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  • Writer's pictureSundeep Mallipudi

6 Steps to create a successful "Native Advertising Strategy"

Updated: Mar 3, 2020

Well, Traditional advertising isn’t as effective as they once were.

It is reported that in 2019 around 80% of US adults use at least one ad-blocking method, so if you’re still using regular display ads, you’re probably not getting their attention.

So, to reach your potential audience without any roadblocks, you need to adopt new strategies like native advertising strategy into your digital marketing plan.

Native advertising: The refreshing and unobtrusive form of advertising that syncs beautifully with web content and is receiving the attention of many publishers.

Well, a lot of advertisers believe that native advertising is more reliable and engaging than normal ads. And, customers are more likely to pay attention to native ad content, you get more clicks and sales from native ads compared to other ad formats. For example, Nike Native Ad Campaign resulted in a CTR 8.8X for Native display ads compared to typical display ads. It is also reported that native ads registered 18% higher lift in purchase intent and 9% lift for brand affinity responses than banner ads.

Strategizing a good native advertising campaign

These days the audience is not looking for advertisements, they are more focusing on learning about the product or service first and they make a purchase decision. So content has become a major part of the buyer's journey. It is reported that 75% of the audience claims to be interested in content if it is ‘relevant to them’, whether it is branded or not. The audiences are more focused on content which explains them about the product rather than a disturbing display advertisement when they are browsing something else. So, marketers should more focus on lead nurturing to convert the prospects with the help of native advertising strategy.

Before you create your Native Advertising Strategy

  • Understand your audience

  • Set your campaign goals - such as increasing brand awareness, generating leads, or sales

  • Do some research on the content your audience is looking for

  • How can you create content relevant to your product or services which matches your audience preferences (think engaging, worthy, and relevant content, rather than hard sell)

  • Select your platforms on which you’ll run your native ad campaigns (such as publisher sites or social media)

  • Select your native ad campaign type, it may be content discovery or in-feed ads or recommendation widgets or video campaigns or paid search)

6 Steps to create an awesome and successful "Native Advertising Strategy"

It is always overwhelming to try out new marketing techniques, particularly if you have a set process and strategy in place. But then its as simple as you do any other digital campaign it's much easier than a few. You don't even need to have deep pockets for running these ads. So, lets now look into 6 simple steps to create an awesome and successful native advertising strategy.

1. Set Your Campaign Goals

Well, every marketing campaign strategy starts with setting up your campaign goals, it is the same here in the native advertising strategy as well. You need to first set up your campaign goal, you may keep your goal as Generating leads or acquiring sales or Getting subscribers or site members or Increasing website traffic or Boosting brand awareness or any other goal which suits your purpose.

You can likewise think about other goals as analyzing your content, how engaging is your content, how are readers reacting to the content, how long they are staying on a particular topic which gives you more insights into creating engaging content. Anyway, you have to set a particular campaign goal according to your business objectives.

2. Define your Target Audience

After setting up your native advertising campaign goal, now you need to define the audience you want to target from your segmented audience.It is always important to show up to the audience at the right time, in the right place, with the right content. And that is why defining your target audience is important.

If you are newly adopting a native advertising strategy start with your segmented audience, from which you will have an idea of reaching a particular target group based on their personas. You may also look out for reaching a new audience who has never heard of you by creating a look-alike/prospect audience. So, it is important to keep your targeting option broader at the beginning and they once the native advertising campaign is up and running you will have a clear idea of what is working for your and which group of audience is most engaging to your native ads. And then once you have a better idea of the target group you can now dig into deeper targeting options, you can target ads by age, gender, interests, attributes, location, device usage, buyer intent, and others which makes your native advertising campaign reach a more relevant audience.

3. Choose the Right Publishers

Platforms such as Outbrain, Taboola, Redirect, Native ads and others provide you access to thousands of publisher websites that run native ad campaigns. Well, as part of your native advertising strategy, you can choose any platform which provides you to run native advertising on publisher websites.

Before choosing a platform look into the amount of reach your content could potentially get, the relevance of the audience on the publisher websites (is the publisher website content and audience demographics and geographic factors match the audience that your targeting), also look in for other options available for such as selecting the publishers' websites by location, device, etc. Most of the platforms give similar features, so you don't need to be too worried, you can start using multiple platforms initially test them and analyze the stats and then you can continue with the best platform for you.

Some other Native Advertising Platforms are Nativo, Gravity, TripleLift.

4. Identify Relevant Content

Content always plays an important role in any native advertising strategy. You need to just understand that you should create content that is relevant to your audience, for that just step into the shoes and try to understand what kind of content is more attracting your audience.

Once you know what kind of content is more attractive for your audience, create content to nurture your audience i.e, create helpful content to your audience that is informative, solving a problem relevant to your audience or create content for generating leads i.e, more specified to your product or service benefits in addition to any helpful information for the audience. Whatever is your content composition make-it more interesting and informative.

5. Allocate Campaign Budget

Well, a lot of advertisers struck at this point not knowing how to strategize their budget on native ads. Get an idea of whether your campaign should be run with CPM (Cost Per 1000 Impressions) or CPC (Cost Per Click). CPM is the amount you spend every time 1000 viewers view your campaign items. CPC is the amount you spend every time someone clicks on your campaign items.

Once you have decided on CPM or CPC, identify what is your ideal CPM or CPC, and allocate your daily spending limit and also how much you want to spend overall. It's always advisable to start off your native ad campaign with high CPM or CPC. This gives your content an advantage to get in front of more people and gives you more data to work with when you’re ready to optimize your campaigns.

6. Analyze and Test it until you get it right.

It is always important to track and analyze your campaign performance to understand where it is achieving your set campaign goals. You need to analyze the data and understand the different factors that are affecting the reach. You may do an A/B test with headlines and images from which you can get an even better idea of what's working for you. Try and analyze the tested data on regular bases and make sure you get the right combination which will achieve your campaign goals.

To conclude, follow these 6 steps, and you’re set for an awesome and successful native advertising strategy for improving your brand awareness, generating leads and getting sales.

If you think I have missed some point, please do comment below.

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