5 Tips for New Project Managers on Native Advertising Campaigns

If you want to excel and be an excellent Project Manager here are some pro tips to help you execute a successful native campaign.
native advertising campaigns

eviekevishBy Evie Kevish
Project Manager at Shaw Media Marketing
Chicago, USA
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If you are a Project Manager then you have to think like one.

This means you are responsible for producing fresh content on a regular basis and keeping a content marketing mindset is key, meaning you are always on the lookout for new content possibilities.

You need to be informed and educated as to what is going on locally, nationally and globally. There could be a great opportunity to feature an article that is timely with an issue that is happening right now.

If you want to excel and be an excellent Project Manager here are some pro tips to help you execute a successful native campaign.

To keep producing fresh content on a regular basis, the Project Manager needs to keep track of the ideas they are using and measure their success. Test it and measure it.

1: “How do I produce fresh content on a regular basis?”

A successful Project Manager needs to spend time brainstorming and coming up with topic ideas that answer popular questions and that provide value to their readers.

They also need to look at what campaign topics have performed well in the past. Look at what topics had the highest engagements, while also looking at which ones did poorly.

When looking at reporting you want to look at engagement numbers for your native campaign versus editorial content and choose topics similar to the topics that had double or more average editorial engagement.

RELATED: Three Macro Trends for Your Native Content to Tap Into In 2019

Publishers can also repurpose the client’s best content from a new angle which gives new opportunities to be found online. The client will gain your readers trust by actually showing they are the expert and showing that they are the trusted advertiser within that specific industry.

To keep producing fresh content on a regular basis, the Project Manager needs to keep track of the ideas they are using and measure their success. Test it and measure it.

Project Managers can also learn from the masters. Look at other content creators – what are they doing? Explore their processes. Look at different media outlets while being honest about what you are talking about. Keep your readers’ interests in mind. They will remember your story and brand when you create content that is relevant.

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I will see what they are about and when I talk to them ask them what are their goals and objectives for their campaign.

2: “What should I bring up in the kick off call with the client?”

If you are a new Project Manager you might think, “What will I bring up on the call with my new client?”

When I receive a new contract, I make sure to do research on my client before calling them. I will look at their website, blog, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube. I will see what they are about and when I talk to them ask them what are their goals and objectives for their campaign.

RELATED: How to Best Work with Agencies and Brands on Native Advertising Campaigns

From there I will create a list of topics for their yearly campaign and I will have this approved by the client prior to having the content written.

The clients love this because we will work on the ideas together then I do not have to guess or wait for them each month to come up with an idea for their next month’s content. This has been a very turnkey process for my clients and they love it.

When I call the client I will explain the process again and then try to guide them into approving topics that I know will perform well.

Showing reporting and talking about examples like this to potential new clients or even current ones can really pay off.

3: “The client does not understand what native advertising truly is”

This is something I have come across several times.

The client is asking why they are paying for something and they are not seeing immediate results.

The solution to that would be a simple meeting with them again to educate them that Native is not traditional advertising. These are not CTA ads. These are educational and informative articles, which feature you (the client) as the expert. This builds trust from readers. They have seen your brand and content, they have engaged with it and if something comes up for them or a family member or friend they will more than likely be inclined to purchase something from you since they have engaged with your content.

RELATED: “The Best Way to Sell Native Advertising Is to Show Examples”

For example, I had a client that is a local dentist and the dentist told me that they had acquired a new patient from one of their Native Advertising articles.

The content focused on how your overall health is linked with your dental health and the patient said she had seen several articles on the subject. Prior to reading the articles, she was so afraid to go to the dentist but after reading several of this client’s articles she realized that dental health is just as important as her overall health.

She told the dentist that the articles are what educated her and brought her in, and she has been a patient there for over three years now. The content featured the dentist as the expert and gave the patient comfort and confidence to make an appointment to get her dental issues taken care of.

Showing reporting and talking about examples like this to potential new clients or even current ones can really pay off.

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Less stress and more productivity all the way around makes a happy Project Manager and team!

4: “Do I really need a content calendar?”

Without a doubt, this is something you need to have in place from day one.

You need to prioritize your clients, the articles and what content is going out in each market. Some of our sites have more native clients than others, but I try to spread out the content between the markets so they are not oversaturated daily.

In addition to that, you need to make sure the same topics are not being repeated with different clients in the same market. You can produce similar content or even the same topic but you need to make sure those articles are run different times throughout the month.

RELATED: How to Take Your Native Ad Strategy Full-Funnel with 3 Specific Content Types

You also need to work with your team to ensure each fulfilment item is being done each week. I will have content posted online and social media the first week of the month, and the second week, I will have the print version go out and week three the e-blast will go out and so on.

This way the client is having native content posted each week of the month but in various ways. The content calendar helps you and your team stay organized and ahead of the next month. When you are organized and know what you are doing each month it makes things a lot easier for you, your team and your clients.

Less stress and more productivity all the way around makes a happy Project Manager and team!

Focus your biggest efforts into the channels that will generate the most ROI for your clients.

5: “What steps do you recommend for a Project Manager to be successful?”

Successful Project Managers look at their campaigns as a whole.

You do need to pay attention to the small details, but more importantly, focus on any issues you might find within the campaign and prioritize your actions.

Don’t be afraid to be transparent and speak up to your team, clients or Management. You need to communicate with your clients on a regular basis and you need to keep your team abreast to any changes. Schedule quarterly check-ins with your clients. Call them, have a video call with them or meet them with their Account Executive to ensure you are all on the same page.

RELATED: How Not to Waste Money on Native Advertising

Make sure you stick to your deadlines! This is so crucial. If you let things sit and pass nothing will get posted and your entire calendar will be in shambles. This will, in turn, cause a bottleneck within the workflow and mess everything up. Stay on schedule!

Finally, focus your biggest efforts into the channels that will generate the most ROI for your clients.

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