Native advertising platforms are a dime a dozen these days. Tens, if not hundreds, of SaaS companies have jumped on board to ride the growth wave of native advertising, and the market has borne them readily as both brands and publishers eagerly pursue greater web traffic and awareness.
The native advertising ecosystem is broader than most people realize. As explained in the Media Buyer’s Guide to Sponsored Content, there’s quite a variety of sub-groups—from paid search units and recommendation widgets (which most people are familiar with) to in-feed units and promoted listings (which are generally more foreign to marketers and less clearly defined).
But for each interrelated subsection under the umbrella of native advertising, there are at least a handful of SaaS companies that are vying for the skyrocketing budgets of brands which, according to CMO.com, are expected to grow by 24 percent to $1.9 billion in the US by the end of this year.
Sponsored editorial content, a rapidly growing segment of in-feed native advertising, is one that has been particularly difficult for brands, publishers, and SaaS companies to wrap their heads around. Difficulties regarding authorship, topical matter, publishing, on-site appearance, and payment have kept most brands sidelined and, consequentially, most publishers from reaping the full benefits of this relatively new revenue stream.
NewsLauncher, the world’s first pure sponsored editorial content platform, recently set out to tackle that challenge and its SaaS product is among the best in the industry, even in its infancy.
The new NewsLauncher platform was created with both marketers and publishers in mind. For marketers, it takes the formerly complicated process of securing editorial media placements and makes it simple. For publishers, it opens up the floodgates of a new revenue channel as brand marketers shell out growing amounts of cash for access to valuable audiences through trusted names.
The NewsLauncher platform creates the most collaborative and transparent process for sponsored editorial content placements to date. It’s easy to get started. Once you sign up for an account (they’re free, by the way), you can monitor the progress of your articles from your home page. The five-step process is simple: create a pitch, pitch it, collaborate with a journalist to write it, review it and publish it.
The workflow for pitch creation is revolutionary on its own. After filling out basic information about your brand (or the brand you’re representing), a single click will allow you to select the media outlet you’d like to get published in. After writing a topic summary and filling out main points for the article to touch on, you’re ready to pitch.
The pitching experience on NewsLauncher is also something new to digital marketers. You’ll have two options: pitching an earned editorial story or a sponsored editorial story.
An earned editorial story is free to pitch, regardless of the media outlet. However, this option puts the ball in the publisher’s court. The story angle could be adapted based on the media outlet’s desire and there’s no guarantee when your story will get placed, or even if it will get placed at all. However, with a compelling angle, it’s likely your story will see some action in the near future.
For sponsored editorial stories, the process is about as straightforward as it could be. Pricing is clearly disclosed, pickup from the media outlet is guaranteed, and the production process from that point onward is collaborative (a journalist will write the story but you’ll get final sign-off on it). Added perks include free earned media via social shares when the article is published and a notification of the publication date.
It has been found that the less an advertisement looks like an advertisement and the more it looks like an editorial, the more readers stop, look and read.
— David Ogilvy, the “Father of Advertising”
This statement still rings true today, and companies like NewsLauncher are paving the way for brands to collaborate with publishers in a way that creates highly visible content that is less biased, yet more compelling. This is not just the future of sponsored content, but the future of advertising, and it likely won’t be long before sponsored editorial content platforms are a dime a dozen as well.
Brands that learn to embrace sponsored content will quickly become some of the practice’s biggest advocates and some of their industry’s biggest names. If you’re new to sponsored content, it’s time to get your feet wet—and NewsLauncher is a great place to start.
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