Native Advertising 101: Understanding the native continuum

A concise explanation of the continuum between classic banners and native ads. The apparent underpricing of native ads surely can’t last for long.


“Native advertising” is a term you’ve probably heard a lot lately. It’s come to embody a set of advertising approaches that look to integrate advertising more fully into the digital content experience. Sponsored content on Buzzfeed, “brand stories” on Facebook (s FB), promoted trends on Twitter — all of these are commonly cited examples of advertising gone native.

But publishers and brands looking to incorporate native ads into their portfolio often have a poor understanding of the “native continuum” — the gradient that exists between a classic banner ad and a fully native one. While all forms of native advertising What are the key differences? What types of ads exist along the continuum? And, most importantly, what are the benefits and drawbacks of each approach? Here’s a guide.

native ad continuum

The tourist ad

Far from being a true “native,” the “tourist” subtype is just a step up from a standard banner ad…

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