How to Do YouTube Advertising Effectively: The Complete Guide

23 August, 2021  

As one of the leading social platforms and the number one for video content, YouTube advertising is a no-brainer option for video marketing. Not only does the platform have a global reach, but anyone can access it for free!

The thing is, designing and implementing a digital ads campaign isn’t easy. One can get all tangled up in the technical aspects, and new features are always coming out. Not to mention that most audiences can quickly grow tired of seeing the same ads all the time, so it requires a lot of adaptability as well.

So, do you want to know how to advertise on YouTube successfully?

Well, here’s a guide to help you navigate the world of YouTube advertising. We’ll cover the whats and hows for an effective ad campaign, and provide you with insight that helps you get the most out of them.

Why Advertise on YouTube?

If you are reading this, you probably already know YouTube video ads make for excellent marketing tools. But just so we are on the same page before moving forward, let’s quickly review three key things you got going for you once you start investing in YouTube video advertising:

  • Reach: Did you know that YouTube is not only a social platform but also a search engine? And the second largest, actually, after Google! Customers are on the hunt for products on YouTube, and you can find your target audience among them. It’s a pool of all ages, all sorts of interests, and from all over the world.
  • Metrics: A perk of YouTube advertising is its marketing tools. You can access all kinds of data on how your campaign is doing. It gives you insight into your audience, the effectiveness of your YouTube video ads, and where you are regarding your marketing goals.
  • Cost: Setting a budget for online video marketing can seem like a daunting proposition, but the YouTube advertising cost scheme is pretty streamlined and customizable so that you can focus on the campaign itself. You can set YouTube advertising cost limits for most ad formats – and will only pay if and when the ad campaign meets your intentions.

As you can see, there are very compelling reasons to use YouTube as your ad displaying platform. Now, let’s dive into what it takes to set up a YouTube ad.

Video marketing guide for 2020

YouTube Advertising Campaign: Key Elements

It’s time to craft the ad campaign that fits your needs best. But fret not; most of the elements we’ll discuss will surely sound familiar to most digital marketers out there and will be easy to pick up for everyone else!

The Video

It all starts at your YouTube channel, where you’ll upload your video. Most businesses use their channel as a video portfolio or video hosting solution, but your videos there can be set as public and drive organic views on top of your campaign, or as unlisted and only accessible as an ad.

As with any video, you’ll need to enhance all the components, not only the audiovisual aspects: title, description, and thumbnail should be up to par too.

The Objective

It comes down to a simple question: what do you want the audience to do after watching your ad?

The platform already permits advertisers to set focus on sales, leads, website traffic, product and brand consideration, and brand awareness and reach. As expected, this will most likely dictate the type of YouTube advertising you’ll be setting up.

The Target

Regarding target audiences, while broad-spectrum YouTube video ads might be sufficient for some, it’s less likely they’ll have a lasting impact on any. For a precise and successful campaign, it’s best if advertising feels as personal as possible to the target customer.

On YouTube, your ads will perform better with the right segmentation: demographic (age, gender, location) and by interests. In fact, YouTube allows you to pick from over a hundred interests to narrow your audiences and make your campaign more relevant.

The Bidding

How much does it cost to advertise on YouTube? There’s no simple answer to that. YouTube has different options for ad payment you can choose from, and they depend on what you want your audience to do regarding your ad (and your wallet, of course).

If you’re focusing on getting in front of as many eyes as possible, the cost-per-thousand viewable impressions (vCPM) could be the one for you.

In the same vein, cost-per-view (CPV) it’s a good option to also factor in engagement you will have to pay only if the user watches at least 30 seconds or clicks on the ad.

But if you are looking to increase lead generation and conversion, cost-per-click (CPC) will allow you to pay if the user demonstrates actual interest by clicking. It all comes down to what is relevant for your set marketing objective and your available budget.

The Metrics

The success of a marketing campaign resides in its results. And to keep a close eye on your campaign’s progress (or lack thereof!), the YouTube advertising setup comes with some useful metrics to consider. The more relevant ones being are view rate, clickthrough rate, quartile reporting, and targeting.

View rate conveys engagement, and clickthrough rate reflects click interactions. Quartile reporting shows you how engaging your ads are at different points of their runtime. And, of course, targeting lets you know which audiences you are being impacted the most.

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Types of YouTube Video Ads

Now that you know the elements you should pay most attention to, it is time to familiarize yourself with the range of options YouTube has for your marketing campaign.

Their key differences come in the form of placement, best-suited objectives, and chances of interaction, so we’ll focus on those. Let’s check it out:

Skippable In-Stream Ad

This ad type is the most likely to be bypassed by the audience. Therefore it needs to be immediately engaging and very well targeted.

  • Can appear before, during, or after a YouTube video.
  • Can be skipped after 5 seconds but has no length limit.
  • Can serve many marketing goals: generate leads, drive sales, increase web traffic, or brand awareness, which is why the explainer video style makes for such a good fit.

Bumper Ad

This little video nugget needs to be impactful and memorable in just an instant.

  • Can appear before, during, or after a YouTube video.
  • Can’t be longer than 6 seconds and can’t be skipped.
  • Best suited for brand visibility as a marketing goal.

ebook: How to rank N1 on Youtube

Non-Skippable In-Stream Ad

Like the bumper ad, this one holds the audience captive. But it doesn’t mean you can slack – try to keep it entertaining and relevant to your target.

  • Can appear before, during, or after a YouTube video.
  • Can’t be longer than 15 seconds and can’t be skipped.
  • Best suited for brand visibility as a marketing goal.

Video Discovery Ad

A nice change of pace from the in-stream ads, video discovery will need a much stronger lure to catch the user’s eye with nothing more than a still image thumbnail and a short text.

  • Appears in places such as YouTube search results, suggested videos, or YouTube mobile app’s feed.
  • Shows as a thumbnail with a short caption, redirecting to the video when clicking on it.
  • Works best for the buyer’s stage of brand and product consideration.

Out-Stream Ad

This type of YouTube advertising is meant to have a wider reach through mobile devices while keeping the budget in check.

  • Can only be published on mobile websites and apps.
  • Auto-plays on mute. Audio can be activated by the user.
  • Best suited for brand visibility as a marketing goal.

Masthead Ad

This ad has a short but busy life. Very event-orientated, the masthead ad packs tremendous reach and impact.

  • Can be displayed at the feed’s top on YouTube’s desktop or mobile sites and its mobile and TV apps.
  • Auto-plays on mute. On YouTube’s desktop site, it will play for only 30 seconds, while doing so fully on the other displays.
  • Perfect for impactful, short-term reach: product announcements, time-sensitive occurrences.

6 Useful Tips for YouTube Video Advertising

So now you know how to put ads on YouTube videos and platforms. But if you are still unsure if you can pull it off, these tips and tricks can help you see it through!

  • Wait at least two weeks after publishing your ad campaign to measure its results. Once you do, remember that you can introduce modifications according to its performance.
  • Non-skippable YouTube video advertising pieces don’t register metrics, so maybe don’t start there if you are new to YouTube ads. It is better to have data on how your campaign is performing until you feel comfortable with what works and doesn’t.
  • To avoid exhausting your campaign, it is a good idea to alternate between at least two different ads. It will keep your strategy fresh and relevant.
  • Learn and exploit everything YouTube has at your service. Many video features such as close caption and video sequencing can help your ad stand out without putting pressure on your budget.
  • The sweet spot for a short YouTube ad is over 10 seconds but not much more than 12. Less than that, and it can’t be tracked, and much over it will be detrimental to the impact.
  • Your brand should appear around the 5 seconds mark for best results.

Before You Go

If you are a business looking for a way to show your brand, or a content creator trying to understand how to advertise on your YouTube channel, we hope you have found everything you need here.

Either way, don’t forget one of the advantages of online video marketing is that it allows for experimentation. So don’t be afraid to break the mold and play around with all the possibilities. With metrics, you can try out different ideas and compare results to see what works best.

And what makes YouTube advertising an exciting platform is that your video not only performs as an ad but can also be found on YouTube and Google searches. Organic views and interactions will benefit you at no cost. So get onto it!

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