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IAB in the News

Chat with Eddy Whatt, Head of [email protected] NZ, on the topic of Native Advertising in NZ

Tue, 27 Oct 2015

Over the next couple of months, the IAB NZ’s Standards & Guidelines Council is out in the marketplace conducting a series of short interviews with key industry folk.

The concept is to ask the same four questions to a range of industry professionals working across agency, publisher, creative, and client facing roles.

We’re hoping to further the discussion and education around this topic.

It may identify a gap in thinking, perception and perhaps even process - and potentially help identify areas where the industry needs to work better together to help this category evolve here in NZ.

1. Is Native different to what you've done in the past?

Native lets you tell an integrated story, which is a more difficult to do with standard display formats. We’ve found this approach is good for clients who need to tell a story or educate the consumer in a more subtle manner – for example we have had some real success using Native for Huggies  where we wanted to showcase Huggies as being there for new mum as a helpful source of information on more than just nappies.

What people call Native is not necessarily new – clients and agencies have been integrating brand with content for decades.  What’s clear is that Native is a broad term with different people having a very different understanding of what Native is.  It can cover many things, from complex integrations to simple in-stream formats.

2. How is it a changing process?

It is adding significant process and time. This is primarily because there is little or no consistency between publishers. Even similar looking native solutions may work differently. For example one publisher may allow the piece to click through to the client’s site, whereas another may stipulate the audience must remain within the publishers content. This has made it difficult for us to always give our clients 100% accurate information up front. Educating the client can be hard where there are a wide range of native formats, all needing unique assets and behaving differently.

We’ve been hit with too many surprises from the Publishers.   For example we had a situation with one major NZ publisher where the formats have literally evolved as the campaign process progressed.   We need publishers to be 100% clear from the onset as to what’s needed and what’s delivered to create a smooth process.

On our side, we need to recognise that all clients aren’t necessarily a natural fit for native. For us it’s about identifying opportunities with client briefs where native may fit.

3. How is this changing the overall landscape?

At this moment in time, it is not having a dramatic effect on our clients digital activity.

However, some of the native styled formats that are achieved via the programmatic landscape, with their set formats, ability to optimise, and easy to understand purchase models will continue to grow.

4. What is the feedback from clients?

Clients can see the value in delivering messaging in a less obtrusive way.

However we have certainly seen situations where clients have become frustrated by the process. Again, this can sometimes reflect badly on the agency, so it’s critical that process becomes easier.

We had one campaign  in particular where we were incredibly proud of the end result, but it was just so difficult to get there.