Brands in India are changing the way they advertise – and for good reason. Consumers have changed the way they interact with online advertising, demanding an end to one-dimensional, intrusive, and meaningless display advertisements. Ad blockers are increasingly being used to block this type of advertising, and consumers have become savvy enough to know which ads to ignore even when viewable.
Consumers want change, and native advertising has gained much traction as a result over recent years. Look no further than the fact that native advertising drives 9% greater brand uplift compared to standard ads. What really influences consumers is its content – being reliable, engaging, and relevant to consumer needs. Especially with smartphone usage at its peak, content discovery has been incredibly impactful as a form of native advertising. People want quality content consumption, and native has become the emerging format for advertisers and publishers to drive traffic with contextual content.
With that said, let’s highlight some of the native trends that we should expect to dominate the market this year.
- Audience buying and targeting options
Advertisers are enjoying success with platforms like Outbrain, looking to scale and make their media buying more efficient by using a variety of targeting options on Outbrain’s dashboard. Among those options that advertisers are turning to is location-based targeting, which is generating great interest from real estate clients who want to sell their inventory at specific locations. While this target option may slightly increase the CPC for advertisers, it avoids any wastage of clicks outside that audience. For publishers, this increased CPC should come as good news, as it improves their RPM for more valuable ad inventory.
- Native ad buying consolidation
Advertisers are looking at various options to consolidate their native ad buying, either by asking for API integration with their platforms or by seeking out a single platform to buy from. With native driving digital ad growth, publishers remain to pick up from this quickly developing ad format while advertisers remain to captivate how native efficiently targets their intended interest groups. Native advertising generates higher purchase intention as readers are more accepting of relevant ads in comparison to traditional banner ads.
Outbrain is looking to launch Zemanta in India – a native DSP that integrates 50 native content networks. Together, both companies have the assets and scale to demonstrate how native advertising is the future of digital marketing in India.
- Programmatic video buying will increase
Video advertising is now the second fastest growing format in India with 28% yearly growth. Moreover, 120 million users in that market browse the Internet on their mobile with built-in ad blockers – demanding greater control of the content they interact with. It should, therefore, come as no surprise that native advertising has come into play for video as well. In keeping up with the need of the hour, smart brands are using native video formats that are user-initiated, and are taking it a step further with programmatic buying given the rise in automation. While programmatic video buying in India is still relatively new, we should expect it to gain a foothold in this space as more advertisers demand a way to reach audiences in real time, and publishers look to meet that demand through data-driven offerings.
Given the rise of mobile consumption, experts anticipate that 63.2% of mobile ad spend will be native by 2020, making up $53billion in advertising spend, and we should expect a large proportion of that ad spend to be on video.
- Performance buyers will invest more
41% of brands in India are currently using native because they know it is effective in driving brand exposure and purchase intent. It is proving to be a game-changer for brands to emotionally connect with their target audience, and as more brands reap its benefit, the bigger the growth in native ad spend. In fact, native ad buying is projected to hit $85.5 billion per year by 2020, and drive 74% of all advertising spend by 2021. Overall growth in native supply will increase alongside bigger performance budgets, as existing clients continually use the format and other advertisers join the fray. Brand content articles are already powerful for catching consumer attention and enticing engagement, and companies like Outbrain will continue to evolve the format and take it to the next level.
- Supply will increase with overall growth in user consumption
Native advertising has proven to solve the problem for both advertisers and publishers. It helps tackle the problem of ad blindness and provides a seamless consumer experience as an innovative format, offering publishers the chance to boost their traffic and attract new audiences. Today, it is estimated that 90% of Indian publishers offer – or plan to offer – native ad campaigns, which just goes to show the emergence of the format. Supply will meet the demand, as native continues to prove its power in striking the perfect balance between brand message and editorial guidelines for the sake of a better consumer experience.
Authored Article by: Sandeep Balani, Head of India, Outbrain