‘Native’ Is a Means to an End

|Tom Foran

This article originally appeared on Digiday April 30, 2013

Native advertising has been the online marketing world’s shiny new object for the better part of a year. Sponsored posts, branded video and search ads could all be fairly characterized as native advertising, as could a full-page denim ad in a fashion magazine or a Coca Cola-sponsored pre-movie quiz if we stretch the definition a bit.

The problem is this: So much of the discussion around native advertising is narrowly focused on placement and less on the value of a brand’s presence for consumers. The real opportunity in native is less about sexy new placements and more about a chance to move away from the old-school model of extracting value from readers in favor of starting a conversation with them through great content.

Certainly, native units help brands address one of their major issues on publisher platforms: complementing the user experience rather than interrupting it. But that’s just one half of the equation. What about the other half – the valuable content? Technically, you don’t need a “native” unit for that. If you’re truly delivering something that is useful and interesting to consumers, the vehicle is only as important as the material.

You can read the rest of the article here on Digiday.

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Tom Foran

Tom Foran

Tom Foran is Chief Revenue Officer at Outbrain. As CRO, Tom leads all Sales, Business Operations and Client Services globally.... Read more

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