Native advertising is on the rise. This form of marketing involves creating ads that match the format of the publisher’s website, has been massively adopted both by publishers and advertisers. And it makes sense, these ads are effective because, as they blend seamlessly within the regular content, they lower the audience’s cognitive barriers and allow the message to pour in. At the same time, they are less prone to be blocked by ad blocking software. For these reasons, according to BI Intelligence, this year native ads will account for 56% of the total ad revenue in the US, and this figure is expected to grow to 74% by 2021.

However, as it becomes more prevalent, this form of advertising requires for marketers to pay attention to the latest trends in the industry, in order to get the best out of their campaigns. Based on our experience working on Harrenmedia’s Native and contextual ads unit, these are the trends we detect for this year.

Taglines are Becoming as Important as Headlines

Gone are the days when a good headline was enough to capture readers. Today’s marketers need to work on the tagline of their articles equally hard. A good practice is to match the publisher’s style, and A/B test different headline-tagline combinations in order to get the best results and highest engagement as possible.

There’s less time to capture the audience

According to a study conducted by Microsoft, over the past couple of years, the time advertisers have to capture users has lowered. This means you have to remember you have roughly 8 seconds, which is the typical attention span of the average user. So make sure to use every word to appeal to your audience.

Strategic Partnerships are Becoming More Important

Brands and publishers are collaborating like never before, and working together to create great and relevant content that appeals to the right audiences every time. Another interesting trend, is that more and more companies are hiring bloggers in relevant vertical to create their content. This has to do with these content creators’ capability to understand audiences and write in a candid tone.

Images are Becoming more Powerful

Visually-rich ads are proven to be becoming more effective. Sites like Upworthy and BuzzFeed, which rely heavily on images are growing consistently, and so is the engagement their native ads produce. Make sure to include good pictures in your native ads and the content they link to in order to get more engagement.

Engagement is the New Key Metric

While native ads’ efficiency can be measured through traditional metrics like reach and click through rate, engagement is becoming increasingly important. This metric, which measures how long and to what extent visitors interact with the advertiser’s content is important to understand purchase intention and brand awareness.

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