Content Advertising

What Is Content Advertising?

Content advertising refers to creating content that will be promoted through paid distribution channels like sponsored placements, advertisements, and pay-per-click campaigns. Its primary focus is to create brand awareness by putting your content in front of an audience that will find it engaging or compelling, aka your target audience. 

Once you’ve created interesting content, you can then promote it via paid channels.

Comparing Content Advertising and Content Marketing

Similar to content marketing, any content format can be used for content advertising, from videos on YouTube to whitepapers. 

Content marketing, on the other hand, refers to one of the core elements of inbound marketing, which focuses on creating experiences that are valuable for consumers. Content marketing is also about storytelling and is not limited solely to viral videos, blogs, and social media posts. 

It focuses on brand awareness, organic growth, and giving customers what they want or providing them with benefits, with the goal of converting them into leads that generate sales.

To further define the difference between these two concepts, content advertising, unlike content marketing, doesn’t rely on factors like SEO and organic traffic. It’s an ideal recourse for niche topics or markets that don’t necessarily get subjected to organic growth or traffic.

Content Advertising vs. Native Advertising

Another term with which content advertising is often confused with is native advertising. The latter refers to paid content that seamlessly and successfully blends with organic content within a platform. By successful, it means that readers won’t often recognize the difference between organic and promoted content. It is placed in such a way that it won’t disrupt a viewer’s experience. 

However, native advertising relies heavily on readers not being able to clearly distinguish which content is promoted and which ones are organic. 

Content advertising differs from native advertising in that it should be indistinguishable from organic content. It upholds the quality of the content and not the way it’s been promoted.

The Benefits of Content Advertising 

Content advertising is essentially paid advertising, but why would you pay for it in the first place? 

As a content creator, you want people, especially your target audience, to find your content and engage with it. While you can turn to social media and other platforms for content distribution, you won’t always get the end results that you want. You would also be facing a lot of competition in these avenues. 

With content advertising, you’ll be able to reach your intended audience, those with the potential to be converted into leads. 

If you have existing content, you can alter this to fit your marketing strategy and any planned campaigns. You don’t necessarily have to come up with new content solely for the purpose of content advertising

Types of Content Advertising

Here are a few examples of content advertising that are commonly encountered when browsing the web:

  • Search engine

A simple search on Google can direct readers to paid ads that appear at the top of search results. These ads often offer value-adding content and often reward visitors with benefits such as free guides or tools.

  • Social media

Social media is still a great avenue for targeted advertising. At times, a relevant or targeted ad may appear on your feed, depending on your preferences, browsing history, and other factors.

  • Partnerships with publishers

One of the most common types of content used in content advertising is publisher partnership. Online publishers not only offer content advertising but also co-created content and content discovery. 

  • Email

Newsletters are a popular avenue for content advertising. Publishers often offer paid placements in their newsletters, particularly in newsletters with a focused audience.

You can often find advertised content in newsletters with links that redirect readers to a specific website. You may even find the content as being highlighted, using phrases like “Content from ____”. 

Content advertising is different from content marketing and native advertising, although each of these elements complements each other in the grander scheme of things. Content advertising is especially useful when you want to market your valuable content. It is also an indispensable tool that helps you focus on your target market and expand your reach. 

Content advertising utilizes targeted audience segmentation. It’s also scalable, easier to control, and more often than not, gives you the results you want faster. 

About the Author
With over 15 years in content marketing, Werner founded Influencer Marketing Hub in 2016. He successfully grew the platform to attract 5 million monthly visitors, making it a key site for brand marketers globally. His efforts led to the company's acquisition in 2020. Additionally, Werner's expertise has been recognized by major marketing and tech publications, including Forbes, TechCrunch, BBC and Wired.