Ad networks have come a long way. This short video shows the evolution of ad networks and how the display ad market has evolved to become extremely sophisticated, with ad exchanges, programmatic, and real-time bidding. But of course the essence of these networks is to find the relevant target audiences for advertisers and maximize monetization for publishers. However, over time users have started ignoring banner ads, developing, what is called “banner blindness”. According to research “users focus only on the parts of the page where they assume the relevant information will be, small text and hyperlinks. Large, colorful or animated banners and other graphics are in this case ignored.”
To address this challenge, new online ad formats have emerged, with dozens of different ad types, such as floating ads, interstitial ads, and more. Some ad types combine rich media, while others try to use a more “content-like” approach. In parallel, some ad networks have also expanded their offerings to the video space, offering video ad formats such as video pre-rolls.
The cure for banner blindness – native advertising
Back in 2013 Mashable has published a survey saying that 34% of publishers intend to add native advertising to their sites. And in March 2014 eMarketer predicted that native advertising could become the new and important revenue stream for publishers and advertisers that could solve the otherwise “flat” online display ads industry. This strong trend makes sense, as advertisers and publishers are finding that native advertising, in its different forms, outperforms traditional display ads. This means that as time goes, larger portions of publishers’ banner space and the advertising budgets will be redirected to native advertising, creating a real threat to ad networks.
What does this mean for ad networks?
As the famous saying goes, “if you can’t beat them join them”. Ad networks who will be directly influenced by this trend can choose to turn the threat into an opportunity. Native advertising can be easily regarded as a natural extension of the ad networks’ current offerings; as just another type of advertising among the wide variety that most of them are offering today. Their unique position, between the advertisers and the publishers can be leveraged to harness this opportunity.
What should ad networks do?
Ad networks cannot just use existing native advertising solutions. If they want to be consistent with their current position in the supply chain, they should create their own native advertising network.
How can advertising networks create a native advertising network?
From the business perspective, many ad networks are well positioned to form a native advertising network – they have close relationships with both advertisers and publishers, and can leverage their market position by offering a full solution, which combines display ads, video ads, and now, native advertising.
From the technological perspective, ad networks can rapidly offer a native advertising solution by using my6sense’s ready-to-implement white-label native advertising platform. The my6sense platform supports both mobile and web native ads that are delivered programmatically, based on users’ preferences and tastes.
To learn more about my6sense’ white label native advertising platform – visit my6sense.com