YouTube plays many roles in any consumer’s life, whether it’s to catch up on last night’s episode of Jimmy Fallon, find out the latest news, or lose hours to the wide world of cute animals caught on video. Recent estimates state that around an hour of YouTube content is uploaded by creators every second, resulting in over 3 billion hours of video watched per month.

YouTube advertising

This is a prime space for advertising and has been growing in popularity as the ideal space to reach audiences of all ages with highly engaging video content and shareable media. But it also presents a unique set of challenges from the standpoint of an advertiser just starting out on the platform. The following are some tips for getting started and setting a campaign up for success on YouTube.

Know Your Audience

Google has made it pretty straight-forward to create a video ad and place it on YouTube. Among the key points to identify before beginning a YouTube campaign, though, are who your ideal audiences are, and how you can best reach them within the abilities Google offers.

Advertisers using YouTube on the GDN are afforded the same targeting levers as typical display, but the “spray and pray” approach is far more predictable when you begin to target individual channels – and even individual videos for pre-roll advertising. Other, more common GDN placements, such as Customer Match, interest categories, and demographics, are available as well.

Know Your Goals

Many advertisers have different ideas about what they aim to accomplish by running YouTube ads, and this will greatly influence the way they might go about it. For example, are you aiming for product-sale conversions, are you trying to generate momentum for a product launch, or are you just aiming to build brand awareness?

Answering these questions, as well as identifying your top KPIs, will help to inform the type of YouTube ads that best fit your goals, the cost you can expect to take on with this channel, and the results you can realistically hope to generate.

Leverage Other Channels

Data translates well between channels when it comes to building audiences. Advertisers can now gather the habits of their best performing audiences from their social platforms, remarketing audiences, and email marketing campaigns and use them to reach the most relevant shoppers at the right times.

With the help of multiple data sources, building audiences and lookalike audiences can help an advertiser find actionable data quickly with less wasted spend.

Create Shareable Media

One of the greatest traits of YouTube media is its social component. A pre-roll ad can grab a viewer’s attention and make them laugh, make them take notice, or make them want to buy something great. The next step in that interaction is often for the viewer to pass the video along to someone who might enjoy it, too, or even to post it to their social media for innumerable users to enjoy.

This is where experience and leveraging your Google team can come in handy. We can’t expect to know all there is to know about what makes for engaging content, but understanding your target audiences and what they seek out and enjoy is a great first step, and knowing where to go for answers can help fill other necessary gaps.

Learn Quickly

Finally, insights on YouTube videos tend to present quickly. Depending on your budget, you’ll likely find out quickly whether your content is too long or short, whether you’re advertising on the right channels, and whether you’re incentivizing the conversions you want.

YouTube has grown by leaps and bounds in recent years, and it shows no sign of slowing down. As an advertising marketplace, it’s a buyer’s market. From a consumer standpoint, it’s an agreeable platform where viewers typically don’t mind engaging content accompanying their experience. Equipped with the right tools and methodology, any advertiser can expect success in the YouTube space.

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Kevyn Condatore
Kackie is a native Floridian who got to Austin, Texas as fast as she could after graduating from Florida State University with a degree in Fine Arts. Her experience spans from grassroots marketing, the beauty industry, and content management, all the way up to Paid Search and client relations. When she's not poring over spreadsheets, she enjoys vlogging on YouTube, running in the Texas heat, and hiking with her hound dog, Ollie.