Native advertising has already proved to be one of the most effective ways of engaging a brand’s audience in an advertising context. Since native ads are designed to blend into the existing content on a publisher’s website, they do not disrupt the user experience. Programmatic advertising, on the other hand, blends the power of data and technology to automate the ad buying process—enabling a brand to easily and affordably reach its audience.
Combine native and programmatic, and the result is programmatic native. When native ad units are combined with programmatic buying, brands are able to offer two things in their communication: relevance and personalization. Using programmatic buying, advertisers can make their native ads more relevant. Using the power of machine learning and contextual signals, programmatic native ads can be customized to both the user and the placement at scale, leading to enhanced performance for advertisers.
Benefits of programmatic native
Programmatic native—an efficient and effective channel to deliver customized ads at scale—is set to dominate the future of the digital ad industry. Here are some benefits at a glance:
- User engagement: By blending in with the publisher’s style and editorial content, native programmatic ads don’t disrupt the reader experience. People see ads that interest, not interrupt them, resulting in better engagement.
- Brand safety: Although programmatic ads have made headlines for quality issues, not all programmatic ads are unsafe; and especially, not native. In fact, in the wake of the YouTube scandal in 2017—when ads were found to be appearing alongside inappropriate and extremist content—native’s ties to brand safety made it an enticing value proposition for marketers.
- Dynamic Creative Optimization (DCO) in native ad campaigns is a powerful new tactic: Brands have always executed DCO programmatically, personalizing every creative for a user based on gender, location, time of day, browsing behavior, media consumption habits, and more. Now the ability to utilize DCO in native ad campaigns is a powerful, new tactic. It enables brands to customize each component of a native ad—thumbnail, headline, URL, description text—to the individual user and maximize the impact of every impression. While typically DCO requires advertisers to develop completely new creatives for each instance, dynamic native ads require fewer tweaks and optimizations to these different components. For example, writing an extra headline is far easier than creating an entirely new banner asset.
- Efficiency: Programmatic native allows brands to reach a larger audience across multiple websites resulting in more efficiency.
Programmatic native adoption remains slow
Despite the potential programmatic native offers for large-scale ad trading and reader-friendly native ads, its adoption remains slow. One reason for this is that native programmatic is still in its infancy. Even measuring the performance of programmatic native is still evolving. Additionally, programmatic native remains hampered by industry confusion about what it can offer advertisers and publishers. As programmatic native continues to evolve, and marketers realize the value it holds, it will open up new possibilities for brands to reach consumers with native ads at scale, and push the era of annoying ads further and further in the ad industry’s past.