AdWords for Video: Create Great Ads, Channel Pages, and Campaigns

My last post introduced AdWords for Video: Google’s powerful video advertising platform. This post will discuss how to get started by building out your YouTube presence, and creating great campaigns to run on YouTube and the Google Display Network.


Developing Good Content


Undoubtedly, the first place to start is making great video ads! At minimum, you need to make sure your videos accomplish a number of important things:


  • Highlights your brand – Make sure your videos communicate your brand’s value and presents your business in an engaging and visually attractive way.
  • Is Brand-consistent – Just as with any advertising effort, make sure your video syncs up with your brand image in terms of both design and narrative
  • Is consistent with your advertising goals – There are a number of reasons why you may running videos ads. Make sure your ads actually encourage the user to take the right action for your goals. For example, a branding campaign will likely have different content than a direct response campaign.
  • Isn’t too short (In-stream) – You’re charged after thirty seconds, or when the video ends. If you’re video is too short, say, ten seconds long, you run the risk of getting charged for views that didn’t necessarily suggest a high degree of user engagement. Rather, the user just didn’t get around to skipping before the video ended.



Building Out Your Channel Page


If you’re going to run video ads that point to a channel page, you want to take the development of that page very seriously. Think of it as an extension of your online profile (because it is) and strategize creative ways to make it complement your website; for example, as a resource or content marketing page.


Some things to consider when building your Channel Page:


  • Make it visually appealing – Don’t think of this page as merely a place to dump all of your video collateral. Take page elements seriously — images, video curation, etc.
  • Provide useful information in “About” section – This is an opportunity to further hone your brand’s image to new and existing users. Take advantage of it!
  • Monitor the “Discussion” tab for more insight into your users – YouTube is a social platform in that users can post comments and engage in conversions. This forum is a potential goldmine of insight into how you can improve.


Linking AdWords and YouTube Accounts


To get the full functionality of AdWords for Video, you’ll need to link your AdWords account to your YouTube account. This will make it possible to take advantage of the following features:


(From Google):

  • View counts and call to action — Access your video view statistics as well as add call-to-action overlays to your video.
  • Remarket — Show ads to people who visit and interact with your channel.
  • Engagement – Measure the impact of video ads by tracking visitor behavior on your channel.


Building Out Your Campaigns

Many AdWords best practices apply here. Generally speaking, it’s best to attempt a granular buildout based on the targeting options and networks.


Top 5 Tactics for Building Great Campaigns:


  1. Separate YouTube serving from Display Network serving — It’s possible that users may behave differently on these two networks and it’s good to have individual control of each, for optimization and budgeting purposes.
  2. Break out targeting methods into separate campaigns – As with GDN best practices, create separate campaigns for significantly different targeting methods — interests vs. remarketing, for example.
  3. Add Call-to-Action Overlay ads – These are small ads that appear along with your video ads and link to your website — great for brand drivers and calls-to-action!
  4. Combine targeting methods for tighter targeting — Using combinations of targeting methods will ensure more targeted serving.
  5. Create multiple ad messaging variations – TrueView In-Display ads will show messaging along with a thumbnail of your video. Create multiple versions of your ad with different messaging and test against each other.