Native, both in terms of content distribution and plain old advertising is the hot buzzword de jour. And, especially in terms of content distribution the reason it’s so compelling is that in this era of shortened attention spans and 140 character content, it actually delivers what the customer/prospect is seeking: A clear exposition of the offer without the overtly apparent theatricality of conventional advertising.

Native puts the message right where the reader is already reading; no need to take the attention away to the periphery. [Native has none of the jarring qualities of a pop-up. It doesn’t interrupt the reader.] And native placement of content, when done right, gives the reader more of what they actually came there seeking … information and insight.

If the basic concept of “native” weren’t enough, technology is adding a few real bonuses for us:

Simplified Distribution at Scale. Rather than negotiate placement by placement (or simply spray and pray), networks are emerging that offer the media buyer the ability to place branded content just as he/she would a conventional ad, in exactly the right places and not at all in the wrong ones. More and more publishers and media properties are embracing native and are receptive to the idea of native content marketplaces.

Simplified Conversion of Formats. Native means different things to different publishers. Yesterday it was an expensive and time consuming exercise to remake every piece of content to “fit” and look right in every potential venue from online to smartphone and tablet, often requiring lots of extra design and engineering time to create microsites and bespoke executions. Today technology does it for us … for free!

Simplified Programmatic Buying. This astounding bit of newness in the digital media universe (and coming soon to a television network near you), the idea of a simplified buying process based essentially on an auction and impactable by external data resources, gives the planners and buyers all the power they could ever imagine. And it becomes as simple and straightforward for smaller enterprises with the addition of a self-administered buying platform combined with credit card acceptance.

With this kind of simplification native is becoming the new normal. So what’s holding you back from going native?

Jerry Shereshewsky, a DistroScale Advisor, has been at the leading edge for his entire 40+ year career. He may be the jerry+shereshewsky only executive in the digital arena to have created a new brand of soda pop (Mello Yello for The Coca-Cola Company) and he was the first person to conceptualize (and execute) a coffee-by-mail business (Gevalia Kaffe for Kraft Foods). He helped transform a nascent online entertainment company into a powerful digital marketing services company that became so attractive that Yahoo! ended  up acquiring it.

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