Isn’t that where you go to watch music videos, that super chill orange cat, and what you rely on to be a secret babysitter so you can get work done? (it’s a lifesaver some days, no judgement here!)
It is all those things.
But it’s also the largest video platform in the world.
That’s why 2 billion logged-in users watch YouTube every single month. The number is much higher if we take into account watchers who don’t sign into the platform.
It’s no wonder YouTube is the largest video platform in the world. Yet, surprisingly, one of the most underutilized platforms for marketing.
As it turns out, Facebook usage is speculated to decrease in the future due to competing platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat, and TikTok. With that monopoly giving way to so many different apps offering tons of flashy, fast-moving, habit-forming content; now’s the best time to hop on to harnessing the power of YouTube ads.
You might be thinking, “Casey, that’s all very well and good. But how on earth am I supposed to stand out from the crowd?!”
I’m glad you asked! Here’s what you need to know:
Researchers Deghani et. al. (2016), identified four dimensions which you need to be aware of when creating your YouTube advertisement. These were: Entertainment, informativeness, customization, and irritation.
Firat (2019), added on a fifth dimension of Trendiness.
These are pretty self-explanatory.
If you want your YouTube ad to be watched a little longer than that 5 seconds it takes to tap “skip,” then it’s a good idea to make sure your ad is entertaining, informative, customized to your audience, and linked to the current “in thing”. These elements are found to increase your YouTube ad’s value in your viewers’ eyes. In fact, researchers Voorveld et. al. (2017), discovered that entertainment is more important on YouTube than any other social media platform.
This is because YoutTube is primarily used as a “pastime” and “time-filling” tool.
If you’re a BMX biker, a dancer, or a parkour-er; you’ll want to see other talented people in your field strut their stuff. If you have 20 minutes on the train, 10 minutes waiting for your pasta to cook, or 5 minutes pretending to be on the toilet to escape from the kids – it’s too easy to check out a make-up tutorial, headphone product review, or someone’s spectacular shoe haul unboxing.
You see, a well-targeted YouTube ad is similar to a well-targeted YouTube video in the sense that it should make your users happy, keep them relaxed, and it must be highly linked with the topics they’re there to see more of.
Here’s the other side of the entertainment coin. YouTube ads were also evaluated most negatively by viewers when it didn’t hit these targets spot on. What you don’t want your ad to be, is the opposite of the elements I mentioned above. Else, it’ll never get watched. Irritation and annoyance are some things you can’t afford to become associated with your brand, goods, or services! In other words, to not waste your advertising dollars, you need to know what you’re doing. Sounds obvious? You’ll be surprised how often this is overlooked!
Here’s how in-depth it can get. Rodriguez (2017), pinned down certain cues that are necessary for advertisers to capitalize on. While Firat (2019), broke down the viewing preferences of Youtube ads based on gender and age.
They found that one ad doesn’t actually cover all. Instead, the most crucial cues or signals, which affect the engagement and relatability of your ads are many. Amongst these are the viewers’ education, the ad’s music, how the people in the ad look, their body movements, and the way they talk.
For example, if your viewers are mostly wage earners, did you know that they rank music as the most important part of your YouTube ad almost 70% of the time?
If they have at least a bachelor’s degree, they’ll find your ad scenery and what you’re saying in the video, to be more important than anything else.
Did you realize that men get more irritated than women, and more quickly when viewing YouTube ads?
Is your audience the over-40s? Then, you’ll want to ramp up the informational value since they enjoy informative ads much more than their younger counterparts under the age of 30.
Selling to millennials within the 30-39 age range? It would be helpful for you to know that this group was the most critical of all. They value entertainment and trendiness more than even the Zoomers! Who knew! Well, now you do.
Let’s not forget Google crunches YouTube data too. Here’s what they say about making it a point to target your audience’s intent to buy. First of all, their ability to recall your ad goes up by 32%. Secondly, their purchase intent goes up by 100%. A smart ad literally doubles people’s intention to buy from you! How can you let that fall through your fingers?
When you put all the data on this page you’re reading together, let me tell you there’s some beautiful stuff that happens!
I’ve said this before, and it bears saying again: When people have the intent to buy, they’re actively looking for you! Your job is to show them what you have in a non-boring, informative way. Use your YouTube ads to answer their questions before they ask ‘em. Teach them how it’ll improve their lives. Give them that value they can’t find anywhere else.
Then, my friend, you have a very powerful tool at your hands to drive business to your door.
The reason I’m writing this, is because I believe it’s abundantly clear that the more we understand how YouTube ads work and how people experience them, the less we’re prone to misinterpreting what people want. That means the further our YouTube advertising dollars go. And consequently, the more brand awareness we generate for ourselves. That boils down to lots more customers we can bring to the top of our business funnels.
Your YouTube ads don’t necessarily even have to be high tech or big budget. If there’s one thing the existing research is very clear on, it’s that content isn’t king in this case. Context is.
Today, if you take what I’ve said here and use it – I’m happy. My research and writing has helped someone better their business and improve their life.
If you’d rather spend your time actually running your business and want to leave the YouTube Ads in expert hands – then I’m glad you’re still reading!
It just so happens that I help small businesses create high-converting YouTube Ads that get results! If your business would benefit from it, I use YouTube Ads as part of an integrative strategy that drives sales, leads and engagement right to your product or service.
Want to discuss the details on how it’ll work for your specific business?
There are so many ways to boost business, grow revenue, and become more profitable that I simply can’t cover them all here.