- With advertising increasingly being blocked by users, brands need to rethink where and how they advertise.
- Integrating advertising into content is becoming a more popular avenue for brands looking to place their products and services in front of more users.
- Of course, this new approach is fraught with challenges that brands will have to navigate.
Advertising is what keeps many websites, including Hypertext, alive. In exchange for money, brands place their advertising on websites and platforms in hopes that folks will be intrigued enough to click a banner or link in an advertorial and make a purchase.
However, as advertising has spread over the internet it’s become incredibly pervasive and as such users have turned to using adblockers to make webpages easier to read and avoid video advertising on YouTube.
This means that advertisers need to rethink how they approach advertising including where they place that advertising.
“Viewers are now consuming their broadcast content in a number of ways and across multiple channels – not just linear TV. Streaming audiences are growing, and while many streamers are now starting to introduce advertising-funded subscription tiers, a great deal of streaming content is still without ads,” explains sales director at Reach Africa, Leslie Adams explains.
The director highlights that adverts that are baked into content have a far better chance of sticking with the viewer compared to blatant advertising during commercial breaks. This can take the form of product placement but there have been countless debates about how effective this is. If the placement is too subtle, it may not be noticed but on the opposite end of the spectrum, if the placement is too prominent it could wind up looking garish.
According to Adams, there are three major things advertisers should consider before they book ad-space.
Firstly, and perhaps most obviously, know the audience you’re targeting.
“You need to know what your target audience looks like; the content they’re consuming, and how they consume that content. Then, tap into these insights and find a way of delivering your message in a way that resonates with them,” says Adams.
Beyond this, an understanding of the platform is vital. Take YouTube as a prime example. A brand could place advertising on YouTube so that it appears before a video plays but this would be silly. For one, folks use adblockers and others subscribe to YouTube Premium so those users never see native advertising on YouTube. A far better solution would be to partner with content creators who can do an ad read or spot during their video. This practice has become incredibly common in recent years and brands like NordVPN, Raycon, SquareSpace and more have become household names thanks to partnerships with content creators.
“Understand the platform opportunities that exist, identify the ones that make the most sense for your brand and then figure out how to leverage these. For example, gaming – which sees a captive audience – offers an opportunity to insert your brand into this virtual world, such as an outdoor billboard on a football field or next to a racetrack – but, it needs to make sense for your brand,” Adams notes.
But we think that Adams’ final point is perhaps the most pertinent. Advertisers need to choose the right partner. A YouTube content creator who covers gaming, may not be the best fit for a brand advertising sports equipment but they may be a good fit for a new lifestyle brand aimed at young people.
Advertisers can of course do this work alone but a good partner will help bring insight gathered over years of work.
“The right brand integration partner will help you identify the best platforms and approach to connect with your audience, helping you get real return on your investment,” advises Adams.