Flip books make it easy to sell directly from the pages of a digital publication. However, there’s a general lack of understanding of how to game it to one’s advantage as a publisher.
Some publishers enhance content with advertorial elements. Some, with all flipbook’s possibilities, are pursuing unconventional, unethical modes of advertising simply to boost revenues.
You can do better by not only respecting readers but providing something of more value to both them and the advertiser. Make your ads take advantage of the new methods of interfacing with mobile and tablet devices without falling into the trap of feeling bloated and overly intrusive.
1) Don’t try to fool your users
There are some publishers that will offer an ad-free app experience initially only to start serving ads later. In some ways it makes sense to let a user engage with the app first and, hopefully, enjoy using it so much that they don’t mind when ads appear later. But this can also backfire; consumers don’t like feeling like they’ve been tricked or bait-and-switched, and that alone can cause a backlash.
It is far better to be upfront about the app’s revenue model, and allow the user to decide how to engage from there. (Hint: a brief reminder at download or on a welcome page that ads keep the app free can go a long way toward generating goodwill.)
2) Integrate, don’t interrupt
This should be a simple concept to understand, but many apps continue to rely on popups and static interstitials, which take the user out of the app experience and, more often than not, will generate a negative response. Instead, offer advertisers ad opportunities that are integrated into the app, such as native ads, which have already shown high engagement rates in the desktop display space and are gaining popularity among mobile advertisers as well. Native ads not only provide minimal disruption of app use but also help increase engagement due to their inherent relevance to the user and his or her interests.
3) Keep it relevant
This has been drilled into our heads over and over with regard to digital advertising on any channel and it absolutely applies to the app environment. Consumers don’t love ads anyway, but being constantly confronted with ads that have absolutely no relation to their needs and interests is doubly bothersome.
On the other hand, consumers are less likely to respond negatively if the ads they see are at least useful to them in some way. As a developer/publisher, ensure that your advertisers are appropriate for your user base overall, and then offer them ad opportunities such as rewarded video that offer a tangible benefit to the user and drive engagement for the brand.