Wait, was that an ad?

It’s no secret that advertisers are constantly looking for new ways to share content and engage consumers. In addition to creating valuable content for their readers, advertisers are trying to find ways to incorporate content into platforms and sites their consumers are already visiting regularly, but not in the form of a banner ad.

Imagine yourself scrolling through your Facebook feed. Have you ever noticed posts by brands that look exactly like your friend’s posts?

If you answered yes, then you’ve been exposed to native advertising. These types of ads are shared as posts rather than banner ads or commercials, which allows advertisers to seamlessly integrate their content into the feeds their consumers already subscribed to.

Although native advertising strays away from traditional mass media messaging, it leverages your brand as a thought leader and provides your consumers with relevant content they actually care to read.

Social platforms are a great place to integrate native advertising, but partnerships with leading news sites are another interesting option. One example of this was the Game of Thrones quiz created by Buzzfeed and HBO. Although it doesn’t scream “advertising,” the strategic campaign engaged consumers while promoting the show.

Whether your brand shares interesting content on social media or creates quirky quizzes on popular websites, one thing is key: relevancy. Your consumers are actively searching for content that not only appeals to their interests, but also matters to them at that particular moment in time. Now we’re not saying you need to be a mind reader here, but stay ahead of your audience by crafting content that appeals to current news, culture and entertainment.

What’s your go-to marketing strategy? Have you dabbled in native advertising?



Joseph S. Grano, Jr., has a record of success providing vision and strategic direction to organizations experiencing rapid growth and change. He is one of those rare individuals who have made a successful transition from corporate leader to entrepreneur and owner of his own growing company.