Video is one of the most shareable types of content online, which is why it has become an integral part of brands’ marketing and advertising strategies. YouTube is the second largest search engine behind Google, and with more than 1 billion unique visitors each month, it’s a platform that should be on every advertiser’s radar.
You might already be using YouTube as part of your content strategy, but before you dive in with advertising in mind, it’s important to know what’s being offered, as well as what’s expected of you. Here we take a look at some of the different types of ads and resources available to you. We’ll also review success stories from some of the world’s biggest brands.
YouTube Advertising Formats
There are several types of ads that can appear near your videos once you’ve enabled video monetization on your YouTube Channel. If you’ve ever spent time on YouTube, then you’re probably already familiar with some of these formats.
One of the most common ad units is the TrueView in-stream ad, which gives viewers a choice and control over which advertisers’ messages they want to see and when. They are skippable video ads that are inserted before, during, or after the main video. Advertisers are only charged when the viewer watches 30 seconds of the ad or watches to the ad’s completion — whichever is shorter.
You can also choose to run non-skippable in-stream ads. Unlike TrueView in-stream ads, these must be watched in their entirety before the viewer can continue watching the selected content. It’s important to note that while non-skippable in-stream ads might generate higher revenue than other ad formats, they also have a higher abandonment rate. It’s up to you to determine the best balance between views/watch time and revenue for your Channel.
Another popular option is the InVideo ad, which is a transparent overlay ad that appears on the lower portion of your video. These ads typically appear at the 15-second mark and can be closed by the viewer if desired. InVideo ads generate “significantly” more revenue for partners, and can be enabled through the Monetization tab on your Video Manager page.
And finally, display ads, or banners, run across all areas of the site except the homepage. They’re available as a 300×250 ad that appears to the right of the feature video and above the video suggestions list. These are shown by default if you’re monetizing a video.
Keep in mind that your video ads will also be able to reach customers on the go. Twenty-five percent of all YouTube views happen from a mobile device. And in addition to driving awareness, the platform now supports app-install ads, making it a powerful promotional driver for your mobile app.
YouTube Advertising Success Stories
The online retailer ModCloth created TrueView video ad campaigns with strong call-to-action overlays to increase brand engagement, find new customers, and drive sales. Its average TrueView campaign had an 18 percent clickthrough rate and allowed the brand to reach even more customers at a ninth of the cost of its average search campaign. Additionally, ModCloth was able to convert customers into brand ambassadors who submitted user-generated content to video contests.
Similarly, RevZilla Motorsports implemented a comprehensive TrueView in-stream video ad campaign in hopes of increasing traffic from YouTube videos to its e-commerce site. As a result, the brand’s YouTube Channel received 7 million views and tripled its subscriber base in just a few months. Additionally, RevZilla achieved revenue growth of more than 50 percent for the past three years.
The toy company Rokenbok turned to YouTube ads to build relationships with a key demographic of viewers — families searching for construction and train-related videos on YouTube. In turn, the company was able to get families to learn about Rokenbok toys through fun and educational videos, as well as drive sales through its e-commerce site. As a result of its efforts, 50 percent of Rokenbok’s customers come from YouTube, which is now the number one source of traffic to its website.
Resources for Advertisers
In addition to success stories, YouTube provides countless resources for brands interested in advertising on its platform. There are several help tutorials that take you step-by-step through YouTube advertising. Additionally, you can read up on advanced advertising techniques for larger brands as well as YouTube’s advertising policies and guidelines. All of this and much more can be found on the platform’s advertising resources page.
Jennifer Beese: Jennifer Beese has worked as a community manager and social media strategist. When she’s not writing, you can find her studying anatomy and physiology—she literally has a skeleton in her closet—or under the stars with her telescope.