One term that’s getting a lot of press these days is native marketing. While it’s likely that you’ve been seeing and hearing a lot about it, this is one term that many people have a hard time understanding.
Sometimes it really is difficult to define the true meaning of certain words. This is especially true of industry specific terms that become trendy. Catchwords and phrases such as native marketing become so popular that the actual meaning is lost and becomes harder to define the more that it is used.
Understanding Native Marketing
One of the reasons why the term native marketing is so hard to understand is because it is frequently used in the place of a related term – content marketing. While there is a relationship between the two words, because both deal with content, their meanings are actually quite different.
The most basic definition of content marketing is the creation and marketing of content. So how is native marketing different? In its simplest form, native marketing is just one of the many ways that marketers can distribute content to others. The way that these two words relate to content is not the same, and so they should not be used interchangeably.
Key Features of Native Marketing
Most native marketing efforts share certain characteristics. In general, when you pay for a third party platform to host your content, and your content is engaging, valuable, and aimed at your target audience, and the content is shared in stream on the third party platform, then you are engaging in native marketing. It’s important to note that native advertising meets all three of these traits, if it doesn’t, then it’s not native marketing. For example, if you are posting engaging and targeted content on your own site, that’s not a native ad, it’s content marketing.
One of the most important traits of native marketing that can also be a bit confusing is that it is delivered “in stream.” When we use the term “in stream,” it simply means that your content will look very similar to the other content that is already on the third party’s site. Users will access it the same way that they would the other content. Accessing native content doesn’t disrupt the user’s experience of the site, or the content, in any way.
Digital Marketer defines native marketing posts this way” “They look like content. You know… the stuff we SEEK OUT on the Internet. The stuff that entertains, informs or inspires. Native ads blend into the surroundings on platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, blogs and any other place where people congregate to consume content.”
Common Types of Native Marketing
It is nearly impossible to use the Internet without being continuously bombarded with examples of native marketing. Whenever you visit a social media platform, it’s likely that you will see “in feed” units of content that is delivered to you in the newsfeed and that appears to be created by or in partnership with the site.
Search engines also offer paid placement for brands. When you conduct an online search, you’ll likely see recommendation widgets that promote or “recommend” brands that have paid for this choice placement but that look like any other search ad result.
Third party publishing sites and social media platforms from The Wall Street Journal to Facebook and Twitter offer custom placement that features content that brands have paid them to directly embed into their site. Those sponsored stories that you see on Facebook, promoted tweets that appear on Twitter and featured videos that are “recommended” to you on YouTube are all examples of this common type of native marketing.
Here are a couple of examples.
How Native Marketing Can Benefit Your Business and Your Brand
Whether you are a new startup or an established company that is facing increased pressure from your competition, native marketing may be the answer if you need to generate new leads.
Since you are paying for placement on a third party site the goal is to reach more new, unique visitors that are interested in your niche. This allows you to increase your reach within your target audience and build awareness as well as social engagement with your brand.
Native marketing is also a great way to expose your best, existing articles and videos to a new audience. Why go through the hassle of creating new content when you can simply pay for placement and get your existing content in front of a larger group of people?
Unlike direct placement and banner ads on a third party site, or calls to action in an email campaign, native marketing presents content that is so eye-catching and useful that it hooks the interest of visitors and encourages them to virally share the content. Intrigued by this content, these same visitors, as well as those that they share it with, will also want to learn more, which will lead them to your own site.
At Clever Streak, we specialise in creating original content for you that will delight your followers because it is engaging and useful. We work with you to make certain that we thoroughly understand your business so that we can craft content for you that will build your brand’s reputation and social engagement. The content that we create for you gets results – whether you choose to market that content on your own site, or pay for placement.