According to Sharethrough, native advertising is “a form of paid media where the ad experience follows the natural form and function of the user experience in which it is placed.” Native ads often match the visual and functional design of the media they live in, meaning that users might not know that they are advertisements at first glance. Native advertising has been around for a long time, but is gaining increased traction with the rise of social ads, sponsored publication content, and more.

Native ads generate more engagement and drive more sales than traditional ads, and may be a great option to consider as a financial advisor. Here, we will cover some of the most common types of native ads and how to get started on your own sponsored content.

Types of Native Advertisements

Depending on the industry and media form, there are many different types of native advertisements. Some of the most common include:

  • Promoted articles on a news site, such as Investopedia or Investment News. Often times, these posts are written in a similar voice as the publication and sport a small “sponsored” tag.
  • Sponsored social media posts, which disguise themselves as a regular share or post. An example of this is when brands create social media campaigns around an article written by a third party that features their company.
  • Content that subtly references a company without being solely dedicated to being about their products. For example, a recipe might feature a certain brand of butter or flour.
  • An influencer paid to mention a product in a blog, video, or other publication.

Native ads range in cost, depending on the viewership, traction, and type and there are always new types of native advertising emerging. It may be worth getting a few quotes on native advertising opportunities in your area or online.

Qualities of a Good Native Advertisement

While native ads are great for getting in front of more people and working around ad trackers, if done wrong they can come off as sleazy or tricky. Like most content marketing, the best native ads don’t draw all the attention to themselves, but instead offer valuable content and insight to the reader.

Native ads should also seamlessly blend into the content around them. One of our advisors, Jagruti Panwala of Wealth Protection Strategies, regularly blogs for a magazine of an organization she is involved in. The audience is one of her niche markets, hotel owners, so the information she shares is fitting and relevant to the publication.

How to Get Started

Native advertising doesn’t have to be an expensive, cumbersome process and there might be some great avenues right in your backyard.

First, think about the types of ads you have the budget and bandwidth for. If you are looking to post regular sponsored blogs on your local financial magazine’s website, for example, you will need someone to write those blogs or dedicate time yourself to do it. If you want to stick with social posts, set a budget for promoted Tweets and Facebook posts, see how far it takes you, and adjust accordingly. There are also many services that can place native ads for you, which might be a good option if you don’t have any media contacts you can utilize.

Native ads have higher levels of engagement than traditional ads, further content marketing strategies, and reach a wide variety of audiences. But as always, check with your broker-dealer or home office on their regulations with advertising and published content.