Three tips for creating native advertising and branded content

You’ve heard the terms. You’ve seen the content. But how can
you make it work for you?

In
a recent TechCrunch piece
, Dan Greenberg and James Navin of Sharethrough, a
native video advertising company, defined native advertising as “digital ad
formats that integrate more seamlessly (yet transparently) into website
aesthetics, user experiences and/or editorial, in ways that offer more value to
both advertisers and readers.”

Native advertising and branded content creation is a
technique that we’re using today to reach our key audiences, and here are some tried
and true methods that have helped me reach my native advertising and branded
content goals:

1.
It’s tempting but don’t force a brand mention in
your branded content. Think about a topic or conversation you want to own, and
let the brand attribution follow. Native advertising and smart branded content
shows that you can host an authentic conversation without making it all about
you.

Lauren Drell, Mashable’s
branded content editor, has an interesting take on that, which you can find
below in her interview with Shane Snow,
cofounder of Contently
. We’ve had the opportunity to work with Lauren and
the Mashable branded content team, and saw amazing success
in creating authentic and shareable branded content.

2.
Go beyond the impression. Smart native advertising
and branded storytelling is targeted for a specific audience. Just because an
outlet can guarantee hundreds of thousands of impressions, it doesn’t guarantee
that the content will be relevant to or shared by viewers or readers.

3.
Native advertising doesn’t come cheap, but
remember… it’s comes down to the quality of the content. Experiment, test and
learn to get insight into the content that resonates with an outlet’s audience.
Something that worked for “Brand A” and was shared thousands of times may not
have the same impact for “Brand B.” Make sure you understand what’s right for
your brand.

The native advertising and branded content world is
constantly evolving, but if smart storytelling is at the core of your strategy,
you’ll be set up for success.

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