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Native ad strategy lags in APAC

News, 19 April 2016

SINGAPORE: More than two-thirds of marketers using native advertising in Asia-Pacific do not have a specific strategy for the medium, an exclusive Warc report has revealed.

The "Native Advertising: Trend or Future?" report by Warc and content marketing agency King Content surveyed more than 300 advertising and marketing professionals from 16 Asia-Pacific markets on how they currently use native advertising, the challenges they face and their thoughts on the future of the medium.

Although a large majority of marketers believe investment in native advertising will increase significantly in the next five years, respondents lag behind when it comes to strategy.

More than two-thirds (69%) of respondents said they do not currently have a specific native advertising strategy in place, although 39% recognise the opportunities the medium offers brands and are working to put one in place.

Native advertising is considered by many to be a cost-effective way for brands to amplify their marketing efforts, particularly in a world where ad blocking is increasingly common and where consumers are often hostile to direct advertising.

According to the data, 31% of marketers are currently using native advertising as part of their marketing mix.

However, a lack of strategy and effective data to measure return on investment remain major hurdles that the industry must tackle to place native advertising alongside other platforms.

Brands may be hesitant to take the plunge into a medium with blurry measurement standards, or see the platform as a fad in a fast-changing landscape.

There are also signs that a lack of strategy could be a barrier to future investment in the platform, despite the fact that marketers are generally very positive about it.

"Marketers across the region believe native advertising presents big opportunities for their brands, and anticipate spending in the area to increase significantly in coming years," said Ed Pank, managing director of Warc Asia-Pacific.

"But there are also challenges. A lack of strategy and effective data to measure return on investment remain major hurdles that industry must tackle to place native advertising alongside other platforms."

Data sourced from Warc