With nearly 2 billion monthly active users, YouTube is more than just a video streaming platform. It’s one of the most powerful marketing weapons in your arsenal. You can use YouTube advertising to attract leads to your website, advertise your products and services, and increase visibility. Here’s how to use YouTube for explosive growth.
What is YouTube Advertising?
YouTube Ads is a digital ad platform that lets you advertise your products and services on one of the world’s most visited websites. Unlike other ad platforms, however, you only pay money for advertising space when someone chooses to watch your video. This lets you reach the right people at the right time without paying upfront.
“You don’t need to get your ad in front of everybody — just the people likely to be interested in what you have to offer. Sports fans around the block. Fashionistas around the world. And everyone in between. They’re all on YouTube,” says YouTube on its website.
You’re probably familiar with YouTube ads already. These are the commercials that appear at the beginning of videos (and sometimes in the middle of videos), above the video suggestions list, in the lower portion of videos, and elsewhere.
There are many types of YouTube ads, which appear on both desktop and mobile devices. These include:
- Display ads
- Overlay ads
- Skippable video ads
- Non-skippable video ads
- Bumper ads
- Sponsored cards
The great thing is, you get to choose the ad formats that display on your videos. You can use just one method from the list above or several different advertising techniques.
Why is YouTube Advertising So Important?
Advertising on YouTube is important for your business because the platform has an incredible reach. And research shows that YouTube ads resonate with consumers more than other mediums, too.
Here are three YouTube ad stats that will blow your mind:
- YouTube reaches more 18- to 34-year-olds in the United States than any TV network. This includes ABC, CBS, Fox, and NBC.
- 83% of paid YouTube ads receive attention, compared to just 45% of TV commercials. It seems, then, that digital advertising is the way forward.
- 32% of internet users engage with YouTube ads — that’s more than Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter.
Still not convinced?
Since 2016, the number of small and medium-sized businesses who advertise on YouTube has doubled. If you haven’t invested in this marketing method, make sure you do by the end of 2019!
How to Get Started
First, you need to create a Google AdWords account. This is relatively straightforward. Just enter a few details, and you’re good to go. Sign up for your free account here.
Next, link your AdWords account with your YouTube account.
Once you’ve linked your accounts, you can create a wide range of ad campaigns on YouTube. You will need to choose the locations where you want your ads to display on the platform — before a video starts, during a video, above the suggestions list, etc.
Then you can customize your ad settings for more growth. Target different devices, reach different age groups, tailor content to different regions — the choice is yours. You can personalize your ad campaigns in the Advanced Settings section on your AdWords dashboard.
Create Your Own Ads
Here are some video advertising concepts that provide you with real value:
- Think outside the box. With skippable ads, you only have a few seconds to catch the attention of your audience. Use graphics, music, voiceovers, and other visual and audio effects to demand attention on both desktop and mobile devices.
- Drive action. Include a call-to-action at the end of your ad, as well as a link to your social media pages or product pages. This will increase traffic and boost sales. “Click here to find out more” will generate interest in your product or service, for example.
- Use closed captioning. This will help you appeal to all audiences on YouTube. Alternatively, include translations in other languages, which will reach more customers in a quicker amount of time.
- Use humor for more engagement. “Viewers are more inclined to watch ads that make them laugh, and we’ve seen that humor is associated with higher brand awareness and ad recall,” says Google, who owns YouTube.
If you create your own ads for YouTube, remember that all ads need to follow YouTube’s advertising standards. Learn more about creating video ads and specs at Google’s Display Specs Help Center.
Create Your Own Video Content
You don’t need to create any video content to use YouTube advertising. Uploading your own videos to the platform, however, will increase your reach considerably, and you can advertise on these videos for more visibility and growth. Product demos, how-to guides, explainer vids — all of these types of video content do well on the platform and will expose your products and services to a global audience.
You need to upload videos on a regular basis, too. This will boost engagement and help you develop a loyal following on the platform. Remember, the more hits your videos have, the more views your ads will receive.
“If you’ve developed a decent pool of subscribers, viewers will be counting on you to create, edit and upload new content. This adds relevancy to your brand,” says Business News Daily.
Example of an Awesome YouTube Ad Campaign
So, you want to create a YouTube ad campaign? Great. First, decide on the type of ads you want to display on your videos.
As you read above, there are several different types of YouTube ads that you can use to advertise products and services.
Generally speaking, non-skippable ads — ads that viewers have to sit through at the beginning or during a video — have higher levels of engagement. These can be up to 15-20 seconds long (depending on the viewer’s location) and are sold on a cost-per-mile (CPM) basis. This means that you pay for the number of ad impressions after people watch a video.
You can also use skippable ads (also called TrueView ads). People find these less intrusive because, unlike non-skippable ads, they don’t need to sit through them in order to watch a video. TrueView ads are effective because most of them run for up to 30 seconds, making them longer than non-skippable ads.
Using a combination of non-skippable and TrueView ads can work wonders for your YouTube advertising campaign. But to really generate results, you need to think up creative advertising ideas that viewers will love.
The secret to an awesome YouTube ad campaign is the type of content you upload to the platform. Sure, viewers have to watch non-skippable ads if they want to see a video, but creative must-see content will prevent people from hitting the “Back” button on their internet browsers.
So, what makes great YouTube content? First, you need to keep your content relevant. Reach your target audience with videos that matter to them.
Other Ways to Boost Interest in Your Videos
There are several other ways you can optimize your YouTube content. As a result, more people will watch your videos and see your ads. Here are a few tips that you need to know about:
- Encourage your viewers to subscribe to your channel and turn on notifications. This means they will receive alerts when you upload new content to your channel.
- Encourage your viewers to like and share your content. Liked content on YouTube appears on the platform’s Trending pages and generally receives more attention.
- Include links to your website in the description box under every YouTube video you upload to the platform. If you advertise a particular item in a video, post a URL to the specific product page.
- This one might sound a little premature, but make sure your website can cope with the influx of traffic from your YouTube videos. There’s nothing worse than your server being unable to handle all that demand. In fact, you could lose out on cold, hard sales as a result of any downtime.
Tracking Ad Performance
So you’ve created some brand-spankin’ new content for your YouTube channel and set up your AdWords account. The rest is easy, right? Well, no. You need to monitor your AdWords campaigns to make sure the right people are watching your ads. Thankfully, this is pretty easy.
First, you need to link your AdWords account with Google Analytics. Here’s how to do it:
- Log into Google Analytics (or create a free account if you don’t have one).
- Click “Admin.”
- Click Google “Ads Linking” in the “Property” column.
- Select the Google AdWords account that you want to link.
- Click “Link Accounts.”
Once you’ve done all of this, you can check out ad performance in real time and see where all your ad impressions are coming from. As a retailer or marketer, this is really important. In fact, Google Analytics provides you with valuable insights and intelligence into your viewers so you can optimize future YouTube advertising campaigns.
Here are some of the key performance indicators (KPIs) that you might want to track:
- Click-through rate: This is the number of people who clicked on one of your ads.
- Impressions: The number of people who watched one of your ads.
- Conversion rate: The number of people who clicked on one of your ads and became customers.
Advanced YouTube Advertising
Once you’ve mastered the basics of YouTube ads, you can invest in more advanced marketing techniques that provide you with a return on your investment. Here are some unconventional ways to advertise on the platform:
Homepage Ads: You can purchase ad space on the YouTube home page. This can be expensive, but it will expose your brand to a large number of people quickly.
Remarketing: This is a technique that lets you reach people who have already watched your videos and ads. Remarketing is an effective marketing method because you can target consumers already interested in your products and services.
Omnichannel Marketing: This technique doesn’t just involve YouTube but other websites as well. The trick is to create an advertising campaign that runs across several different platforms at the same time, which will increase exposure and convert more prospects into customers. You might want to run your ads on Facebook and Twitter, as well as YouTube, for example.
YouTube advertising is a smart, effective way to increase interest in your products and services, boost visibility, and move customers through your sales and marketing funnels. If you’ve never used this advertising method, it’s definitely something to consider to grow your audience and attract more customers. Need some help? In addition to creating content for its clients, Tier10 develops and executes data-driven YouTube strategies to increase and maintain brand awareness for its clients.