Vocus Releases “The Comprehensive Guide to Native Advertising” eBook

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Short eBook is the “how-to” guide for marketers to navigate the complex and evolving world of sponsored content

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This guide is an exhaustive resource to educate and train marketers to effectively utilize native advertising. - Vocus Chief Marketing Officer You Mon Tsang

Vocus, Inc.(NASDAQ: VOCS), a leading provider of cloud-based marketing and public relations software, today released the “The Comprehensive Guide to Native Advertising.” Within the eBook, marketers will learn the types of native advertising and when to use them, methods to build and test a native advertising program, how to integrate sponsored content into branding and lead conversion cycles, and suggestions on disclosing sponsored content to meet the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) guidance.

Native advertising, which is the purchasing of sponsored content on social networks and online websites, dominated digital marketing conversations in the last year. In a recent report, market research company BIA/Kelsey estimated that U.S. native ad spending on social sites likely reached $2.36 billion in 2013 or 38.9 percent of total U.S. paid social ad expenditures. In an age where content marketing and consumption dominates, native advertising is a valuable tool for brands to amplify their message in a cluttered marketing space. According to Fast Company, ad engagement rates for native ads are more than three times higher than other ads.

“Native advertising allows marketers to leverage the reach and brand equity of popular publications, social networks and search engines to increase the readership and credibility of their owned media,” said Vocus Chief Marketing Officer You Mon Tsang. “Although sponsored content gained popularity in 2013, many marketers are struggling to stay on top of the trend and develop effective strategies. This guide is an exhaustive resource to educate and train marketers to effectively utilize native advertising.”

Some key points from the guide include:

What is Native Advertising?

The Interactive Advertising Bureau defines six types of native ad units, including social media in-feed units (such as Facebook's ads with a social context), paid search, recommendation widgets (often seen as "From Around the Web"), promoted listings, standard ads with native elements (banner or box with text or placed at beginning of post), and custom campaigns created with the client.

How Does Native Advertising Fit Into the Marketing Mix?

Native advertising helps brands effectively reach different parts of the marketing funnel. Creating articles that run in relevant publications can help make potential consumers aware of products, services and offerings. Using hyper-targeting features within social networks like Twitter or Facebook to reach the right audience can help lead to conversions and lower the cost of leads.

The Ecosystem of Native Advertising Providers

The native ad ecosystem includes content creators such as companies, brands and agencies, who create the content either alone or in conjunction with the publishers, as well as the search and social networks and vendors offering advertising space.

Content is Still King

Native advertising requires quality content. Studies show that if sponsored content delivers context, people gladly embrace it as something worthwhile and useful. Furthermore, publications hold sponsored content to strict editorial standards. Great native advertising propels a brand’s message and serves value to its audience simultaneously.

Disclosure and Challenges

There is no standard way for publications to disclose or present native advertising, and as paid content gets shared by readers, the lines between paid and organic get blurred. These are topics the FTC is investigating in order to protect consumers.

To learn more, “The Comprehensive Guide to Native Advertising” is available for free download here.


About Vocus
Vocus (NASDAQ: VOCS) provides leading cloud-based marketing and public relations software enabling companies to acquire and retain customers. The company offers products and services to help clients attract and engage prospects, capture and keep customers, and measure and improve marketing effectiveness. More than 17,000 annual subscription customers across a wide variety of industries use Vocus software. The company is headquartered in Beltsville, MD with offices in North America, Europe and Asia. For more information, visit http://www.vocus.com or call (800) 345-5572.

Forward-Looking Statement
This release contains “forward-looking” statements that are made pursuant to the Safe Harbor provision of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements are predictive in nature, that depend upon or refer to future events or conditions or that include words such as “may,” “will,” “expects,” “projects,” “anticipates,” “estimates,” “believes,” “intends,” “plans,” “should,” “seeks,” and similar expressions. This press release contains forward-looking statements relating to, among other things, Vocus’ expectations and assumptions concerning future financial performance. Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties that may cause actual future results to differ materially from those projected or contemplated in the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements may be significantly impacted by certain risks and uncertainties described in Vocus’ filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The risks and uncertainties referred to above include, but are not limited to, risks associated with possible fluctuations in our operating results and rate of growth, our history of operating losses, risks associated with acquisitions, including our ability to successfully integrate acquired businesses, risks associated with our foreign operations, interruptions or delays in our service or our web hosting, our business model, breach of our security measures, the emerging market in which we operate, our relatively limited operating history, our ability to hire, retain, and motivate our employees and manage our growth, competition, our ability to continue to release and gain customer acceptance of new and improved versions of our service, successful customer deployment and utilization of our services, fluctuations in the number of shares outstanding, foreign currency exchange rates and interest rate.

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