Native advertising is set for a substantial increase with nearly two thirds (63%) expecting to increase their budgets this year, according to a new report.
In the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) 2015 survey, Advertising is Going Native, 127 client side marketers – more than half of whom were senior marketers – were surveyed at the end of last year to understand how they already were using, and planning to implement native advertising within their businesses.
The survey showed that native advertising, while being one of the hottest trends in the industry, is also cited as one of the most controversial. Although budgets are increasing for the marketing option it remains tiny in comparison to other methods and for 68% of respondents accounted for 5% or less of overall budgets.
Fuelled by digital
The survey showed its usage is highest across digital and online where 85% of respondents used the tactic, followed by social media where 71% used native advertising within their businesses.
Its controversy comes from the requirement to disclose that such marketing is advertising. Two thirds of respondents felt this should be made clear while 13% said they felt that it was not required. The report found that disclosure and transparency was the single biggest issue about native advertising that kept respondents up at night.
The study also highlighted the challenge of measuring the impact of native advertising for marketers. Despite the fact that such marketers use multiple metrics to help them understand and measure the effectiveness of native marketing the report showed that no metric stood out as most important suggesting that there is a requirement for a deeper relevant set of metrics that allows better analysis and insight.
“A win for marketers”
But despite its challenges native advertising will continue to rise in popularity according to Bob Liodice, president and CEO of the ANA.
“Native advertising is proving to be a win for marketers, consumers, and publishers. Marketers win because their messages have a better likelihood of being seen and read versus traditional advertising. Consumers win because marketing messages have more contextual relevance than traditional advertising. And publishers win with the business development potential,” he said.
However, consumers must be able to tell the difference between native advertising and editorial. Marketers have a responsibility to be transparent to maintain trust, and they must play a lead role in working with publishers to ensure proper disclosure.”
– by Liz Morrell