Being an online publisher these days is not for the faint of heart.
The online landscape is changing so quickly that most publishers can hardly keep up. As soon as they think they have a solid content strategy, SEO strategy, or advertising strategy, something changes that undermines everything that was working before.
There are constant obstacles to overcome, so it is important that you are proactive in monitoring changes in the market and respond to them quickly. Here’s a look at some of the current publishers pain points and some suggestions for how to overcome them:
Ad blockers are one of the biggest obstacles for brands reaching their audiences last year. There are so many people using ad blockers – and preventing the ads from even showing – that brands are losing billions of dollars per year thanks to the software.
For publishers, this means a significant loss of advertising revenue. Advertisers aren’t going to pay you if they don’t get results from your site, and if you have a pay-per-click model, you aren’t going to get anything.
One way that publishers have found to get around ad blockers and to generate the revenue they need is to use native advertising instead. Native ads are designed to mimic the look and feel of the site, so they blend right in with the editorial content, and they don’t tend to attract the notice of ad blockers.
Native ads are also more engaging to users, who are more likely to stop and read the ads and to explore what the brand has to offer.
There are some tool that is a great solution for native ads, since the program automatically places these ads after analyzing user-intent signals. The ads are placed to appeal to the right user at the right time, dependent on location, device and browser being used, language, interests, and other signals.
By using In-Feed, publishers can ensure that the ads they are showing on their sites are the right ones for their users, increasing the clicks and conversions they get and maximizing their revenue.
The Internet of Things
The Internet of Things is exciting for consumers, but it presents many challenges for advertisers and publishers.
Consumers get to connect more of their information and make it easier to do the things they want. For example, they may be able to ultimately connect all their purchases so that they can easily see what they’ve ordered in the past for re-ordering.
More and more personal devices are going online, such as personal home assistants, virtual reality headsets, smart watches, and smart glasses. Each of these devices is collecting and storing information, and eventually, they will all be able to connect in the cloud.
How do advertisers and publishers reach people when they are in so many virtual places? They aren’t just going to web pages for the information they need.
Using placement programs can help publishers reach more of their audience. The right programs will analyze the device being used and how people are using them to deliver the right ads. Brands can become part of such ad programs to get their message on more devices, as well.
More Mobile Users
Mobile users are quickly becoming the dominant online demographic. In the future, their numbers will be even greater.
Mobile devices will grow beyond smart phones and tablets. They will include a wide variety of personal devices, and people will use them all to go online in some capacity or another.
Advertisers and publishers face unique challenges when trying to reach mobile users because of the smaller screens on mobile devices and because of the different browsing behaviors of mobile users. Most people who use mobile devices are on the go and want information in a hurry.
Publishers must have a solution for showing ads that fit the screen size appropriately, as well as for capturing the limited attention of this market and engaging them quickly.
Native ads are a great solution for mobile advertising, as well, since they fit in with the editorial environment and do not take away from the user experience. Native ads also offer more opportunities to engage audiences who are on the go and are looking for more substantial information.
Advertisers and publishers have a lot of challenges ahead of them. Today’s online users have a more scattered presence since there are literally billions of websites online and there are dozens of devices they might be using to access those websites.
Today’s users are also savvier than ever, and they can recognize an ad a mile away and have many strategies for avoiding ads. Native advertising and smart placement programs that analyze user-intent signals help to overcome this challenge, but publishers must use all the tools at their disposal. Stay proactive in learning about the online environment and in creating new strategies, and you should remain competitive.