Native advertising is supporting content marketing, and is taking the world by storm. By 2021, the new format is expected to account for nearly three-quarters of all online advertising spend, with Asia-Pacific taking the lead as the fastest-growing region (on track to reach $14B by 2020).

Native can encompass any branded message that provides similar value to users as the organic items that surround it. This can include videos, slideshows, mobile apps, products, and more, depending on what kind of website a user is visiting.

In a single month, Taboola alone has recorded over 3.1 Billion pages worth of content consumption in native advertising from South East Asia, with Indonesia consuming 734 million of those pages and the Philippines consuming 445 million through our network.

Marketers who intend to scale with precision should consider how discovery will play into their marketing mix, especially within markets like Singapore where according to ComScore we reach 90% of the internet, Malaysia, where we reach 80% of the internet.

With this reach, native campaigns can certainly increase brand awareness, but they can also be optimized to drive performance further down the funnel, including lead-generation and new purchases.

For brands facing exorbitantly priced costs per click (CPCs) on search or social platforms, these strategies may be the only cost-effective way left to acquire and engage consumers across the web. The trick is to know how to match your goals with the right content and the right context.

Distribute content on the open web: that’s where South East Asia users engage.

Content marketing coupled with distribution via content discovery has become a powerful way for brands to reach consumers across the open web, through native recommendations on highly-trafficked publisher sites.

Advertiser partners have found that these content discovery clicks are often more valuable than comparable clicks that occur within a busy social newsfeed.

Consumers that are reading an article on a publisher website tend to be in what we call “content consumption mode,” meaning they’re more likely to spend time on-site after clicking on a branded recommendation.

India’s three-minute average time-on-site is 50 percent higher than the global average, and Japan’s whopping average of 8 pageviews-per-session during peak periods is nearly double that of most countries.

In fact, APAC is one of our highest-performing regions in this regard, as outlined in our recent Global Readership Report.

Non-intrusive distribution formats for content drives higher returns for advertisers.

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The shift towards native is driven by the fact that consumers are increasingly ignoring traditional ad formats, such as banners or pre-rolls, which often detract from the user experience.

Delivering messages through non-intrusive, opt-in formats, ensures that a brand’s promotional budgets are spent only on those consumers who have actively expressed an interest in their product or service.

Native is new territory for many marketers, especially those across South East Asia targeting consumers who only recently acquired their first smartphone. The key is to first identify what post-click actions are most important for your business, and then work backwards from there.

Marketers looking to increase sales might experiment with the strategy used by India-based educational company Flintobox, which promoted informational articles to educate audiences and drive subscriptions for its popular activity boxes for kids.

If top of funnel and mid funnel action is your goal, don’t just look at vanity metrics. Understand the key drivers behind your business on a digital front, and go from there.

Above and beyond eCommerce transactions, these are some of the high-value activities that marketers today are using discovery for:

  • Drive new sessions
  • Maximize repeat visitors
  • Increase Page View Consumption
  • Decrease bounce rates
  • Build out database (CRM) data

‘Native’ is quickly replacing social as the next major Feed.

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Some brands use personalized recommendations to promote a YouTube video for example, while others drive users to a mobile app download page, but more recent development in the native space has been the potential for these recommendations to move beyond static words and images and incorporate some of the best ideas popularized by social news feeds.

Earlier this year, we announced Taboola Feed, our plan to bring the user experience of the social feed to the open web, empowering brands with a better environment for users to engage with their content.

This modular user experience (UX) can incorporate any kind of media format that may be interesting to a user, from high-quality video players to comment threads to rotating carousels of relevant product recommendations.

As the competition for user attention online continues to heat up, many brands are finding that the only way to break through the noise is to create something of value for their target audience—whether that’s an article or a quiz or an infographic. Taboola Feed brings a better environment for distribution of this content.

Performance marketing is no longer only about search keywords, or social “likes,” but a mindset that can be applied to a variety of content marketing strategies. For many companies, especially those across the South East Asia region, this is an opportunity for first-mover advantage that’s still very much on the table.

Taboola is the world’s leading content discovery platform, serving 360B recommendations to over 1B unique visitors each month on the web’s most innovative publisher sites. To find out how we can support your content strategy, contact us or start your campaign now.

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