The Many, Many Forms of Native Advertising

What exactly is Native Advertising? Native ads are placed within content in the context of the user’s experience. The advertiser pays for the placement of this content and gains attention by inserting brand information into the content itself. Much of the confusion over Native Advertising comes down to subtle differences between Native Advertising forms and the variation in terminology used by marketers.

Since there is a lot of murkiness around what qualifies as Native Advertising, let’s take a look at different types!

Online Advertorials

Article advertorials are labeled as “partner”, “sponsored”, or “branded” content and include call-to-action messaging. This example from Celeb Bistro is featured on the main page of the website and opens up into a full article detailing jewelry trends in connection with the subscription jewelery service, RocksBox.

Another example, this article 9 Unconventional Pets You Can Actually Own on Buzzfeed is sponsored by Skittles. Buzzfeed readers get to enjoy engaging and humorous content while also being exposed to Skittles advertising.

Online Video Advertorials

Brands create videos (or have the publication produce it)  and pay for its placement on the publication’s website. Cottonelle hired The Onion (more specifically their Onion Labs creative agency) to create a hilarious “Beat Bums” poetry reading video about their line of personal care products. “Old routine bites dust! No rust, when in Cottonelle you trust.”

Sponsored Content

So what’s the difference between an Advertorial and Sponsored Content? It’s all about the presence of a Call-to-Action. Sponsored Content simply notes which brand sponsored this particular piece of content, no call-to-action used. This Sponsored Post found on The Onion serves as brand awareness for the Sanuk footwear brand. This article is also surrounded by Sanuk banner ads which contain calls to action.