Advertorials are a complex format for advertisers to master. Rather than an attention-grabbing digital banner ad or sleek print ad, an advertorial is typically a longer, editorial-style ad. This format blends in with the content of the publication and allows advertisers to explain their product and services in more detail than other forms, but typically in a more educational, content-rich way.
A great advertorial should deliver relevant material to the publication and speak to a problem, question, or concern that the given audience might have or experience. By using this format, you can establish your brand as a thought leader within your industry and in the eyes of your customers and prospects. For example, a smartphone company would establish further credibility by publishing in a consumer electronics magazine to describe the benefits of their smartphone’s newest camera technology.
Here are the top five things to keep in mind when creating your next advertorial:
1. DEFINE YOUR GOALS FIRST
Is your message clear? Is your message getting to the reader as it is intended? Do you have your end goals in mind?
2. HAVE A CLEAR AND CONCISE CALL TO ACTION
Your call to action, your message, and your end goals need to be aligned. You must be clear about what you want the reader to do next, and your reader should have the capability to take that next step. This might mean contacting your company directly or providing a link to a landing page where they sign up for a free webinar, demo or consultation.
3. BE SURE YOU UNDERSTAND YOUR AUDIENCE AND THE CONTEXT OF THE PUBLICATION YOU'RE PUBLISHING IN
Have you studied the publication that your ads are running in? Your format and style should very closely match that of the publication so it blends in. The tone of your article should be similar to the writing style of the publication. Writing in the first person can establish you as a thought leader while the third person will set an objective and authoritative tone. Be sure to identify the author if you write in the first person.
Understand not just your audience, but the context they will be viewing it in. Pay attention to the editorial schedule of the publication and weave the relevant topics into your ad.
4. DON'T WASTE ANYONE'S TIME WITH POORLY WRITTEN OR MUNDANE CONTENT
Advertorials are longer than a typical ad, and every word needs to be relevant and germane to your message to keep the reader engaged. The content of your advertorial needs to be captivating to your reader. It needs to be unique and not something a simple Google search could offer them. Your advertorial needs be valuable to the reader in order to convert them to a prospect.
If you don’t have someone in-house who can write a strong advertorial, then think about outsourcing this job so you don’t waste any of your advertising dollars.
5. ADDRESS THE NEED AND PAIN POINTS OF YOUR TARGET AUDIENCE
When coming up with a topic to write about, start by creating a list of questions that your prospects ask in relation to the publication you are advertising in.
For instance, an application development company running an advertorial with Inside Radio will want to think about the most common objections and questions that Marketing Directors, GMs, and Digital Sales Managers ask during the sales process. It’s likely not about the technology behind the apps, but instead how the apps will help them generate more listeners and/or revenue for their radio station.
Speak to these pain points and questions, and your advertorial will have much more success.
These best practices are the essence of any great advertorial and keeping them in mind while writing will ensure that you’re engaging your readers with your content and representing your brand properly.