So, what is Native Marketing? AdverNativorial?
It seems there is a different form of marketing coming out every week at the moment. The big star of 2012 was Content Marketing. In 2013, it looks like it’s gonna be Native Marketing, currently also going by the name of Native Advertising.
So what is it?
To me, it is simply content that is designed to appeal to people on the platform on which they are engaging with it.
For example, you can only do a sponsored story on Facebook and your potential audience can engage with this and interact with it using Facebook. It’s native to Facebook.
A sponsored tweet is something you can only do on twitter, and your potential audience can engage with it on twitter.
In both these cases, the content you create must be designed to appeal to the users in the way the interact with the platform.
What does this mean?
Well, think about yourself as a Facebook user. You’re not on there to search for stuff to buy, you’re there to see what your friends are up to. You are in the mindset of wanting to like something funny Bob shared with you. This is why Facebook ads that are designed like Google PPC ads get 0.04% CTR instead of 5% CTR (although some sources say this is much lower, my results are far better than the average)
Anyone advertising to you on Facebook needs to do so, to be most effective, in a way that uses content that engages your interests and makes you part of their story. It’s more organic than direct. It’s about flirting, buying the drinks, telling a funny story, complimenting them on their hair, rather than asking directly for a shag, which is effectively what most old school advertising does.
Why has this form of advertising arisen?
Well, you could say it’s always been here as advertorial, just dressed up with a fancy name for the internet.
The fact is that much of digital marketing is moving in the same way as print advertising and then TV advertising moved back in late C19th and mid C20th.
In print, it was easy to get a response to your advertising when you were the only one doing it. Then everyone did it, so you had to get clever, issuing PR and then advertorials – adverts that looked like editorial – native to the platform they were on (ie, newspapers). Radio and TV advertising followed a similar development path.
Bottom line is this: marketers are taking old ideas into the social media realm and giving it a new name. The big difference is trust. It’s increasingly hard to pull the wool over the punters eyes on the net, and once you do that trust could be lost forever. So, if you do do a sponsored message on a social platform, for God’s sake be open and honest about what it is!
If you want to hear a real expert talk about Native Advertising, try this video at 1:25.
Pay attention to what Meabh says about Coke’s use of native advertising at 2:07.
(And then read my blog about Coke)
Ultimately, native advertising is about emotional connection. All advertising that can connect with someone emotionally is going to be far more powerful long term than just throwing up a price, some scarcity and some sex. It is always a good thing to educate, entertain and enlighten your potential customers. That’s why we made this cartoon to explain how social media really works:
When you’ve done all that, feel free to tell us what you think about advernativorial marketing and if you’ve used it with any success anywhere?