What's this?
This content has been created by a contributor of the Ad Age Collective, an invitation-only, fee-based membership organization of leaders shaping media and marketing. Learn more about this program.

3 methods for creating a YouTube ad that converts

By Published on .

Credit: Pexels

I believe business owners should have two goals: to please their customers and to sustain a healthy amount of sales. Pleasing your customers should be easy enough, so long as you create a high-quality product or service that solves a problem, and educate the consumer on what they can expect out of your product or service before they go to make a purchase.

It's the second goal -- the driving sales part -- that causes many CEOs, small business owners and marketers to stumble and lose their footing. How exactly do you go from a few sales per week to tens of thousands of sales? The answer is nuanced, but in short, you need to have a killer marketing plan. In my experience, one of the best places to do your marketing is on YouTube, which the company states is the second-largest search engine behind Google. If you're doing content marketing on your website, it may be time to turn to YouTube to boost sales and start a video ad campaign to create ads that convert. Here's how you can take advantage of advertising on this platform:

Use both in-stream and discovery ads.

There's no doubt that you've opened YouTube and started watching a video, only to get interrupted with an ad. That seems like the only logical way to post your ads on the platform, but is it?

You may be surprised to learn there are two different types of ads you can post when using YouTube: The first one I mentioned, which occurs during videos, is called an "in-stream" ad. These come in various formats including skippable, non-skippable, overlay, bumper ads and sponsored cards.

Discovery ads are the other type of promotional material you can add to YouTube. When you look on the left side of the screen in the "related" videos section, you'll likely see a few that say "sponsored video." These are discovery ads.

You're probably going to want to use both types of ads if you want to get more conversions. Based on our A/B testing, certain audiences are more likely to respond to the in-stream ads, while others may be intrigued by your discovery ad offerings.

Create a sense of urgency with a call to action.

You can create a thousand ad campaigns, but if you don't have a clear call to action, you're likely leaving sales on the table.

As an example of how a call to action on YouTube can promote sales, let's look at a case study by Google for the company Yoox Net-a-Porter. The fashion company created ads for YouTube that advertised products that were only available for purchase through affiliated YouTube ads. The brand used five video ad templates based on 400 exclusive fashion products and showed the products on the brink of destruction, suggesting that the customers should purchase the item before it was "destroyed."

The results were staggering: Each of the products had an average click-through rate of 37 percent. Less than half may not sound like much until you consider that this is 23 percent more than the industry average, according to the study. When you're creating your call to action, consider using techniques such as offering limited time discounts, promoting new or exclusive products or offering something for free in exchange for a conversion (even if the free thing you're offering is just information).

Target your audience.

If you already have an established e-commerce store, chances are you know who your target demographic is. As you start to create ads on YouTube, you can use this knowledge to help put your ads in front of the right eyes.

Look for the "demographics" section when setting up the ad and be sure to check off the correct fields for information such as gender, age and location. You can then go to the "interests" section and start typing in keywords related to your niche. The interests you pick will help make sure your ad appears on videos that are relevant. You could also take this further by adding retargeting pixels to your ads with the same menu for even more chances to pull in potential customers who discover your videos.

There's no doubt that video content is becoming one of the most popular ways to draw traffic to your business, and YouTube is the perfect outlet to advertise to an audience of over 1.8 billion users every month. Every business model is different, so you'll have to learn how these tips blend with your niche. As you get to know your audience, start thinking about different ways you can use A/B testing to reach out to your most popular demographics. Finally, deliver quality ads that have a clear, urgent call to action. If all goes well, you'll be on the path to a thriving business with more conversions than ever before.

Most Popular
About Ad Age Collective
Ad Age Collective is an invitation-only, fee-based membership organization of industry leaders with influential voices. The Ad Age editorial team is not involved in the curation or management of the Ad Age Collective and the content within. The opinion expressed by contributors are their own. Learn more.
In this article: