If you’ve been running an eCommerce business, chances are that you started off with Facebook and Google ads. These options are excellent when your business is still in the startup stages. Typically, entrepreneurs looking for economical marketing strategies choose to go with social media platforms. But, now that your startup is established and you’re ready to scale up operations, you’ll need native advertising. This marketing strategy has multiple advantages besides being a legit method to boost profitability. Read ahead to learn more about how you can use native ads to gain traction for your eCommerce company.
Understanding What is Native Advertising
Let’s start by talking about what precisely native ads are. While you’ll see these ads everywhere on the internet, you may not be able to discern them as ads. Should you browse news sites, you’ll find them at the bottom of the pages when you scroll down. Look for the Outbrain or Taboola logo, and you’ll spot the promotional pieces. The interesting thing about these pieces is that they are entirely different from social media ads–Facebook, TikTok, or Instagram. Although native advertising has advantages, you’ll want to affirm that it’s a good fit for you before adopting this strategy. Native ads work well for certain products, but might not be suitable for others.
Social Media Platforms and Native Advertising Target Distinct Audiences
Social media platforms not only cater to a whole distinct audience, but their intent is also different. When users browse social media, they’re looking for entertainment or something to do, particularly when they’re killing time. Like, when waiting for a bus or subway. People quickly scroll through the pages until something interesting catches their eye. But, when readers visit news sites, they’re in the reading mode and open to information. When they spot an interesting piece–which could be a native ad–they will take the time to read through it attentively.
Native Ads Convert Cold Audiences into Hot Leads
Native advertising does not target a particular audience. Even so, the right audience will likely jump automatically to the relevant topics and, consequently, into the proper funnel. Potential customers naturally and seamlessly convert and transition from a cold audience into hot leads. That’s because, after reading the information, they consciously decide whether they want to travel the funnel. Users can click on the Call to Action button, and follow the prompts until they finally purchase the advertised product.
With social media ads, the audience is fully aware that what they are looking at is a promotion. Every ad has a logo, brand name, product image, and pricing. If readers like what they see, they can click on the ad and go to the order page. Next, they can reach the vendor’s site and finalize the purchase. The content is typically user-generated and comes naturally. But, the fact also remains that not every user wants to see ads, and they can quickly become an annoyance. Not so with native advertising. That’s because readers can actively and consciously choose whether or not they want to read the ad by clicking on it.
Native Ads Involve Slick Copywriting Skills
When readers click on a native ad, they are not directed to a product page. Instead, they see an editorial piece packed with valuable and relevant information. The piece appears as a blog, article, or news feature and is essentially legit copywriting–but with a sales message. The trick is to present the sales copy so artfully, that it generates the maximum CTR or Click Through Rates. That’s exactly what the folks at Purple Black do. They have a dedicated team of expert copywriters who can create editorials and advertorials. These pieces subtly depict the product's benefits and why it is an excellent buy.
Creating native advertising editorials is an intricate process that needs careful execution. That’s because, copywriters must use not only effective marketing tactics, but also infuse psychological hints in their ads. Writers must understand how people think and their behavioral patterns, and then determine how they perceive advertising interruptions. That’s how they ensure high CTAs or Click Through Rates and higher conversions.
Audiences Follow the Funnel to the Order Page
Once the reader consumes the information on the page, they click through and reach the landing page. This page presents all the relevant details about the product and its features, along with the pricing. Readers can learn about the benefits of the product and why it’s a great buy. This page can also build that critical trust with the customer, so they are convinced they need the product. And, must buy it right away. Unlike social media ads that are interest-based, native advertising builds interest. The advertorial evokes interest in the readers' minds as they scroll through the piece.
Native Ads Marketing is Ideal for eCommerce Products – No Retargeting Needed.
Essentially, native ads are a longer funnel, but they are a great advertising strategy for eCommerce startups. Primarily because they have the potential to convert an entirely cold audience–who has never heard about the product–into a ready-to-buy audience. Moreover, since the leads are ready to place an order, native advertising does not need retargeting strategies. You won’t need to add multiple touchpoints to convince readers to buy the product. Each native ad strategy focuses on conversions with the first click and eliminates the need for retargeting.
Of course, getting sales through retargeting is an additional bonus and nice to have. But, not the main objective. The folks at Purple Black design ad campaigns that are profitable from the very first click and touch point. The editorial page presents relevant information about the product and its many benefits and infuses additional marketing tactics. Like, for instance, a sense of urgency, the Fear of Missing Out (FOMO), and more. Since native advertising is about getting readers to place orders immediately, it is the ideal strategy for eCommerce products.
Targetted Audience is Different in Native Advertising
Yet another facet of native advertising is the targetted audience age group. Unlike the audience on social media platforms like TikTok or Instagram, native ads target readers from the older age bracket. For instance, the typical reader is at least 28 years with no upward limit. Native ad campaigns could even target readers as old as 60, 70, or even 80 years old. If your eCommerce business sells products designed for the younger generation, going with social media advertising might be more advisable.
However, if you sell products with higher price points, you’ll use native ad strategies. That’s because, the typical audience is older and has a higher income with more purchasing power. You might also be able to sell more expensive products without the need for aggressive advertising. Further, even if you are presenting an entirely new product or never-seen-before brand, you could successfully grow your eCommerce business. All you need is native advertising.
Expect to Allocate a Higher Marketing Budget
As an eCommerce business owner thinking of experimenting with native ads, you should prepare for a high marketing budget. You’ll have to allocate a higher spend on native advertising than all social media sites. The first step is finding an agency with a proven track record of promoting startups profitably. As explained above, designing advertorials is an intricate process. Further, you’ll need expert guidance on how to set the bid rate and determine the proper funnel. These processes are entirely different from social media, and you’ll need the right team to assist you.
Working with the Experts is Advisable
Accordingly, you’ll pick an agency with the experience and expertise to make native advertising work for you. They will run multiple campaigns using the appropriate triggers that are sure to work. Don’t make the mistake of trying the same strategies you might use for Facebook, TikTok, or YouTube. Native advertising is a whole different ball game and typically has a more extended testing phase which is also more expensive.
Let’s try an example.
Experimenting and testing, say, Facebook ads, is quickly done. You can set up and post campaigns by spending just $10 per day, and have them running smoothly. However, if you want to run a native ad campaign, you’ll need a new customized campaign for each product. You’ll also design a new campaign for each country where you want to advertise and each device where you want to run the ad.
For instance, you’ll create a specific campaign for a US-based audience using mobile phones and tablets. And a new one for American audiences browsing on their laptops. For every campaign, you can expect to spend at least $80 per day. So, if you wish to promote a single product across two different devices, you’ll spend at least $160 per day.
Native Advertising Involves Two Critical Facets
The above example indicates two crucial factors to be aware of when running native ads. For one, you’ll need a higher marketing budget; secondly, you should expect to run campaigns over an extended time. Only then can you hope to gather adequate data points to determine if the ad is working well. Further, you’ll run native ads on not just a single platform, but on multiple websites targeting multiple readers. Your ads will have a broader reach across the internet, possibly in worldwide locations. And, that’s how you can get traffic from a much wider range of sources.
The experts at Purple Black reveal that native ads need at least six to eight weeks of testing and gathering data. After this time, you can evaluate the campaign's success and work out other strategies to scale it further.
Business owners wanting to try native advertising should know that it is unsuitable for startups. This marketing strategy works well for more established eCommerce businesses looking to scale their operations. Start off small with social media platforms and test your products with a smaller, younger audience. That’s where you can experiment with different approaches and gather data that can prove invaluable when you move to native ads. You can then scale your business and target new funnels using platforms like Taboola and Outbrain. At this point, native ads can help you lower your Cost Per Action (CPA) or Cost Per Lead (CPL).
To conclude, the right time to dive into native advertising is when you have a bigger marketing budget for your eCommerce business. When you think you can allocate $1K, $2K, and $10K and more, that’s the time to experiment with native ads.
Do you have more questions about whether native ads are a good fit for your business? We invite you to check out the resources we’ve put together. Click here, and you can download some in-depth information on how to use this marketing strategy for your eCommerce business. You can also visit us at Purple Black and sign up for a free consultation.