The Five Elements of a Successful Native Ad Campaign

July 5, 2016 | by Hana-Lee Sedgwick

Just as five feng shui elements can help you to balance your environment, five native ad elements can help you to place your campaign on the road to success. Native Advertising provides an opportunity to reach, engage and build a relationship with prospects in ways traditional ads simply can’t. Although the nature of native ads is to seamlessly blend in and appear native to the page—hence the name—the goal is to encourage consumer interaction in a less invasive, more impactful way that benefits both the consumer and brand.

A successful native ad campaign should inform, be authentic, stay relevant, engage, and ultimately convert. That’s a tall order, but it’s absolutely doable! Below, we’ve outlined key elements for creating a native ad campaign that will enhance a user’s experience rather than disrupt it, ultimately earning you engaged consumers and better results in the long run.


Five Elements of a Successful Native Ad Campaign:

1. Use A Compelling Headline to Provide Value

Think of your ad headline as a way to provide value to your target audience. Generating relevant, quality content naturally leads to more conversions because it engages readers in a way that’s attractive and memorable to them. As we mentioned in our previous post on creating a strong native ad headline, use a concise headline that will resonate with consumers based on the context of where the ad appears. More relevant content = more receptive audiences = a more successful campaign.

2. The Image Shouldn’t be an Afterthought

A strong native ad starts with a compelling headline AND an eye-catching image. Don’t just focus on the headline and leave the image to chance. After all, a picture is worth a thousand words, right? A strong image should capture attention, inform, and engage; a poor image can send out the wrong message and confuse users. Not all images are created equal, so be sure to check out our best practices for choosing an effective native ad image.

3. Stay Informative and/or Entertaining

Effective native ads should not only stand out, but also encourage interaction by being genuinely engaging. Connect with your audience by using relatable, funny, or entertaining content. By triggering an emotional response—be it on a funny, deep, or personal level—consumers are more likely to engage and be legitimately interested in your brand.

4. Align Your Ad to the Destination Page

The last thing a consumer wants is to find themselves clicking on an ad that directs them to something completely unrelated. For example, an ad with tips for brides-to-be which takes users to a page with lawn care supplies is clearly misleading and annoying, for multiple reasons. When the native ad and subsequent content aren’t aligned, there’s no faster way to lose a user’s trust. Attract quality traffic to your destination page by using content that delivers on its promise so there are no surprises or let downs—you’ll be more likely to build a relationship with the right type of audience and enhance your brand’s credibility. It’s a win-win!

5. Make Sure Your Content Matches the Consumer’s Journey

Native Advertising, because it does not deliberately sell to readers, is a powerful way to have a true conversation with customers. And if we’re being honest, it’s just a much politer way of promoting content. Carefully consider every component of the ad campaign during the consumer’s journey to ensure it resonates with your audience each step of the way; a great native ad has the power to enhance your brand’s image and reel people in without actually selling your product or service. The goal is to engage readers by being relevant and building a foundation of trust, then sequence the content to drive them to the next phase in the buyer’s journey.


Of course, there is no one rule when it comes to producing the different elements of a successful native advertising campaign. Every brand is different, so it’s important to consider your target audience and to define your objectives before creating content that will be effective for every phase of the campaign.

Overwhelming? We don’t think it should be. That’s why Storygize's team of seasoned, performance-minded experts creates strategy that aligns with brand objectives, then executes in an iterative, evolving approach to ensure exposure to your audience where they consume relevant content. We A/B test your ad creative components and use story-sequencing techniques to guide the consumer’s journey.


Curious to learn more on this topic? Read: What Happens When the Native Ad and Content Aren’t Aligned? (Hint: Your Customer Won’t Be Stoked)


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Topics: Native Advertising, Best Practices