First, What Happened to Native Ads
We have spent a lot of time working on native ads for the native ad industry to throw us a huge curveball. Several months ago, many of the larger native ad networks (ie Taboola, Outbrain, etc) made a NAZI-style change in their terms which basically killed the ”BuzzFeed-style website” fad.
Basically, to advertise on the large native ad networks now, you must sign an exclusive contract to place their widget on your website. If you place any competing native ad-widget (outside of Google), your campaign will be denied.
How This Anti-Competitive Practice Is Killing Arbitrage Sites
For all the native arb-ers (BuzzFeed-style sites) to make money, they had to arbitrage between different ad networks. But if you are buying and selling to the same network, you are always going to lose especially when you have to sign an exclusive agreement with one network, no matter what they decide to pay you.
How This Anti-Competitive Practice Is Killing New Native Ad Networks
Publishers are now forced to choose one of the 2 big native networks if they have any hopes of getting large amounts of traffic. This leaves other smaller native ad networks suffering because they cannot deliver the same traffic and the arb-ers are drying up faster than ice cream in a desert.
Our Solution? Invent A New Type of High-CTR Ad Format.
While we may revisit native ads in the future should the industry leaders relax their policies, we have been testing many other types of ads and found one that works extremely well on all platforms, even BETTER than native ads … we call it the Responsive Alert Dialog Ad and it’s coming here soon. Subscribe to our newsletter to receive the latest updates and to be one of the first people to know when this new ad format is live.