. You want native ads that don't just sort of look like the other content, but are actually positioned alongside other articles as something worth reading. In other words, look for native ad opportunities that respect your content.
3. Don't Just Match the Content of the Website – Make it Even Better
Speaking of content, we've got three words for you: Quality, quality, quality. Yes, you need to write about topics that are relevant to the readers of that particular site – but use that as a starting point and then try to make content that's even better than the articles readers usually see. Really focus on interesting takes, thought leadership, and unexplored news stories. You want to attract as many jaded eyeballs as possible.
4. Use A/B Testing
Your headlines and summaries are vital hooks in native advertising. Fortunately, A/B testing can help you quickly judge how effective different titles and descriptors are, and pick those that are getting the most interest. Pretty much everyone offers some form of A/B testing, from WordPress to Nativo, so be sure to use it!
5. Include a CTA – And Be Generous With It
A CTA at the end of your native ad content is necessary for conversions, and should keep to the tone and topic of the article. CTAs in these circumstances work best the more that they offer readers. Kapost did an interesting study on three kinds of calls of action and discovered that a cheat sheet of facts and tips readers could download performed the best: Something to keep in mind!
6. When in Doubt, Try Infographics
Yes, infographics can be a little too common in the B2B world at times. But they are also ideal for native advertising: Quick, digestible facts in an entertaining form with a catchy title…what's not to love? If you don't know what sort of content to use for native ads, start with infographics!