Category Archives: Content Marketing

Adblade Ad Platform Announces Over 400% Growth in Native Mobile Reach in 2014

Adblade now reaches over 400 million users with Native Advertising mobile inventory!

January 26, 2015 — Adiant, owner of Adblade the largest content-style native ad platform on the web and IndustryBrains, today announced that its mobile reach has grown from just under 80 million monthly uniques to over 400 Million global monthly uniques in the last 12 months as reported by Quantcast.

“This phenomenal growth has affirmed the high quality of our mobile products for both publishers and advertisers,” said CEO Ash Nashed. “We are positioning ourselves to meet this growing demand from both sides of our business, and more importantly by recognizing that this is a consumer trend that will only continue to increase.” In an effort to address the ever-changing advertising landscape, Adblade has recognized that there is a need for greater mobile inventory in the marketplace. The advertising industry is moving more and more towards mobile each year. The importance mobile advertising will play in the future can already be seen with current trends. According to a report published by, the total U.S. media ad spend for mobile will increase from 9.8% in 2014 to a projected 18.7% in 2016. That is nearly doubling in just two years.

In addition to the massive mobile inventory available, Adblade also provides multiple mobile targeting options for advertisers. Advertisements can be targeted by device or by operating system for even more accuracy in reaching exactly the audience that the advertiser intends.

Adblade’s Newsbullet® ad format is extremely efficient and responsive in seamlessly adapting to the mobile environment. The Newsbullet® mobile ads campaigns have seen great success as a tool for branding, lead generation and driving app downloads. The mobile opportunities Adblade has made available have garnered positive feedback from both publishers and advertisers alike.



Press Release: Native Ad Survey: Ads vs. Editorial, Can Consumers Tell the Difference?


NEW YORK, NY–(Marketwired – December 18, 2014) – Adiant, owner of Adblade the largest content style native ad exchange on the web and IndustryBrains, released findings from several native advertising online surveys that they conducted. As a follow-up to their recent participation in the IAB’s Native Disclosure Workshop held in New York City on December 4th, Adiant shared the results from surveys asking consumers to identify various advertising and content widgets as advertisements or editorially recommended content. Over two hundred and twenty highly educated, web savvy consumers reviewed the images and were given the same question and answer choices throughout the survey. The only differentiator for each of the questions was the content recommendation widget shown. All consumers were instructed to answer if the images were one of the following: Advertisements, Articles that Paid to be promoted by the Website, Articles Recommended by the Website’s Editors, or that they didn’t know.

When the widgets had no disclosures above the units, or if the large text above the units was labeled with wording like “From Around the Web,” “Recommended for You” or “You May Like,” 30%-40% of consumers either didn’t know what the unit was or mistakenly thought the ads in the units were recommended by the website’s editors, leading them to believe it was editorial content.

On the other hand when the widget shown had the disclosure above the unit in large font and was labeled as “Offers and Articles,” the number of consumers that thought it was editorial content significantly decreased to about 10% to 15%.

Disclosures remain an important issue to companies in our industry and even though consumers are becoming increasingly savvy, it is still up to us to make sure consumers know what type of information they are consuming,” said Ash Nashed, Adiant’s CEO.

While it is encouraging that the majority of consumers correctly identified paid units as being paid promotion or as outright advertising, there is evidence that labeling the advertising widgets with language that clearly indicates that it is advertising further reduces any misconception that consumers may have about the units. You may view the full survey results here.

About Adiant

Adiant ( is a digital media technology company whose mission it is to deliver the most innovative advertising solutions to quality publishers and advertisers. Adiant’s brands, Adblade and IndustryBrains, have been engineered from the ground up to offer both immediate and long-term sustained value with a high level of customer service. Adblade is largest content style native ad exchange on the web and reaches more than 550 Million monthly uniques in the United States. Founded in 2008, the company is headquartered in Somerville, NJ and has offices in New York City and Buffalo, NY.

Native Ads vs. Editorial Content Survey Results

Native Advertising image

We were excited to be a part of the recent IAB round table discussion on Native Advertising Disclosures at the beginning of this month and while preparing for the panel we conducted several consumer surveys.

The surveys asked consumers to identify various advertising and content widgets as advertisements or editorially recommended content. Over two hundred and twenty highly educated, web savvy consumers reviewed the images and were given the same question and answer choices throughout the survey.  The only differentiator for each of the questions was the content recommendation widget shown. All consumers were instructed to answer if the images were one of the following: Advertisements, Articles that Paid to be promoted by the Website, Articles Recommended by the Website’s Editors, or that they didn’t know.

The results were extremely interesting and confirmed that clear labeling of widgets is important to help consumers identify paid ads from editorially recommended content. While it’s encouraging that the majority of consumers correctly identified paid units as being paid promotion or as outright advertising, there is evidence that labeling the advertising widgets with language that clearly indicates that it is advertising further reduces any misconception that consumers may have about the units.

Click here for final survey results 

One Year After the FTC “Blurred Lines” Event. What’s Changed?


If you are in NYC tomorrow, December 4th or have time to join remotely check out the IAB’s Native Disclosure Workshop that is revisiting the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) panel held last year at this time.

The 2013 “Blurred Lines” Workshop in Washington DC addressed the very real issue that has been affecting our industry, disclosure and transparency in labeling ad units. On the one year anniversary the IAB has re-grouped Laura Sullivan, Senior Staff Attorney, Division of Advertising Practices of the FTC plus IAB members and others who met in DC for a discussion on native disclosure. They will be specifically addressing: What has changed in the past year, what have we learned, and what might transpire in 2015?

Our own SVP, Jon Carmen, will be on the panel speaking to the policy that Adblade has practiced since the beginning, we label our ad units clearly as advertisements.

comScore Releases October 2014 Top 20 Ad Networks Rankings


November 21, 2014–comScore released their monthly ranking of U.S. online activity at the top digital media properties for October 2014 based on data from the comScore Media Metrix and the Media Metrix Multi-Platform services. Adblade is listed among the Top 20 Ad Networks Rankings and is the 18th largest Ad Network. To see the rest of the release click here.

Adblade is rated the #1 Ad Network in the US and #3 in the World by Quantcast


November 10, 2014–Quantcast, a leading technology and real-time advertising company, today released a list of the top 20 global ad networks and platforms with public Quantcast Measure profiles. At the top of the list was Rubicon Project, with a reach of 544 million people globally in October. The list, which can be found at, is the first in a quarterly series. It includes representation across the advertising ecosystem, from ad exchanges, such as OpenX, to platforms focused on specialized ad units, such as GumGum.

“The Top Global Ad Networks and Platforms List provides insight into the makeup of the global online advertising ecosystem and the power that Quantcast Measure brings to ad networks and platforms for validation and demonstration of their audience composition and reach,” said Jag Duggal, senior vice president of Product Management for Quantcast. “At the top of the list are supply-side platforms and ad-exchange platforms that connect buyers and sellers globally.”

“Premium publishers and Web applications are increasingly adopting advertising automation technology to help them reach audiences globally,” commented Gregory R. Raifman, president, Rubicon Project. “Ranking No. 1 on the Quantcast list is proof that Rubicon Project is the top choice for those who seek unprecedented global reach and scale.”

Adblade, a content advertising platform, also lands in the top five, demonstrating the wide adoption of content-based advertising. Ash Nashed, founder and CEO of Adblade, commented: “Quantcast has been a very valuable tool for us over the years and has helped us demonstrate our rapid audience growth and quality to both advertisers and publishers across the U.S. and worldwide.”

Online video is represented by SpotXchange and AnyClip, both video advertising platforms. Ad networks continue to play an important role: J Carter Marketing, engage:BDR and IDG TechNetwork are just a few examples that appear in the top 20.

The Top Global Ad Networks and Platforms List demonstrates how the infrastructure for digital advertising has expanded globally. Nine of the 20 entities reached the majority of their audiences outside of the U.S. Using Quantcast Measure, ad networks and platforms can track their global reach, as well as gain insight into their audience composition.

The Top Global Ad Networks and Platforms List draws from ad networks and platforms that are directly measured by Quantcast Measure and have chosen to share their traffic profile publicly. Entities are ranked by their global 30-day people number, which is a modeled number that represents the unduplicated audience reach across an entity’s Web and mobile Web properties. The Top Global Ad Networks and Platforms List only includes entities that work with third-party publishers to monetize their inventory with advertising. Publishers that sell advertising, but exclusively against their owned and operated properties, are not included.

About Quantcast
Quantcast is a technology company specialized in real-time advertising and audience measurement. As the pioneer of direct audience measurement in 2006, Quantcast has the most in-depth understanding of digital audiences across Web and mobile, allowing marketers and publishers to make the smartest choices as they buy and sell the most effective targeted advertising on the market. More than 1,000 brands rely on Quantcast for real-time advertising. As the leader in Big Data for the digital advertising industry, Quantcast directly measures more than 100 million Web destinations, incorporates over 1 trillion new data records every month and continuously processes as much as 30 petabytes of data every day. Quantcast is headquartered in San Francisco and is backed by Founders Fund, Polaris Venture Partners and Cisco Systems. For more information, visit

Quantcast Global Ad Networks and Platforms



How to keep native ads honest

November 3, 2014–Despite the media’s progress in defining native advertising, ambiguity surrounding whether it’s an honest or misleading is still prevalent in the headlines. It’s this confusion that has drowned out the industry’s progress in promoting transparency as a sales vehicle.

In order to understand what’s going on, let’s take a step back and reexamine the definition of native advertising. Simply put, native advertising is paid media that intentionally blends into content in which it appears.

One of the most prevalent examples of this type of advertising is Facebook’s news feed ads. The “sponsored posts” organically flow through a consumer’s news feed as the reader scrolls down through their friend’s posts, comments and photos. The way in which the ad content is structured, as a post, blends right into the way the Facebook news feed content is meant to be consumed.

facebook sponsored ad How to keep native ads honest

The most basic type of native ad unit is the image plus text which is foundational to native advertising. Other variations on this format do exist including video ad units, sponsored articles (sometimes called advertorials, which is a throwback to the magazine era) and just plain text.

A common cause for confusion surrounding native advertising is the purpose or goal of the ad. Since native ad units can come in different format, it’s perfect for selling various products, services or promoting different types of content. Sometimes it’s selling a product directly, sometimes it’s touting a brand’s message, or it’s sending the reader to other content. The flexibility of native advertising is both one of its strengths and its weaknesses.

Three of the best ways to keep native ads clear, honest and straightforward are:

Disclose, disclose, disclose

Native exchanges still somehow use vague language in their disclosures today and hide ad notification icons or at best make them barely visible. For example, the popular “You Might Like” heading over a group of native ads can cause confusion– consumers infer that the content appearing is just that, editorial content when in fact, it’s sponsored content.

The ad icons often used are not well known either. What is the point of a disclosure if it doesn’t actually notify the consumer that they are looking at is paid media? Make sure the exchange you are using clearly labels the disclosures. Ask them to see how your ad will appear on a website.

Ensure that your native ad network uses clear language

Language such as “Offers and Articles from Around the Web” prepares the consumer for the mix of ads and sponsored content that they will encounter if they click on one of the native ads. An example of vague language is Chipotle’s sponsorship of Huffington Post’s Food For Thought Blog. The brand appears around the page in some of the articles and in the opening of the blog, but doesn’t make it well-defined that it was sponsoring the content.

It was AdWeek that actually helped to make the sponsorship clear to the media and the rest of the world.

Extend proper disclosure practices to landing pages

Even when a consumer can distinguish native advertising from editorial content, then engages with the ad, there can often be confusion when they get to a landing page. Any native ad exchange network worth their salt will always review and approve advertisers’ landing pages. If yours isn’t compliant, guess what shouldn’t be advertising.

Better disclosure leads to better business results, period. Advertisers can benefit from better engagement if they extend the practice of proper disclosures to their landing pages.Screen Shot 2014 07 29 at 15.07.05 730x604 How to keep native ads honest

The best example out there now is BMW’s Medium blog partnership. Medium’s page clearly conveyed BMW as the sponsor of content, which intertwined functional design and inspired art, perfectly fitting in with the content. BMW is prominently featured as the sponsor, but the content is the hero that demands all the attention.

If we all work towards the goal of keeping consumers better informed and helping them make better decisions by distinguishing editorial content from ads, engagement will rise and more meaningful business results will be achieved. Bottom line is, we all win.

Check out the full article from our friends at TNW. 

Adiant, owner of Adblade and IndustryBrains, integrates with LiveRamp to provide Advertisers Native Ad Retargeting at Scale

October 15, 2014 – Adiant, the largest native advertising platform on the web and owner of Adblade and IndustryBrains, are thrilled to announce an integration with LiveRamp’s data onboarding service.  The integration will allow advertisers to use their own customer data for retargeting across the largest proprietary native advertising platform on the Web.  Advertisers will benefit from more targeted campaigns that produce higher click-through rates and increased conversions to more qualified customers.

Through a process called data onboarding, Adiant advertisers will now be able to define audience segments based on attributes in their customer databases – such as past purchase history and customer lifetime value – and then anonymize and deliver those segments to Adiant for retargeting.

“Adiant again raises the bar in native advertising, giving advertisers powerful audience targeting within our massive “in content” advertising platform now reaching 553 million unique users monthly,” said CEO Ash Nashed. “We’ll continue to provide cutting-edge solutions advertisers and publishers are looking for as the industry evolves, making sure we offer the best technology available and the highest quality and properly labeled native advertising platform.  Providing high quality advertisers with the ability to use their customer data to retarget Adiant’s in content placements at scale creates completely new ways for advertisers to interact with users.  It also makes our premium publishing partner’s inventory more valuable in terms of generating higher CPMs.”

“We’re excited to help Adiant customers realize even greater value by connecting Adiant to valuable customer data sources, ” said Auren Hoffman, CEO of LiveRamp. “By onboarding customer data, advertisers can benefit from proven data-driven marketing strategies, such as CRM retargeting, ad suppression, and look-alike modeling.”

Adiant, owner of Adblade and IndustryBrains has direct first party relationships with over 1,000 local and national branded digital properties, including publishers such as McClatchy Newspapers, Worldnow, Lee Enterprises, Christian Science Monitor, Washington Times, ABC News, Hearst and hundreds more.  Adiant helps agencies and advertisers successfully connect with qualified customers with properly labeled “in content” style native advertising placements in highly credible environments at the right time – when they are browsing for quality information.

About Adiant Adiant is a digital media technology company whose mission is to deliver the most innovative advertising solutions to quality publishers and advertisers. Our brands have been engineered from the ground up to offer both immediate and long-term sustained value with a high level of customer service. For more information visit

About LiveRamp LiveRamp connects data across more than 100 digital marketing applications.  By onboarding customer data into the measurement, targeting, and personalization applications developed by our partners, we help leading brands eliminate data silos and run more efficient marketing programs.  For more information, visit

Thought Leadership Series: Why Native Ads Need Credibility, Targeting and Scale

Why Native Ads Need Credibility, Targeting and Scale
Native advertising is growing rapidly, but many marketers are still learning how to use it to its full potential. Currently, marketers seem to undervalue credibility, targeting and scale – the three critical ingredients for effective native advertising. If you’re new to native ads or struggling to make them work for you, it may be helpful to rebuild your approach around these three concepts.

The Power of Credibility.
Native ads were not designed to proclaim your product like a banner ad. Rather, they intend to highlight the benefits, credibility, knowledge and personality of your brand. Conveying a positive impression requires proper disclosure of ads and legitimate content, but it also relies on the credibility of the publisher sites on which you appear.

For example, native ads on sites such as The New York Times would carry more weight than ads on news sites that slap together borrowed content. Our expectation that we will read rational ideas and well-reported news on a particular publication lends credibility to all the content that appears on the site.  Unlike top tier publishers, sites with low content standards undermine your reputation and the value of your content.

So let’s say your company makes automobile accessories and you developed a pickup truck grille guard for the forthcoming aluminum Ford F-150.  You just wrote a polished article about the F-150 for your own blog that demonstrates your knowledge of pickup trucks and suggests that your auto accessories are going to draw on this technical depth. You can use native ads to draw readers to your article from credible sites such as major market or national news brands.

You can also drive readers to content that belongs to an independent publisher. For example, if Motor Trend gave your grille guard a positive mention, you could use native advertising to drive people to that article. At a minimum, you have to deliver people from a credible site to a credible article to make a positive impression on your audience.

The Need for Targeting.
In addition to achieving credibility, you need to target native ads at a very specific demographic. The F-150 is the bestselling pickup in the U.S., but it’s not of interest to everyone. So, it makes sense to target people who would care about your product and content because it would be more cost-efficient than targeting everyone. First-party data is a good start, but complementing it with third-party data would allow you to target people based on their internet search behavior, such as searching for after-market truck accessories.

Targeting the right person includes reaching them when they are in the right mindset. For example, Facebook might be great context for humor and entertaining content that friends like to pass around, but it’s not necessarily the best place for content with an educational edge. Instead, that content may work better on news sites, digital magazines and blogs where people go to learn. 

The Need for Scale
If targeting is about reaching the right people, then scale is about reaching a large number of people in your audience, not any audience. Great content only makes an impact when it reaches the right people in sufficient volume.

The only way to scale is to find your audience across a wide variety of relevant, high-quality sites. Working one-on-one with publishers is terribly inefficient when you need to reach 100+ million people. Instead, you should rely on native ad platforms that have large scale, can leverage third-party data, and can reach your audience through multiple channels.

Native Ad platforms enable you to scale up quickly and allow real-time marketing in response to hot news stories. For example, if you get a positive review, that’s a good time for you to promote the article and publicize the benefits of your product.

Great media content is rendered ineffective every day because it becomes lost on low-quality sites, is distributed poorly and fails to reach enough of the people that would care about the message. Ensuring your efforts consider credibility, proper targeting and scale is core to fully leveraging the power of native advertising.

What are some of the ways brands can keep native ads honest?
We think it’s actually easy for brands to keep native ads honest.  First and foremost, make sure your native ad provider explains how they protect brands, publishers and consumers from misleading practices. Does your native ad provider go as far as manually reviewing and approving ads and landing pages to ensure brands are disclosing content properly and consumers are protected? We can’t stress enough the importance of clearly labeling ad units and invite all native advertising companies to embrace best disclosure practices.

Second, ensure the use of transparent header language for native units and widgets. We recommend, “Offers and Articles from Around the Web.” This header clearly explains the mix of ads and content with which a consumer is about to engage. Headers such as “Recommended” or “More in the News” are simply misleading and we have strongly discouraged their use in the industry.

Next, if it’s an ad, make sure you tell the consumer. Many units integrate editorial content with ads. On some news sites, units have as many as eight thumbnails that alternate content with ads. As John Oliver mentioned, we understand that a consumer may not be able to distinguish ads from content across the several thumbnails. Ideally, true editorial content should be separated from ads promoting advertorial content. An alternative is to ensure the disclosure explains that the entire unit contains ads.

And finally, extend proper disclosure practices to landing pages. This practice is in the marketer’s own best interest. Even when a consumer sees our properly disclosed native ad, they could mistake advertorial landing pages for unbiased editorial content.  Better disclosure leads to better results. Marketers will benefit from better engagement if they extend the practice of proper disclosures to their landing pages.

For press inquires or to learn more about Adblade please email us by clicking here.

Three Ways For Publishers To Keep Native Ads Honest


Native advertising has been a buzzword in the industry for several years, but thanks to John Oliver’s rant against it on his HBO show “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver,” it brought the concept of native advertising to the masses. With 1.7 million views on YouTube after just a few weeks—as well as rapid spread across social media– it also brought up some valid points about native advertising and it’s sometimes deceptive nature.

In the segment, Oliver cited a study from the Interactive Advertising Bureau that looked into how native ads are perceived by consumers of the news. As Oliver points out, only 41% of the general news audience were able to recognize sponsored content as advertising and not editorial content.

What Oliver didn’t point out from the IAB study was that 60% of respondents would prefer to have advertising that told a story rather than sold a product – a key distinguisher of native ads. The segment also left out that some readers were much more apt to spot a native ad depending on what industry it’s in – 82% of entertainment consumers and 85% of business consumers felt sponsored content was easy to spot.

The segment didn’t entirely paint native advertising in a negative light. Oliver did point out that publishers are only doing what is necessary to stay alive. A fraction of 0.01% of every display ad view inspires a click. Advertisers need more value than that to continue to support media. It’s not only listicle specialists like Buzzfeed that are turning to native ads either, established and well-respected publishers like the New York Times are also jumping on the bandwagon.

To find out what publishers and advertisers can do to utilize native ads in a way that brings in revenue, but still adds value to the publication and avoids deceiving consumers – we talked with Ash Nashed is the CEO and founder of Adiant. The digital technology company operates two ad networks – Adblade and IndustryBrains – and just announced a native ad exchange that utilizes Data Management Platform technology to target ads.

Nashed shared three main ways that advertisers and publishers can keep native ads honest.

1. Use transparent header language for native units and widgets. 

Choice of language is critical in order for readers to understand the source of an article, Nashed said. Words like “Recommended” or “More in the News” are simply misleading, he said. Instead, he suggests something his ad exchange uses – “Offers and Articles from Around the Web.” The word “offers” is something that the general public has come to associate with paid promotions and “articles” shows there more than just promotional material in the link.

2. Include clear labeling even in native ad widgets

“Many native widgets integrate editorial content with paid distribution from other publishers, and then mix in ads,” Nashed said. Those widgets generally appear online at the end of an article or along the side bar of a site to encourage visitors to click for more content.

If the links in the widgets aren’t clearly labeled, that is deceptive to readers who may not be able to spot a native ad among all the widgets. All publishers should be aware of the labeling practices of any native widgets they choose to utilize. If each article link can’t be labeled, than a disclaimer for the whole set of widgets should be included.

3. Extend proper disclosure practices to landing pages.

Just like with the widgets, all places leading to a piece of sponsored content should be properly labeled. “Even when a consumer sees our properly disclosed native ad, they could mistake advertorial landing pages for unbiased editorial content,” Nashed said.  “That is why we review and approve advertiser landing pages to ensure they are appropriately labeled.”

So ultimately, everything comes down to full disclosure.

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Click here for the article.