You’ve put in the hours, done your homework, and planned everything out perfectly. You’ve perfected your script, storyboarded your ad, found the right talent, shot the ad and edited it. The result can be a blockbuster video ad! But with all that time and effort invested, you can’t just embed your ad in a random video and hope it reaches the right audience.
Great content is almost certain to become sticky sooner or later, but it’s important for you to be proactive about getting the attention of prospective clients and educating those unfamiliar with your brand. Running a series of YouTube ads is one way to make sure more of your target audience is going to find that video you’ve worked so hard to produce.
Advertising on YouTube is different from running a pay-per-click ad or a paid social campaign. YouTube has certain specific constraints, but it also has lots of options. You need some basic knowledge before you start your next video project so you can make the most of your ad possibilities.
A TrueView ad can include people, dialogue, and music that’s been retrieved with permission (or is considered royalty-free). You don’t want to run a standard promotional commercial though. Since your ads can be skipped, you’ll want to give your audience a real reason to keep watching. “Product plugs” generally don’t grab the views that you’ll want. Instead, tell some sort of story with your video ad. People love seeing case studies of others who’ve faced a struggle that they can empathize with. This sort of ad is harder to skip and it will make your brand more memorable.
The TrueView ads also provide you with lots of information you can use to determine how they’re performing. You can see data on completed views, partial views, click-through rates on your calls-to-action, whether your video drives channel subscriptions, any views sourced from a user sharing your content, and views on the brand’s other content that can be connected to a user who’s viewed your ad. These actions can help you understand the value of your video ad dollars—and where to focus your budget to increase your results.
Non-skippable pre-roll ads can give you some of the same features as TrueView ads do. You can include people, dialogue, audio, and other elements that represent your brand—providing you can do it in 15 to 20 seconds. Because these ads are non-skippable, your best option is to include a call-to-action so you can optimize the viewer’s attention. In other words, encourage your viewers to click on your ad and receive something useful in return.
To set up your campaign, first go to your Google AdWords dashboard.
- The red “+ Campaign” button on the left-hand tab has a drop-down menu where you should choose “Video.”
- Enter a name for your campaign. Make sure you have also checked the “Video” type from that drop-down menu as well.
- Then select “In-Stream or video discovery ads” to make sure your videos will be in TrueView format.
- Set your budget per day and your delivery style. The latter will be either standard, where your ads will show evenly over a period of time, or accelerated, which shows the ads as quickly as possible.
- Now, decide where you want your ads to appear. With “YouTube Search,” your ads will appear in search results and on the YouTube home page, channel pages, and video pages. With “YouTube Videos,” your ads will appear as in-display or in-stream videos. With this option, you can also choose to show your ads on Google partner sites, apps, and the Display Network. You should try some ads in both YouTube Search and YouTube Videos so you can see the difference each ad makes.
- Define the location where you want the ads shown. You can also exclude certain locations if you want.
- Your YouTube ad is now ready for publication—and ready to net you some potential clients!
And finally, don’t be afraid to experiment with different ads to see what your particular audiences enjoy more, and remember to track your results whenever you test a new ad.
To your success!