What is Native Advertising?.

Robin HamiltonCreative Director

Often used interchangeably with content marketing, despite the clear differences between the two, “Native advertising is a form of paid media where the ad experience follows the natural form and function of the user experience in which it is placed”.

As basic understanding goes, if you pay for placement then it is advertisement. If you further this, paying for placement on a relevant channel offering relevant content then it is native advertising.

In native advertising you are not utilising any channel for direct advertisement of your product or service, but instead it is a share of content that proves useful, interesting and specifically targeted to particular audiences that could be accessed via the specifically chosen channel.

Arguably you may not need to take the native advertising approach. If you are lucky enough that your content marketing through your own channels (emails, blog posts, social media etc.) is reaching your entire audience successfully then you may not see the benefit in paying for native advertising. However, the case for many is that their content marketing strategy is lacking when solely opting for their own channels. Therefore native advertising offers the opportunity to reach more audiences that in line with their target market.

Key with native advertising is that it appears seamless to the user, their experience of the channel is not distributed by this form of advertising, their experience should be enriched in fact. It is this thinking that makes many favour native advertising over other forms of advertising. The natural, helpful and unobtrusive way in which it is delivered to the user consequently makes the content more engaging and the advertiser more appreciated.

The most popular forms of native advertising are sponsored blog posts (65%), sponsored articles (63%) and Facebook sponsored updates (56%) (Joe Pulizzi).

The renewed budget spend on advertising is thought to be due to native advertising and its increased chances of success. It is thought that the native advertising has given the world of media hope that advertising can perform better than the banner ads we are all too used to seeing.


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