There’s a reason businesses are rushing to embrace native advertising in their marketing campaigns: It performs significantly better than traditional ads. Statistically, people click on native ads 52 percent more often than display ads, and native ads boost purchase intent by over 50 percent compared to just 30 percent for display. Unfortunately, however, many companies aren’t seeing these type of results from their native ad campaigns.
Native is a relatively new phenomenon, but it’s experiencing explosive growth. In 2013, companies spent $2.9 billion on native ads; the 2015 estimate is $7.5 billion according to Business Insider. Inexperience with the medium may account for the disappointing results some companies are experiencing. If your campaign is underperforming, check out these four native advertising agency red flags that may lead to decreased ROI.
They Don’t Focus on Value
Native ads compete with editorial content for your customer’s attention, so the ads have to communicate immediate value to the reader. Simply generating content isn’t enough; the content must be topical, relevant, and targeted to the right audience, otherwise it will get lost in the digital noise. According to a recent study, 86 percent of leads recognize that advertising is necessary to receive free content online, but 90 percent would not click on native ads that weren’t relevant or contained no valuable information.
They Don’t Tailor the Content to the Site
Most agencies create assets designed to be deployed across multiple channels, but this is the wrong approach for native ads. The reason – native ads must be designed to integrate seamlessly with the host site’s editorial content and aimed at the site’s own readership to be successful. Generic content deployed across multiple platforms will have a negative effect on ROI.
They Aren’t Upfront with the Reader
Transparency is the key to successful native advertising campaigns. One study showed that nearly 70 percent of consumers felt tricked or deceived when they unwittingly clicked on sponsored content. This can have negative repercussions for your brand. If your content is interesting and valuable to the reader, disclosing that it’s sponsored will improve, not detract from, your campaign’s overall success.
They Forget to Follow Up
Even if your native ads are driving new visitors to your website or landing page, only two to ten percent will convert on average. This is usually because visitors are very early in the purchasing process. These prospects are low hanging fruit, however, because they’ve already showed an interest in your brand. You simply need to nurture them.
This is where remarketing comes in. When done right, remarketing boosts relevance, reduces online clutter, and leads to improved campaign ROI. For native advertising campaigns, the best ads are based around the content, or marketing trigger, that brought them to your site in the first place.
Native advertising can be a powerful tool in your marketing arsenal, but to get the best ROI, agencies need to understand the unique challenges of the medium. If your native advertising agency isn’t focusing on these four key elements, you might not be getting the most from your investment.