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Learn the 4 Steps for Testing Native Social Media Ads in Their Natural Environment

 

 

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Appearances matter in the mobile advertising realm – to the tune of billions of dollars.

 

We’re talking about “native” advertising – ads designed to fit in with surrounding non-ad content, increasing the chances that mobile audiences will pay attention.

 

The Interactive Advertising Bureau defines it as “a format…that takes advantage of the form and function of the surrounding user experiences…indigenous to mobile devices.” And native advertising is a very big deal, according to a Facebook-commissioned study on the rising importance of native mobile display ads:

  • By 2020, brands and companies are expected to spend $53.4 billion worldwide on native mobile display ads, accounting for 49% of all digital display advertising.
  • Advertisers will spend $8.9 billion worldwide and $3.9 billion in North America on native display ads placed in mobile apps, as opposed to on websites.

Those are very big bets, and just as they do in more traditional advertising channels such as TV, radio and print, brands will need to test their mobile campaigns — an essential preliminary step to take if they hope to take full advantage of the native opportunities mobile advertising presents.

 

Until now there has been no reliable way to accomplish this – it has been a matter of launching the campaign and then trying to measure its effectiveness after the fact. But a new method called Emotional Brand Connections Social Media Ad Testing fills that need – and its concept is identical to the thinking behind native advertising. It turns a test ad into a native ad that shows up naturally in research panelists’ social media news feeds – where it’s undifferentiated from all the regular content that surrounds it. Here’s how EBC Social Media Ad Testing works:

  • Identify consumers your campaign is targeting and match those characteristics against the members of a million-member active panel who take surveys in the same manner they typically get their social media content – by using a mobile app.
  • Place the test ad in the social media feeds of your targeted consumers.
  • Collect passive data that records how recipients respond to the native test ad. Get insights into whether the content is sparking positive behaviors such as clicking on the ad, turning on its audio, and liking or sharing it.
  • Send a survey to test recipients to obtain insights into crucial success indicators, including ad recall, opinions about the test ad’s content and concept, and whether the ad drives interest and an intent to purchase.

The bottom line is that advertisers now have a direct, natural pathway to timely insights into how their social media ads are likely to be received. If the test panel gives thumbs way up on the content and concept, brands can launch their campaigns with confidence. If there’s room for improvement, they’ll know it while there’s still time to make adjustments that will maximize the social media campaign’s appeal and effectiveness. Consumers’ social media feeds are a space where today’s advertisers need to be – and it only makes sense to test campaigns with the same native approach that will allow them to succeed once they’re launched. For more information, just contact us at sales@mfour.com.