For a long time now, whenever people have needed information, they have gone to a search engine and plugged in a few words related to what they wanted.
In the early days, we had AOL and Altavista. We still have a few options for search engines, but the most popular is Google, the king of all search.
In recent years, we have seen a significant change in the way people find information, thanks to new technology, new sites, and new behavioral models. Google has changed its algorithm numerous times to try to adapt to these changes and improve the user experience.
One of the biggest changes we’re seeing now is the rise of content discovery in place of using search. Here’s what you need to know:
Social media has played a big role in helping increase the influence of content discovery.
Many people now scroll the feed on their social networks to see what information people are sharing, not what they have to say in their status updates. After all, most status updates are about things like what people ate for lunch or the fender bender they just got into – not exactly riveting stuff.
Celebrities and comedians are just about the only people that others follow to see what they have to say.
It is important that you understand the role social media plays in content discovery and that you take advantage of that for your brand. Not only should you be focused on creating content that others will want to share, but you should also be curating content on your feed that will encourage others to see you as a valuable resource and then to follow you.
Even if you are sharing others’ content, having those followers means that when you do have your own content to share, you’ll have a bigger audience for it.
Content Discovery Tools
Content discovery tools are very useful for helping you to get more of your blog or site content in front of your intended audience.
You can either use these tools to promote your content within your own site or to promote your content on other sites (who sign up as publishers to earn advertising revenue).
The right content discovery tool can help you get much more exposure for your content. It helps users find content that they might not even know to search for because they didn’t know what was available.
With many users finding most of their content through a website home page, content discovery tools can really help you maximize your traffic.
In order for your content discovery tools to be really successful, you also need to implement an effective content marketing strategy.
To start, you need to create high-quality and engaging content. That means creating long-form and in-depth content that answers a user’s question or fills a need for them.
Other keys to creating engaging content include appealing to emotions, sharing personal stories and anecdotes, using entertaining language, and talking about topical or controversial issues.
You will also need to determine the best time to publish your content so that it reaches your intended audience at just the right time. You can learn this information through your online research, but you can also get useful information from your intent-based content discovery tool.
Finally, you will need to determine the best places to publish your content. For example, you might find that publishing certain content to your blog gets a better response on different days or different times of day than it does when you publish on social media.
Again, some of this information will be gleaned through trial and error, but some of it requires the right research and the right tools.
Using an intent-based tools give you a shortcut through some of that. The tool looks at all the data to determine the right time and platform for the content it recommends to ensure that it reaches the right users.
Content discovery can be an invaluable way for you to get your content in front of the right people. You need to use content discovery in addition to SEO to maximize your reach. Make sure you are using the right tools, to get the results you want and to grow your brand.
Of course, the content of your ads is critical to their success. Use the right appeals to emotion, the right calls to action, and the right rhetorical strategies and you’ll increase user engagement and motivate people to buy your product or service.
However, the format of your ads can be just as important as your content. For example, you can have the greatest copy in the world, but if it is presented as a dense block of text, few people are likely going to even read it.
Optimizing formats is essential to helping you get more from your advertising campaign. Here are a few ways you can do that:
Split testing is one of the most effective ways to strengthen any part of your marketing or advertising strategy.
Split testing helps you get to the root of what is and is not working your ads or other marketing collateral.
However, split testing can be a bit cumbersome. You have to isolate each of the elements you want to test, so if you want to optimize an ad for maximum success, you may have to test and change numerous elements.
For example, you will need to test whether an image is better or a video. If an image is better, you’ll need to test different types – color or black and white, one with a family or without, and so on – and different sizes. You’ll have to test different text to accompany the photo, and so on and so on.
Split testing is not an easy process, but it is important for helping you determine the best elements for reaching and influencing your audience.
Segment the Audience
Not all ad formats work for all audience members. Certain users may respond better to ads that have video, and others may respond better to pop ups.
Segmenting your audience can help you refine your focus. You can run ads for one part of your audience and run different ads for another part.
You’ll have to do a great deal of research to determine all the elements that work for the different segments of your audience. For example, you’ll have to learn not only what elements of the ad are most influential for specific parts of your audience, but you’ll also have to determine what websites to target and so on.
Segmenting your audience can help you optimize your ads for maximum impact, which will help you get a bigger return on your investment. Therefore, the work will be worthwhile.
Create Options for Different Devices
Say you perform all your research and testing and find out that video ads perform very well with your audience.
Well, the video you use doesn’t load very quickly on mobile devices, nor does it show up well.
This is just one example of how an ad format can perform differently based on the different devices that people may be using to access content. You need to develop multiple options for your ads based on the different possibilities.
Of course, this means that you’re going to have to research and test for each of the devices. Throw in segmentation and other variables, and you’re looking at a lot of work. But again, if you want to optimize for maximize results, you’re going to need to do it.
Incorporate User-Intent Data
The best way to optimize your ads without having to perform all this work is to incorporate user-intent data.
User-intent data looks at what audience members are really interested in when they’re browsing – not just what terms they are entering into search or what websites they are visiting. Chances are that they could be entering ineffective search terms or that they could be visiting websites that offer nothing of value.
Instead, user-intent algorithms look at a more expansive set of data to make inferences about what the person is trying to find.
When you use this data, your ads are automatically optimized because they are presenting the right content for that user.
It’s not practical to try to determine user-intent data manually as there is just too much information to consider and you can’t perform analysis as quickly as you need to. Instead, you need to use a solution like In-Feed from CodeFuel.
In-feed uses an advanced algorithm that determines what users need based on what site they are on, what device and browser they are using, what time and day it is, and many more factors. It then translates that data quickly to create actionable insights, automatically placing an ad that is right for an individual user.
In-Feed delivers native ads that are more engaging and more likely to get around destructive ad-blocking software.
Skip all the research that drains your time and resources and use a solution that can do all the work for you and get the right ads in front of the right people.
Creating an ad strategy that gets results is a constant challenge. At times, you may feel like you need a crystal ball to know exactly what your users want and when they want it.
But you don’t need a crystal ball. You just need the right technology on your side.
As technology advances, you have more and more options to learn about your audience and to make the right decisions about what ads they need to see. Though the technology is not magical, it can feel like you do have a crystal ball.
Dynamic creative optimization (DCO) is technology that selects the right ads based on tests of extensive data. The programming quickly interprets all the data available to it about a user to determine the right ad, including what the ad says and how it says it.
Using DCO can help you save money and get results faster. Here’s how:
Cut A/B Testing
DCO performs multivariate testing to determine what ads to show individual users.
It collects the information, performs the testing, and makes the recommendation faster than Superman can leap tall buildings.
What DCO is doing when it conducts these tests is the same thing you would be doing if you were performing A/B testing. However, your own A/B testing would have to assess hundreds of variables and would take months or even years to complete (not to mention the many thousands of dollars) to get the same results that DCO technology can get before you can pop a mint.
Using programming that includes DCO technology will help you save enormous resources, both in terms of time and money. You’ll get the actionable insights you need without having to make the tremendous investment, and you’ll free up your resources to focus on developing other parts of your marketing strategy or your business.
Gain Smarter Insights
When you try to determine your own ad placement, there is a lot of room for error based on human limitations.
You may have performed the testing, conducted the analysis, and come up with a great strategy that you feel is bound to succeed. But you may have forgotten some tiny detail that will end up having a big impact. Or you may implement the right choice just as some other detail changes, thereby requiring another strategy.
There are too many things that you can overlook and the data is changing so fast that you just can’t keep up with it all. By using the right technology, you can get smarter insights that take into account all the available data and that make the right recommendations in split-second time.
No matter how much we might believe in our human superiority, none of us are as smart as certain machine technology. Using the right program will always net you better results in less time.
Choosing the Right Program
There are a few programs on the market that include DCO and predictive technology to help you optimize ad placement, but CodeFuel’s own In-feed is one of the best.
In-feed has a user-intent-based algorithm that analyzes what users are doing when they are online, from the browsers they are using to access the Internet to the ads and content they click on and how long they spend on them. Through this analysis, In-feed is able to have a better understanding of what these users are really looking for when they are online. It can then turn that understanding into actionable insights for ad placement.
In-feed uses DCO technology to determine the right types of ads to show users, as well. The program focuses exclusively on native ads since they have a better chance of reaching users. However, there are many different types of native ads, from paid reviews to sponsored posts. The DCO technology helps the program determine which of these native ads types will perform best with the particular user.
Effective advertising seems to be a magical blend of the right ad (content, format, images, and more) in the right location at the right time in front of the right person. Even the smallest detail can throw off the combination and determining the right ad for success. With In-feed, you can get the right intelligence to ensure the right choice is always being made on your behalf.
You get results much faster with In-feed, which means that you’ll start seeing your sales, leads and traffic all increase. You’ll get more brand exposure, and your bottom line will start looking a lot healthier.
Think of In-feed like putting your advertising strategy on steroids – you’re doing the same work and spending the same money, but you’re suddenly seeing immense gains.
People are using technology to improve their own online experience, such as by blocking ads or getting more from individual pages. It’s time you use technology to improve the performance you get from your online marketing.
Programmatic creative is a growing technology that brands are using to scale their advertising and other creative processes. It helps them to automate processes and to perform them faster.
This technology falls under the umbrella of dynamic creative optimization (DCO), which analyzes data and performs multivariate testing to determine the best creative collateral to serve to a user.
There are many ways that you can use programmatic creative to help grow your brand. Here are a few of the most common strategies:
Split testing, or A/B testing, is one of the best ways for brands to gain insights into how effective their marketing and advertising strategies truly are.
With split testing, brands create two versions of an ad or piece of marketing copy, and they change only one element. For example, one ad may include a call to action that says, “Click here to lose weight now,” and another may have a call to action that says, “Click here to lose fat now.” Both ads are run, and the metrics are analyzed to determine which ad performed better.
Other tests may focus on the timing, the location, or even the format of the ad.
Through an extensive series of tests, brands are able to determine the most effective elements of their advertising so that every word, every image, and every decision for the ad is working to increase clicks and sales.
Programmatic creative technology allows brands to generate multiple ads very quickly for the purposes of testing. They are able to perform the tests faster and to spend fewer resources creating the ads, which helps them get to the goal faster: Insights that will improve their bottom line.
In some cases, this technology also helps brands to automate their testing.
What’s possible is dependent on the program used. Different programs have different goals, so the focus of one program might not be conducive to automating split testing.
However, if you find a program that does allow you to automate split testing, you can basically stand back and watch the insights roll in without having to conduct the research yourself, without having to make the informed decisions about what variables to change, and without having to put in the time to implement and monitor the test.
Anytime you can automate or scale a process for your brand, you can save money and make more out of the resources you have. Your team can get actionable information faster, which means that you can create effective campaigns faster and meet your sales and lead goals.
Improve Ad Placement
One of the most common – and most important – uses for programmatic creative technology is to improve ad placement.
This technology helps brands to tailor their ads to ensure they are meeting the right audiences.
Split testing can only be so effective if it is not considering the audience. For example, one verb change may generate more clicks or leads, but that information can only provide a “majority rule.” If you want to deliver one ad that will get the most clicks on average, this is a fine strategy.
However, if you want to get the most clicks possible for each ad you show, you are going to have to consider the user when deciding what ad to show. That’s what programmatic creative technology does. It decides which user might want to see the ad and adjusts accordingly, improving the odds that each ad displayed will yield results.
In-feed from CodeFuel is a top advertising program using this and other advanced technology to get results. In-feed has an advanced algorithm that analyzes the user intent of each individual based on a variety of data, such as what sites are being visited, how much time is being spent on certain content, what ads are being clicked on, and more.
The goal of In-feed and programs like it is to determine what the user really wants or needs while searching or browsing in that moment. Maybe the person is looking to buy, or maybe they just want information. Maybe they don’t even know what they want for certain. Showing them the right ad helps to meet them where they are.
In-feed deliver native ads automatically based on data about the user, including what browser they are currently using, whether they are on a desktop or mobile device, what time of day it is, and so on.
By automating your ads through expert analysis performed on reams of data, you are able to get more click, sales, leads, and exposure. Every ad does more for you, which means you get more out of every dollar and every hour spent.
If you are not already using programmatic creative technology or a program like In-feed, it is time you did. You are essentially turning your back on advanced intelligence and almost guaranteed results without it.
Talk of premium ad units usually centers around investment in them, and it usually refers to placement on high-quality websites.
But this isn’t the whole story. In fact, it’s not even always part of the story.
What makes an ad unit “premium” has much more to do with how it lands with users and how it handles the balance between content and context. Here are just some of the elements that can make an ad premium in the sense that it gets you the results you want:
The best ads have to provide people exactly what they want. The only way to do that is to target the ads so that they reach the right people.
There are many ways to target ads, depending on the network. On Facebook, for example, you can choose from one of the thousands of options that the social media site provides.
For website ads, you can use a user-intent based program that evaluates user data to determine the type of content they want to see.
User-intent based ads are more effective because they consider the nuance behind a user’s behavior, trying to get at what the person really wants or needs. The program doesn’t just look for keywords and match the ads – it translates the information to develop a more complex understanding of the user.
Your ads will never land with users if they are boring or uninspiring. You don’t want people to look at your ads and keep scrolling, nor do you want them to overlook your ads entirely.
Your ads must be engaging if they are to attract the attention of your target audience and convince users to read the content, absorb it, and feel moved to act.
Ads with images and videos help to attract attention and engage users. Ads that make emotional appeals or that challenge the users also engage audiences.
Whatever you do, you want to move the people who view your ads. Make them laugh. Make them cry. Inspire them. Energize them. Just make them feel something. A user who feels something is an engaged user, and an engaged user is one who is more receptive to your message and more likely to be convinced to buy your product.
Best Placement on Page
The location of an ad on a page has a big impact on how successful that ad will be.
For example, if you bury an ad too far down the page, very few people are likely to see it. If you put a small text ad in the middle of a bunch of graphics or content, very few people are likely to see it.
Typically, advertisers have aimed to get their ads placed at the top of the page and in a prominent position. But the quality of the placement has to do with much more than location on the page. It must also consider the content around it, the way that users interact with the page, and more.
For example, the bottom of the page may very well be a great place for an ad if that’s where some important information is found or if research shows that’s where many users tend to take action before leaving that particular site.
You will need to perform the right research to determine the best placement for your ad based on a number of factors.
Best Website Placement
Of course, getting your ads on the best websites is also important. But just like with placement on the page, placement on a site is also relative.
Just getting your ad on a high-profile site won’t necessarily be enough. For example, getting an ad on Perez Hilton won’t be worth much if you sell specialty, high-end dolls (unless you find that there is somehow a correlation between people who like celebrity gossip and those who like to collect specialty, high-end dolls).
You need to get your ads on sites that are actually relevant to your target audience. The higher the traffic, the better, but traffic isn’t the only factor to consider.
Using the right tools can help you get ads that have all these characteristics so that they consistently perform better.
In-feed from CodeFuel relies on a user-intent algorithm to determine what ads should be shown to what users. The algorithm takes into account user activity, the type of device being used, the time of day, and much more.
In-feed also focuses on native advertising, which enhances the user experience and improves user engagement. The algorithm places ads on the most relevant sites and in the most relevant location. The entire program is designed to put ads in front of the right users in the right place and at the right time.
Try out In-feed and see how it can help you start getting the results you want from your advertising. Every ad unit it creates will be a premium one!