In this article, we will cover everything you need to know about advertising on Youtube. You will learn how YouTube Ads work, what are the YouTube ad types(and when to use each), how to create an effective YouTube Ad, and whether or not YouTube Ads are right for your business.
YouTube is the best place to advertise online right now for the following reasons:
Because YouTube is owned by Google, there are several similarities between how Google Ads and YouTube Ads work.
YouTube Ads work on a bidding auction basis (similar to Google Ads). Advertisers enter a bid to place their ads on YouTube.
You determine the audiences(and placements) that your ads are shown to through your ad targeting options (discussed further below).
Depending on the type of ad format you choose, you are charged by Google only when one of 3 things occur:
A question many people ask when considering running YouTube Ads is, “how much do YouTube Ads cost?”. Check out our YouTube Ads pricing guide where we provide a detailed breakdown of YouTube Ad costs, plus our budget tips for YouTube ads beginners.
There are several types of YouTube Ads to choose from. Which YouTube ad type you should go with depends entirely on what your objectives are with YouTube ads.
Whether you want to drive conversions, build brand awareness and consideration, or retarget your existing customer base, there is a suitable ad format for you.
Skippable in-stream ads: Skippable in-stream ads play either before, mid, or after a video on YouTube. Skippable means that you can choose to skip the ad after 5 seconds. You are only charged when 1) the viewer watches the entire duration of the ad (or at least 30 sec, whichever comes first) or 2) the viewer clicks an element of the ad (such as the CTA button).
Non-skippable in-stream ads: These are ads that play before, mid, or after a video on YouTube. These are ads that last up to 15 seconds. Unlike skippable in-stream ads, viewers do not get the option to skip the ad.
Bumper ads: These ads play before a video on YouTube, and last up to 6 seconds long. Viewers do not get the option to skip the ad (similar to non-skippable in-stream ads).
In-Feed Video Ads (formerly known as Video Discovery Ads): In-feed ads appear in the YouTube Home feed, Watch feed, and Search feed. There are 3 components to an in-feed ad: a thumbnail, copy (headline and description), and the video ad. People have to click on thumbnail (or copy) in order to proceed through and watch your video ad. You pay only when a viewer chooses to watch your video by clicking on the thumbnail.
Masthead: These video ads are featured on the YouTube homepage, and autoplay with no sound. To get started with this ad format, you need to contact a Google sales rep.
Overlay ads: overlay ads are non-video ads. These ads are banner-type pop-up ads that overlay a video. They are minimally obstructive, taking up only 20% of the bottom portion of a video, and viewers can close these ads by clicking on the “X” button.
One of the key benefits of advertising on YouTube is the wide range of targeting options to choose from, including:
YouTube Ads offers advanced targeting options to help you show your ads to the right audience. Check out our YouTube Ads Targeting Guide for a thorough breakdown of all the targeting options available on YouTube.
Nailing the Creative is the #1 most important thing to making YouTube video ads work.
You see, what we have learned through years of YouTube video ads experience + millions of ad spend for our clients is that having great video ad creatives are essential to profitable scaling with YouTube advertising.
An effective video ad on YouTube makes the difference between a successful ad campaign that gets you more leads and sales at a positive return on ad spend (ROAS) and an unprofitable campaign with costly cost-per-click, low clickthrough rate, and low conversions.
So what makes a great video ad? Here are 4 best practices for YouTube Video Ads Creatives:
The most important component of an effective video ad on YouTube is to have a great script. Your copywriting needs to be able to connect with your target audience, address their pain points, and demonstrate how you can solve their problems.
Based on our experience running and scaling video ads on YouTube for 5+ years with clients across multiple niches, we have found that a high-converting ad typically has the following 4 elements in the script:
It is important to shoot a high-quality, professional video. This does not mean you need fancy video equipment or gear. If you are just starting out with YouTube Ads, all you really need is an iPhone and a gimbal (to prevent shakiness while filming).
Unlike other ad platforms (such as Facebook and Instagram), viewers on YouTube watch videos with the sound ON. What this means for YouTube ads, is that you need to incorporate audio to guide viewers through the video ad.
A highly converting and engaging video ad incorporates multiple cuts, transitions, and visual elements throughout the video (zoom in and outs, b-roll, texts, etc).
See Also: How Long Should A YouTube Ad Be
One question we get asked frequently is, “Does YouTube ads work for my niche or industry?”
Whether or not YouTube Ads will work for your business depends on several factors.
Having great ads is only one part of the equation that makes any ad campaign successful or not. The other component is what happens after a user clicks on your ad (this is where your marketing funnel comes in).
Having a proven offer and an effective funnel are 2 fundamental components of making YouTube Ads (or any paid ads for that matter) work.
Ask yourself this: “has my product or offer been proven on other platforms?” If you run ads on Facebook, and have found that
These 2 indications mean that you have a proven offer and an effective funnel that converts cold audiences into customers.
Consider what your conversion rate is on both paid and organic channels, and use this metric as a benchmark to aim for with YouTube ads.
To succeed with YouTube ads, you need to work on producing your ad, experiment and test different creatives and audiences, and allow time for Google to analyze and interpret your ad performance data, so that you can make data-driven decisions to optimize your ad campaigns.
From our experience, it can take one or even two months to get clear profitable results with YouTube Ads, provided that you have a proven offer and funnel. This is because, unlike other paid ad platforms, it takes more time, trial and error, and ad spend to find 1) the winning ad creative and 2) target audience combination.
The good news is that since YouTube Ads are great for scaling, this means that once you are dialed in with the winning ad combination, it is entirely possible to scale your ad campaigns profitably.
We also highly recommend conducting some competitor research to analyze whether your particular niche can perform well with YouTube Ads. Check out our video below where we reveal the YouTube ad spy tools to help you find the top performing ads on YouTube by industry (both free and paid options).
People come to YouTube with a specific intention...
Giving you, the business owner, the perfect opportunity to find and get in front of your ideal customer.
YouTube Ads are definitely worth the investment of your time and money to help you diversify your sources of traffic and scale your business.
Businesses both big (think Klaviyo, Indeed, Wix, MasterClass, and Purple Mattress) and small have successfully incorporated YouTube Ads into their marketing strategy. Take a look at our YouTube Ads case studies to see how we helped businesses scale profitably by advertising on YouTube.
If you want to find out more about what we could do for your business, jump on a free strategy call with us to know how we can help you grow your brand!
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