YouTube Shorts Guide to Running Shoppable Ads

Urgent news from a Youtube ads agency:

YouTube ‘Shorts’ Ads are the new cool kids on the block. It's like getting the perfect mix of Vine, Instagram Reels, and TikTok, all in one package, with a cherry on top — ads that actually work! 

As of May 2022, you can catch Shorts ads popping up between those oh-so-trendy organic videos, just like they do on Instagram Reels and TikTok. 

But that's not all! 

YouTube is taking things up a notch by including linked product feeds in their Shorts ads. So, get your marketing hats on, because now you can drive more targeted conversions than ever before!

You see, YouTube ‘Shorts’ Ads are the new cool kids on the block. 

It's like getting the perfect mix of Vine, Instagram Reels, and TikTok, all in one package, with a cherry on top — ads that actually work! But don't just take our word for it, let's explore the recent updates and exciting features of YouTube Shorts Ads, including product feeds and more!

‘Shorts’ and Sweet: How to Get Your Ads on YouTube ‘Shorts’ in a Snap!

You know what they say: short and sweet gets the views and clicks! That's why you gotta hop on the Shorts bandwagon and advertise your brand in the Shorts feed. 

Whether you're trying to promote your app or get people to take action, creating a Video Action or App campaign is the way to go.  

The setup process for both campaigns is so easy — even your grandma can do it (well, maybe not, but you get the point). We'll show you exactly how to create a Video Action campaign and even how to come up with short-form creative that'll make your competitors shake in their boots.

#1: Initiate a New YouTube Video Action Campaign

Access your Google Ads account dashboard and click to create a new campaign.

Select a campaign objective that supports YouTube placements, such as brand awareness and reach, product and brand consideration, website traffic, leads, or sales. Then, select Video as the campaign type.

Based on the chosen objective, you might need to make additional selections.

For instance, a conversion action must be selected for leads and sales campaigns. For a product and brand consideration campaign, like the example here, choose between campaign subtype options.

Proceed to set up the basic campaign details, including budget, start date, and an optional end date. If you want your campaign to be exclusive to YouTube, deselect Video Partners on the Display Network under the Networks drop-down, as this option would otherwise expand your campaign reach beyond YouTube.

Keep in mind, some objectives necessitate the Display Network.

In standard Video Action campaigns, adding related videos boosts views and engagement. However, the Shorts feed currently doesn't display related videos.

To optimise for the Shorts feed, leave the Related Videos section empty.

YouTube Shorts feed currently doesn't display related videos so leave the Related Videos section empty to optimize your Shorts feed.

#2: Set Up Device Targeting

As of October 2022, Google Ads doesn't provide an option for advertisers to run YouTube campaigns exclusively on the Shorts feed. Instead, all Video Action campaigns automatically scale to the Shorts feed.

To increase the likelihood of your ad appearing in the Shorts feed, you can configure your campaign to target mobile devices, which support the Shorts feed. Note that while short-form videos can be displayed on any device, they may not appear as polished or perform as well on computers, tablets, or TV screens.

To target the Shorts feed on mobile devices, click the Additional Settings toggle and open the Devices panel. Next, select Set Specific Targeting for Devices and uncheck everything except Mobile Phones.

You have the option to target specific operating systems, device models, and networks. However, narrowing down device targeting further could result in inefficient ad delivery. For Video Action campaigns, it's recommended to target all mobile phone placements.

#3: Develop a Target Audience

Utilize Google Ads' targeting options to connect with your ideal customers. If you've chosen to target only mobile devices, remember that your potential audience size is already limited, so strategize your targeting accordingly.

For instance, employ Google Ads' people targeting options to reach users based on demographics or audience segments. Your customer match lists and audience segments derived from YouTube channel or website activity are excellent starting points. Additionally, use Google Ads' affinity and in-market audiences to connect with people who share relevant interests.

To target users based on video topics or keywords, Google Ads' content targeting options are also available. However, Google Ads advises against combining content targeting options as doing so can limit your reach.

Since Shorts ads appear between short-form videos, selecting placement options like YouTube videos or channels won't help in defining your target audience. Therefore, if you plan to use content targeting, it's best to focus on keywords or topics.

#4: Produce a Video Ad

If you have already uploaded a YouTube short to your account that you want to feature in your Video Action campaign, the next step is straightforward.

Create a Video Ad Using an Existing Short

Open YouTube Studio in a separate tab and locate the video you wish to use. Copy the URL and paste it into the Google Ads interface.

Next, choose a video ad format. In most cases, you'll want to opt for Skippable In-Stream Ad, which plays before or after other videos. Note that in-feed video ads appear alongside related content, on the YouTube homepage, or in YouTube search results, which won't help you reach the Shorts feed.

YouTube Shorts video ads must be at least 5 seconds long and can last up to 60 seconds. Keep in mind that if your chosen short-form video is under 11 seconds, ad views won't contribute to the video view count on YouTube. So, what should be the ideal length for your Shorts ad? Test various video lengths to determine what yields the best results for your campaign. Since viewers can scroll past Shorts ads at any time without waiting for 5 seconds, it's crucial to capture their attention immediately and keep them engaged.

After adding a YouTube video to the ad, input the URL for your landing page. Though adding a call to action (CTA) is optional for Video Action campaigns, it's particularly important for Shorts ads. Select one of the premade CTA options or create your own, accompanied by a 15-character headline.

Create a New Short for the Video Ad

If you don't have a short-form video for your Video Action campaign, you can create and upload a new one before proceeding with ad creation, given that you already have an idea in mind. There are a couple of options available:

Utilise the YouTube mobile app to film or create a Shorts ad, where you can access Shorts editing tools such as filters and narration.

Develop a Shorts ad using a third-party app and upload it via the desktop version of YouTube Studio, which doesn't offer Shorts editing tools.

If you're interested in advertising on the Shorts feed but have a limited budget for short-form video production, Google Ads offers a convenient way to create short-form videos using a few images. You can access this video creation tool in two ways:

  • Navigate to the Tools and Settings menu from your Google Ads dashboard, select Asset Library, and click to create a new video; or
  • During the Video Action campaign setup, click on Need a Video? Create One in a Few Steps.

In either case, you'll access the Google Ads video template library, where you can choose from various vertical video templates that are perfect for the Shorts feed. Some templates focus on brand awareness, while others are more suitable for sales and conversions.

Pick a template that aligns with your objectives and include all necessary elements. For instance, you'll need brand colos, a company logo, and at least one image. You'll also have to compose a few lines of text, including a CTA.

Additionally, you can select royalty-free tracks from the YouTube audio library to make your video more engaging. After completing the video, you can add a voiceover using tools available in the Google Ads asset library.

Google Ads will automatically publish these ads to your YouTube channel or an ad-only storage channel, depending on your preference. Regardless of your choice, you can easily incorporate these videos into your YouTube campaign by following the steps mentioned earlier. Simply copy the URL and paste it into the ad.

Based on the bid strategy for your Video Action campaign, you may need to set a Maximum cost per view (CPV) for your ad. 

Unsure where to begin?

Utilise Google Ads' suggestions to establish an initial bid. You can adjust the bid while reviewing campaign performance to optimise the ad.

To include multiple ads in the ad group, click New Video Ad in the Ad Creation drop-down. Follow the steps above to create additional ads, build out the ad group, and increase ad delivery opportunities. Then, launch the campaign.

Our Two Cents (From The Experts At Our YouTube Ads Agency)

As YouTube Shorts' viewership continues to skyrocket, marketers have a golden opportunity to capitalise on this rapidly growing platform. Remember to test various video lengths, create compelling calls to action, and optimise your bids for maximum results. 

Take the first step now, and embrace the potential of YouTube Shorts advertising to elevate your brand's success.

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