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Posts Tagged ‘Native Advertising’

Freelance Journalist Confesses Their Native Advertising Sins

ShutterstockWastepaperMoneyBasketThe latest installment of Digiday’s “Confessions” series could not be timelier. It features a veteran freelance feature writer who has had to cross over to the sponsored-content side to earn a decent living.

On the plus side, the unidentified individual says they’re making $500 a day and, as a result, are chipping away at some accumulated debt. On the down side, the client stories being passed on are consistently “lowest common denominator.”

From the Q&A with Lucia Moses:

You don’t want your real name used on the native ad pieces. Is that [lowest common denominator aspect] why?

Because it’s not work I’m proud of. It’s not anything remotely interesting. But I was at [a major news organization] and didn’t put my name on many stories. If I were writing stories for dumb women’s magazines, I wouldn’t want my name on many stories, either.

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John Oliver on Banner Ads

There are many memorable sound bytes in John Oliver‘s 11-minute rant about native advertising from this weekend’s Last Week Tonight.

FishbowlNY particularly enjoyed Oliver’s take on the waning effectiveness of Web banner ads:

“One study found we only intentionally click on banner ads less than two-tenths of one percent of the time.”

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Condé Nast Drafts Native-Ad Conflict Resolution Doc

CondeNastLogoThe brave new world of native advertising has an intriguing road map. Per Ad Age‘s Michael Sebastian, senior editorial staff at Condé Nast are currently reviewing a 4,000-word draft document:

The document’s aim is to give publishers and editors who might clash over native ads a quick reference guide to solve any disputes, the executives say. “There are things in there editors won’t like, and things in there that publishers won’t like,” one editor said.

Another one of Sebastian’s sources for the article gets a little bit ahead of proper native context by comparing the document to the Great Charter of the Liberties of England, sealed under oath by King John in 1215. Describing the Condé Nast document as “a Magna Carta for native ads” is hilariously grandiose.

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WSJ Launches Native Advertising

wsjSponsored content, native advertising, ads that are annoyingly similar to editorial content — whatever you want to call them, they’re coming to The Wall Street Journal. Welcome to the party.

The paper has announced that WSJ Custom Studios will create the ads labeled as “Sponsor Generated Content,” and they’ll be embedded among other editorial content. The first native ads, from Brocade, will debut tomorrow. Each ad will be created by staffers hired specifically for WSJ Custom Studios. No Journal staffer will be involved in the ads.

The move isn’t surprising. More media companies are participating in native advertising every day. The New York Times said it was getting into the game last December. The problem with the sponsored ads is that some people view them as deceptive; that they’re designed to intentionally confuse the reader. Gerard Baker, editor of the Journal, doesn’t think that will be an issue.

“Our readers trust us, and the WSJ Custom Studios team has created clear and thorough labeling guidelines around the advertiser’s content in order to protect that trust,” he explained, in a statement. “I am confident that our readers will appreciate what is sponsor-generated content and what is content from our global news staff.”

Shape Labels Ad for Shape Product as ‘News’

Adco-superJumboThe September issue of Shape contained what should be known as “Exactly How Not to Do Native Advertising.” The New York Times reports that the magazine published a full page article titled “Water Works!” with the label “News.” The problem: It was definitely not news. In fact, the article was just an ad for Shape branded drinks called Shape Water Boosters.

The article/ad cited a few studies about how unhealthy sugary drinks are, but added that some people don’t like the way water tastes. What’s the solution? Why Shape Water Boosters, of course! “Just a single squeeze (equal to a half-teaspoon) adds delicious flavor — but not calories — along with a concentrated punch of nutrients that offer some important bonus benefits,” explained the ad.

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NY Times Lays Out Plan for Native Ads

The New York Times is set to dip into the native advertisement game, so the paper’s publisher, Arthur Sulzberger, has explained how, exactly, it would do that.

The issue with sponsored content is that it often seems to blur the lines between editorial content and advertising. When an ad looks exactly like an article, it can create confusion among readers. However, Sulzberger wrote in a memo to staffers that there would be a “strict separation between the newsroom and the job of creating content for the new native ads.”

The Times will distinguish native ads by placing a blue border around them, along with a colored bar and a “Paid Post” notification. The sponsored content will begin in January on the home page and other popular sections of NYTimes.com. The number of paid posts — created by the ad department — will be small, at least at first.

It’s unfortunate that the Times even has to take the native ads route, but that’s how things go now. Running the best newspaper in the world takes a lot of money, and sponsored content is an easy way to bring in heaps of it.

Gerard Baker Does Not Like Native Advertising

Gerard Baker GGerard Baker, editor-in-chief of Dow Jones and The Wall Street Journal’s managing editor, is not a fan of native advertising. Capital New York reports that during an Advertising Week discussion, Baker repeatedly slammed the ad units.

At one point, Baker even compared companies using native advertising to Faust, the legendary character who traded his soul to the devil in exchange for unlimited intelligence and other pleasures. Yes, it gets that deep at Advertising Week.

Baker said that sponsored content or native ads blur the line between editorial and ads — a common complaint — and added that in the end, it’s a lose/lose situation:

An advertiser wants to advertise in The Wall Street Journal to be seen and to be associated with a brand like The Wall Street Journal, or The Financial Times or Bloomberg, because those news organizations are respected. If [advertisers] manipulate the digital or print operations of those news organizations, it makes the reader confused as to what is news and what is advertising, and the reader’s trust, the very reason that those advertisers want to advertise in those news organizations, goes away.

Forbes Chief Product Officer Shares a Spectacular Graph

Lewis Dvorkin has an intriguing follow-up to last week’s David Carr article about the increasing role being played on the Web by native advertising, for which he was interviewed. The Forbes chief product officer shares a bunch of Forbes Web stats, but it’s the graphic below that really caught FishbowlNY’s attention:

ForbesMagSalesGraph

Not only has Forbes‘ digital audience grown by leaps and bounds over the past few years with Dvorkin nurturing an ever-expanding blog network. More recently, per the Alliance for Audited Media (AAM) figures above, newsstand sales have increased 17.5% in the first half of 2013 as compared to the same period a year ago.

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