Native ads are one of the most important areas of investment among digital publishers and social media companies.
The ads come in many different forms — a native mobile ad on the Yahoo weather app, for example, is far different from a native ad in the Facebook News Feed.
Nonetheless, what this type of advertising has in common is that it looks and feels like the site itself and so doesn’t disrupt a user’s experience the way traditional banner and side bar ads often have.
Native ads also perform better than non-native ads and so command higher prices. For this reason, publishers are in a race to deploy as much native ad inventory as possible. The challenge is that native ads run the gamut — from social ads bought programmatically, to sponsorships that require an in-house staff to create.
In a new and exclusive report from BI Intelligence, we examine each of the different native ad formats and look at spending trends for each. We find that spending on native ads will reach $US7.9 billion this year and grow to $US21 billion in 2018. Social will remain the biggest slice of this spending but native-style display will grow its share rapidly. We are the only research service that has provided a detailed breakdown of spend projections and growth rates for each of the three main native ad types — social-native, native-style display ads, and sponsored content.
Here are some of the key takeaways:
- Social native ads will account for the biggest share of native ad revenue during this time period, but native-style display ads will grow the fastest.
- Social-native, including Facebook News Feed ads and promoted tweets on Twitter, will draw a majority of native ad revenue between 2013 and 2018.
- Native display ads, like the splashy native ads on Yahoo’s news pages and apps, will see the fastest ramp-up.
- Sponsored content, like some of the paid stories and sections on BuzzFeed and The New York Times (and Business Insider), has also attracted considerable attention.
- Native ads perform better than traditional display. This is particularly true on mobile. Desktop native click-through rates (CTRs) averaged a respectable 0.15%, while native-mobile ads had CTRs over 1%, according to recent data from Polar Media Group and Celtra, respectively.
- Consumers hold a generally positive attitude toward native advertising, according to survey data, but advertisers and publishers must ensure that ads are relevant and are purchased by trustworthy brands to avoid the risk of any mainstream backlash.
In full, the report:
- Provides charts and datasets on native ad spend trends and audience perceptions
- Forecast spending on top native ad formats, including social, display, and sponsorships
- Clearly defines the most important native ad formats and provides example images
- Analyses how native ads preform compared to their traditional counterparts
- Looks at how audiences perceive native ads, and how advertisers and publishers can keep their attitudes positive
- Demystifies the native-advertising landscape, highlights the most popular types of native ads and sponsored content
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