Traditional banner ads need to really stand out in order to be effective at generating leads today. They are much more effective for building a brands image, rather than getting a click. With banner clicks down to an all-time low of two-tenths of 1%, they seem to be going the way of print magazine advertising.
Native advertising, on the other hand, has been growing steadily for some time now. These are the stealthy ads that try to look like news or other unbias content. To be effective native ads also need to stand out, but they need to stand out from the editorial content that sourrounds them. Well written but sponsored articles that have too much of a slant toward the sponsor lose credibility quickly.
Although this is a very controversial type of advertising, in an AdAge.com article published in September 2014, Simon Dumenco says he still believes that some native advertising actually works for consumers. He cites these sample messages: “…I’m hungry — thanks for reminding me that you’re delicious, Snickers!” and “I’ve gotta fix the porch door — so thanks for reminding me you exist, Home Depot! ” but he adds, “I Don’t quite get why brands want to sound like something they’re not.”
Although native advertising does require disclosure, many native ads do seem to attempt to disguise themselves as news or as unbiased and informative articles, and minimize the disclosure. It seems like consumers are wise to this and that marketers should stop trying to be sneaky about it. We recommend just offering something of real value. There are plenty of less deceitful ways of to promote what you sell. If you want to publish an article, just make the article about the brand, like a press release, but with the emphasis on information to help the market, and without the newsy slant.
We use straightforward article marketing (like native advertising without the stealth) and press releases on Building Products News and other article sites. If you would like our help publishing “sponsor content” we can assist, but if you want our help with it, it should clearly be “sponsored” and not just because of a disclosure statement. Unless it’s clear and straightforward, we don’t think native advertising is a great way to go. On the positive side, it’s not as annoying as email SPAM.