Giving ads the same importance as content
Aller Media is a leading Scandinavian publisher that owns a variety of media outlets including KK.no, a landmark fashion and lifestyle magazine. In late 2015, KK.no partnered with Google Ad Manager to build fully responsive, component-based native ads. The result was a beautiful and seamless user experience on both mobile and desktop, increased ad viewability and greater impact for advertisers.
Historically, fashion magazine readers have turned to ads for information in the same way they’ve looked to editorial content for the latest trends. This relationship between ads and content hasn’t changed as magazines have transitioned to digital.
For KK.no, ads have always been, and will remain, an important part of its content. Accordingly, the team wanted ads with “big, high-impact formats, lots of space to present our message, and also nice pictures,” explains Kirsti Engedal Alfheim, head of ad operations at KK.no. This vision prompted the company to turn to native advertising to recreate the experience of reading a glossy, print magazine for each of its digital properties.
Exploring beautiful ads to respond on all screens
With more of its users on mobile devices, KK.no invested in a responsive website to deliver contextually relevant experiences. But its ads, particularly the custom native formats, didn’t respond to the user's context in the same way as its content, so KK.no began to explore Google Ad Manager’s native advertising solution.
With that, KK.no could easily scale fully responsive native ads to every device and user context. Advertisers simply provided KK.no with a set of components — image, headline, CTA, etc. — and Google Ad Manager automatically compiled ads to fit the look and feel of KK.no across all of its digital properties. “This format was new to us, and we were happy to test it together with Google Ad Manager,” Kirsti shares.
More than 85% growth in ad viewability on mobile
KK.no experienced a “very positive trend” soon after adopting Google Ad Manager, Kirsti explains. Ad viewability increased by 67% on all devices, with an 88% increase on mobile. With the full-screen format, ad viewability reached 93%. “That is amazing,” she adds.
Most importantly, the increase in ad viewability didn’t detract from user experiences of KK.no on both mobile and desktop. The component-based nature of native ads ensured they fit into the company’s content in a way that wasn’t disruptive to readers. Kirsti explains, “They actually love it. It’s a part of how they consume the content on the site.”
With our new native format on mobile, we have managed to attract more brand advertisers.
, Head of Ad Operations, Aller Media
Advertisers also found real value in these new formats. “It’s better for everybody,” adds Chris Talleraas Steen, KK.no’s sales director.
Bringing programmatic technology to native advertising
KK.no views programmatic as integral to the future of its advertising solutions. While 30% of its brand advertisers bought KK.no programmatically in 2015, KK.no anticipates this number will grow by at least 50% in 2016. Moving forward, KK.no plans to programmatically sell native ads, viewing this as an effective approach for the performance of both its advertisers and KK.no properties.
As a fashion magazine that deeply cares about quality content and engaging advertising, KK.no is excited to continue innovating on its approach to native advertising and bring in new creatives that are even more interactive. “We are anxious to develop all this further with Google Ad Manager,” Kirsti says.