According to eMarketer predictions, native ad spending in the U.S. will grow 34 per cent in 2015 to reach US$4.3bn. Publishers from web startups like Buzzfeed to major newspapers including the New York Times and The Wall Street Journal now publish native ads, or sponsored articles that relate to the products, services, or interests of advertisers.
But when it comes to measuring success and return-on-investment from native ad campaigns, marketers and publishers say they’re still trying to figure out exactly what to track and why.
The lack of consensus on those questions was highlighted by a recent Association of National Advertisers survey, in which marketers reported using a wide range of metrics to judge their native ad campaigns. When asked which measurement is “most important,” respondents said everything from brand lift and awareness to click-throughs, social media sharing rates, time spent, purchase intent, lead generation and more.
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