Video content is invaluable. You’ve seen how a viral video can make—or break—a company.
Creating valuable video content is only the beginning, though. If you don’t have a real plan in place for advertising, even high-quality material won’t get you the results you deserve. A marketing strategy for your video content may be what you need to bring your business that next-level success.
Aren’t sure where to start when it comes to putting together your marketing plan? We’ve got you covered. In this article, we’ll teach you how to grow your Australian business by using YouTube advertising.
Why Your Business Needs YouTube
Have you been on the fence about whether or not YouTube is worth investing your time and energy into? Maybe you’ve found creating video content is more time-consuming or expensive than you’d anticipated.
You may be thinking it’ll be better for you, in the long run, to stick with other advertising approaches. Trust me when I tell you that’s not the case. Yes, making quality video content can be expensive, but it doesn’t have to be.
With today’s technology and available platforms, high-quality videos can be made at a much lower price point. It’s true that you may need to invest some time into honing your skills. But, the cost to produce and edit doesn’t need to break the bank.
Once you have the material in hand, YouTube is a great way to get your advertisement out there. Unlike traditional television commercials, YouTube spots aren’t expensive. Even better than that, YouTube gets an incredible amount of traffic.
Every day, viewers watch more than one billion hours of videos on YouTube. That’s an incredible amount of time—time you could be tapping into by advertising your product and company on the platform. It’s not only about the number of viewers, though.
Statistics indicate that viewers who watch a complete advertisement on YouTube are more likely to respond positively to a CTA (call to action). Liking, following, subscribing, or following a link are 23 times more likely after completing a YouTube video. You can see that kind of follow-through can quickly add up to real benefits for your business.
The statistics don’t lie—advertising on YouTube is incredibly effective. Part of why it works—besides the unbelievable amount of traffic and high visibility—has to do with the targeting capability.
Through YouTube’s platform, you can create an ideal customer profile. This profile will help connect your advertisement with those viewers who are most likely to become customers. Combining the sophisticated targeting options with the incredible success rate of YouTube video advertising and you have an equation for success.
How to Make YouTube Advertising Work for You
When setting up your YouTube campaign, you’ll have some choices about how to get your material to your audience. There are a few different ways you can implement your video advertising.
You may find one approach works better for you than another. You may also find that, though they’re all effective, there are times one is the better choice for your business. We’ll give you a synopsis of each YouTube video advertising option here so you can identify which one’s right for you.
TrueView In-Stream Ads
This ad-style is one of the most common you’ll come across. It’s the traditional advertisement you’re probably most familiar with, located at the front of a video. Like a trailer at a movie theater, it’s an advert designed to catch you while you’re fully invested in the experience.
On YouTube, a viewer is frequently given the option to skip the commercial—but not until a preset amount of time has passed. Your viewer may choose to opt out of watching the rest of the video. Even if they do, they’ll be exposed to at least a few seconds of your advertisement.
Don’t focus on the bad here, though. Yes, some people will opt out of watching the advertisement. Many others will not. Knowing how the advertisement plays out for your viewer can help you make the most of your content—and your window of exposure.
Remember that even truncated viewing is a good thing as regular exposure can add up. It promotes familiarity and can establish a relationship and rapport between your company and your consumer.
Every viewer will need to wait for the initial part of the advertisement. Be sure to include the most important information at the front of your advertisement. This will ensure your viewer has the opportunity to file away information about your company.
Heavily brand your opening so those first few moments are memorable. When setting up your content and your advertisement, you may also choose to include a call to action (CTA) here.
On the YouTube platform, you can even set up your content to have an in-video clickable call to action. This will happen during the first 15 seconds of your video.
These clickable CTAs look incredibly professional and streamlined. They don’t always stand out from your advert, though. To cover all of your bases, you’ll probably want to slide in a visible CTA at the beginning or the end of your video.
TrueView in-stream ads at the front of a video can be an affordable way to get some air time. It’s not the only way to use in-stream ads, though. You can also choose to have a non-skippable advertisement at the beginning of a video.
If you have videos that are longer than 10 minutes, you may opt to have your content spliced into the video. Your content and your budget may dictate which option is best for you and your business.
There are a lot of good reasons to go with the TrueView in-stream option. One of the most compelling reasons are the analytics that come along with them. Using Google AdWords alongside your video marketing campaign will give you crucial information about how your marketing plan is working.
AdWords provides you with great information about your retention rates—and where you’re losing your audience. If you see a pattern in the information, make sure to focus on the good instead of the bad. Leave what’s working in place while you make changes to what’s not.
For instance, if you’re losing audience members early on, make a few changes and reevaluate. Turning back to the analytics you have can help you continue to improve on your advertising campaign. It’s continual feedback that helps keep you on track.
For best results when making changes, always make one significant change at a time. This will help you identify exactly what’s working—and what’s not.
TrueView Video Discovery Ads
These advertisements were previously called “in-display” ads. Though not quite as prevalent as the in-stream ads, these are still commonly seen. These are the videos returned to you in search engine results. They can show up at the top of the page or along the sidebar, depending on where you’ve done your initial search.
You may be more interested in these “video discovery” ads if you’re working with longer videos. Shorter videos are a great option for in-stream ads, but there are length restrictions there. For longer chunks of content, you may want to turn to the video discovery ad option instead.
There are cons that go along with the pros, though. An in-stream advert can bring your content to those who aren’t looking for it. Video discovery ads are usually a good choice for those who are ready to sit for a longer video. These viewers are frequently already looking for something you are able to offer them.
If you don’t spend a significant amount of time studying YouTube advertisements, you may not be familiar with bumper ads. They aren’t as common as the other ad options we’ve discussed here. Though less common, these can be a great option for advertising when used properly.
When you do find them, you may have difficulty distinguishing them from shorter in-stream advertisements. Unlike in-stream content, though, bumper ads are designed to be truly short.
At only six seconds long, these bumper ads aren’t looking to make a sale or convince you of something. Instead, their purpose is simply to create exposure and reinforce previous adverts you’ve seen.
A bumper ad can be a great way to build rapport and encourage an ongoing relationship between your company and the viewer. It refreshes your viewer on an earlier message. Many bumper advertisements even work like a post-credit scene in a movie, tying directly into a previous full-length advertisement.
Putting Together an Effective Video Ad Campaign
Whichever option you find best currently suits your business goals, you’ll need a quality campaign to reap the benefits. Don’t let the process overwhelm you. With a few simple steps, you can be off to a great start.
Identify Your Video Ad Campaign Goals
It’s tempting to jump straight to the logistics of getting your campaign out there and visible. Before you get started, though, you need to get back to the very beginning by outlining your campaign goals. From there, you’ll be able to begin creating advertisements that best support those goals. This will set you up for success.
Create Your Content
Once you have your goals outlined, you want to put together a campaign that reflects them. The quality and structure of your content are paramount. It won’t matter how great your product or message is if you can’t convey it well to your potential consumer.
If there’s any doubt of your ability to do this piece well yourself, you may want to look to hire out. This is one time where you should expect to spend money to make money.
Don’t hesitate to increase your production budget even if it means diminishing your initial advertising budget. A high-quality product with fewer placements will bring in more business than a poor-quality piece with lots of ad slots.
Upload Your Content
If you don’t already have a YouTube account, you’ll need one to upload your videos. If you do have a personal account, but not a business account, you may want to consider creating a separate one. This will help maintain a professional look for your profile, which can give your business credibility.
Once your account is squared away, you’ll log on and go to your Creator Studio. You’ll find this option in the upper right-hand corner tab. Once in the Creator Studio, simply click on the upload icon. You’ll be prompted through the process and once the upload is complete, your video will be viewable.
Implement Your Campaign
The hardest part of your work is done. You have a plan sketched out, your content created, and now it’s uploaded and ready to become live. Now you only need to put together and roll out your video ad campaign.
Begin by logging into your Google AdWords account and selecting your Campaigns tab. Once in your campaigns, click on the blue plus sign and select the option for a new campaign. Once you have the new campaign up, you’ll be prompted to select your goals for the campaign.
You have already outlined your campaign goals, so this step shouldn’t be difficult. Once you’ve selected your style of campaign, you can move on to identifying your campaign settings.
Create Your Campaign Settings
Your campaign settings are all about when and how your advertisements will be displayed. Create a name for your campaign and fill out the fields.
In these fields, you’ll establish campaign goals and how much money you want to spend on your advertising. You’ll also put in campaign parameters, like how long you expect the campaign to run and when you want it to start.
To improve the effectiveness of your campaign, you’ll likely want to spend some time under the locations field. Here, you’ll be able to give strong parameters on who will be able to see your advertisements.
The use of the locations fields can help you spend your advertising money wisely. If your business or product is location-dependent, this step will be especially important for you. You want to spend your advertising budget bringing your content to those who are most likely to become customers.
Identify Your Ad Group
Putting in your campaign settings is just the beginning. When creating your ad group you get the opportunity to really identify your target audience. This section will connect your content with the audience you’re looking for. Don’t cut corners here, or you risk missing your prime audience altogether.
Begin by selecting a name for the ad group. You’ll also want to identify your maximum budget. After you have these two basics in place, you’ll need to get into the details of your ideal audience members.
In this section, you’ll be asked to determine who should be watching your video based on age, location, income, and other identifying markers. You will need to have a true understanding of who your audience is to complete this component successfully.
Hopefully, you have some data from previous customers to help guide you. You can also look to your Google Analytics for assistance. The information here can help you better understand who’s interested in your product—and who’s most likely to become a consumer.
Once you’re in Google Analytics, simply click on the audience tab. From there, look for demographics. Expand the tab and select “overview.”
Inside overview, you’ll want to hit the “all users” option and change to the “converters” option. This way, you’ll be able to see who your advertisement is working for. This will help solidify who you should be targeting with your campaign.
Input the parameters of your audience. If you do this piece properly, you’ll be using your advertising dollars more wisely, reaching the population who’s most likely to become a client.
Remember, these demographics are most likely true for you across the board. If you have other demographic settings (in Google AdWords, for instance) don’t forget to cross-check and update as needed.
Don’t become lulled into a false sense of security, here. Your demographic needs may change. The only way to keep tabs on how effective your parameters are is to check in often. Don’t be afraid to make adjustments if things change.
Under the “Audience” tab you’ll be able to make selections from three different categories. These areas are affinity, intent and life events, and remarketing. We’ll discuss the different areas briefly here, so you know what to expect from each.
The affinity information provided in this section is derived from previous online search behaviors. Depending on what kind of interests and searches Google users have made before, they’ll be placed into different categories. Since nearly 70 percent of internet searches are done through Google, this information can be quite thorough and informative.
Originally, these affinity categories were helpful, but also meant you were advertising to a large group of people. Think of these affinity categories as large umbrellas or an overlapping Venn diagram. Your target audience is in there, but not everyone included is part of that target audience.
Now, though, you can provide custom affinity categories. Instead of selecting your options from pre-established groupings created by Google, you can make your own. This helps make those umbrellas a little smaller—your ideal targeted audience will make up a greater portion of who sees your content.
Intent and Life Events
In this section, you’ll be able to target people who are behaving as though they’re getting ready to make a purchase. This means they’re searching in a way that suggests they’re doing more than casual browsing. Repeated searches, preliminary paperwork, and other indicators can all add up for this section.
Used properly, targeting this group can add up to greater sales at a lower price point. When used in collaboration with the other audience groups, you can really strengthen your targeting approach.
Remarketing is great for clinching that sale someone’s been waffling on. It can be the final push to close the deal.
You don’t want to underestimate the importance of a solid remarketing technique. Integrating a cookie or tagging system to your advertising approach can keep your product where it’s visible—and readily accessible for purchase.
Under this tab, you’ll be able to identify keywords or phrases you feel are relevant to your product and business. When people search those words your advertisement may be returned to them as a result.
Some of the keywords and phrases you use will be rooted in common sense and your product. However, using Google AdWords as a platform can provide you with some other options as well. Once your ad’s been up and running for a few weeks, you can open the Keywords tab and click on “Search Terms.”
Once in the tab, you can check out the conversions, clicks, and impressions to see what’s bringing people to your page. Add those terms to your keywords and check in after a few weeks to see how your campaign’s shaping up.
This area doesn’t rely on previous behaviors. Instead, the topics are grouped together based on the general group your item belongs to. It’s not exceptionally targeted and you’ll be competing with many others who fall in your same topic group.
This doesn’t mean the topic category can’t be beneficial to you and your business goals. It doesn’t, however, offer the same kind of customisation the other areas allow for.
This tab is all about where your advertisement has the potential to appear. Like with the topics section, placements aren’t about your potential searcher’s behavior.
Instead of focusing on behavior, you’ll identify particular channels you feel are relevant to a person who’s interested in your product. Fortunately, you have a good idea of your audience and their interests based on the earlier customer profile you’ve created.
You may find there’s some real trial and error to this piece of your targeting. If you’re wrong about the channels you’ve chosen, you won’t see the kind of results you were looking for. Keep close tabs on how your adverts are performing to determine if any changes are needed.
Rolling out Your New Ad Group
However you decide to complete the different segments of your Ad Group, once you’re finished, you’ll need to get it out there. Once you’ve set up your parameters, you can keep track of how it’s performing in your “weekly estimates” section.
As you input your parameters, you’ll find these numbers change to reflect the expected performance of your ad. This can give you a good idea about how many people you can expect your content to reach.
Using this tool, you can see how your initial financial investment may be returned to you. If you don’t like what you see, you can make changes to your approach as you see fit.
Now that you’re ready to launch the campaign, you can use Google AdWords to do the hard work for you. Enter the URL where your content will be located. You may also choose a URL that will be displayed in your search results (if they’re different from each other).
You’ll also be able to add an image that will appear to the searchers. You can elect to have Google AdWords choose the still for you, or you can create a customised option. For the best image result, you’ll need a 300 pixel by 60-pixel image for this part.
When all of your selections have been made and you’ve checked—and rechecked—your entries, you’re ready to go. Click the save and continue button. In a short time, your advertisement will be live—and you’ll be on your way to reaping the benefits that come with YouTube advertising.
Optimising Your YouTube Advertising Campaign
Congratulations. You’ve taken the first incredible step toward having a viable YouTube advertising campaign. You’ve done a lot of work already. From creating the advertisement to defining the audience, your campaign has been a labor of love.
As perfect as it is now, don’t fall into the temptation to consider it perfect forever. Part of getting the most out of your YouTube advertising campaign is revisiting what you’ve created on a regular basis.
Looking in on your campaign on a regular basis is more than checking in on it every couple of weeks. Unfortunately, the truth is that the vast majority of campaigns aren’t even looked in on that often.
Taking a good look at the performance of your campaign on a weekly basis can help you stay ahead of trends. It can help you anticipate what will perform well—and when it’s time to cycle something out.
How often you check in on the status of your campaign will be influenced by how much money you’re spending. If you’re spending several thousands of dollars on your advertising every month, you need to check in at least once a week.
To get the very most out of your account, though, you’ll want to look in on the campaign’s performance more often. Strive for three times a week for an established campaign. If your campaign is new, log in several times a day to make sure everything is on track.
No Time Like the Present
You’ve waited long enough. If you haven’t put a YouTube advertising campaign out there yet, there’s no better time to do it. Every minute you delay could be lost income.
Go ahead and take the plunge into video advertising on YouTube. With a real strategy and high-quality content, YouTube can take your business farther than you’ve ever imagined.