Now more than ever, we live in a world dominated by visuals. The signs are everywhere: the proliferation of social media, the rise of curated content such as infographics, a general decline in the amount consumers are willing to read, and the popularity of platforms like YouTube (where people watch over a billion hours of video every day).
Strong visual content, particularly video ads, has been proven to increase brand awareness and boost conversion rates — so why do many companies, particularly small- and medium-sized businesses, still resist it? In this quick guide, we’ll explain how video (and especially YouTube) can help you attract more customers and grow your business, and we’ll outline a few tips to help you do just that. Keep reading to learn more!
For a robust digital marketing strategy, look to video ads
Once upon a time, the realm of video advertising was the purview of big brands — the ones with the deep pockets and extensive resources to put together flashy and expensive campaigns. But with the advent of wide-reaching channels such as Youtube, that’s not the case anymore.
Unlike TVCs (television video commercials), YouTube advertising is affordable, measurable, and targeted, allowing you to hone in on your key demographic and reach them at every point in the buying journey.
But why exactly is video such an effective digital marketing tool, and why should you invest in it?
Video ads have what’s referred to as a ‘halo effect’ — meaning that, although a customer might not make a purchase immediately upon seeing your ad, the impression of the ad lingers and frequently leads to purchases down the line.
Video is also a key piece of the purchase-journey puzzle, with 80% of consumers switching between browser searches and videos when they’re researching a buy. Think about the videos that line the top of the page when you Google a product or product category — and now consider the opportunities you’re forgoing there if video advertising isn’t a part of your strategy.
Next, let’s talk conversion rates and customer acquisition costs. According to Google Data, businesses that run YouTube ads as well as Google Search ads enjoy 3% higher conversion rates and a 4% lower search cost per acquisition than those who stick solely to Search ads.
If you think about it in terms of sheer opportunity, video marketing offers an exponentially vaster space in which to grow your business. We’re talking billions more opportunities, particularly when it comes to YouTube. Here’s what we mean.
Digital marketing and YouTube ads
Need more convincing on why video ads are a good investment? A quick look at YouTube’s statistics should do the trick.
The video platform clocks in at two billion logged-in users each month (more than a third of the internet) who watch over one billion hours of video each day. According to a 2018 video marketing survey conducted by Brightcove, more than 50% of customers actively engage with a brand after viewing a video ad — and according to the Pew Research Centre, YouTube is used by nearly three-quarters of adults and a whopping 94% of 18- to 24-year-olds.
YouTube also has the unique distinction of being used with ‘search intent,’ meaning consumers navigate the platform by specifically searching for what they want. Advertisers can then take advantage of this using YouTube’s Custom Intent Audiences feature, which allows them to reach viewers who’ve performed specific searches.
4 tips to make your video ads stand out
It’s no secret that audience attention spans these days are dwindling and that people have little patience for ads. YouTube allows users to skip an ad after five seconds (unless the marketer has paid for a non-skippable ad) — so when it comes to making your own particular video, aim to hook a viewer in the first five seconds and to keep the entire ad between 10 and 12 seconds long. It’s likely that viewers will hit ‘skip’ after five seconds anyway, but if you can make that time compelling, it’s also likely that the halo effect will linger longer and lead to a conversion.
Your ads should be punchy, creative, and true to your brand. Though viewers are more likely to have the sound on when they’re watching a YouTube video than, say, a Facebook video, it’s better not to rely on audio to convey your message. Instead, use a mix of arresting visuals and on-screen text to tell your story.
And speaking of story? Always ensure you’re talking directly to your target audience. There’s no use spending time and money to create and run a video ad if the message doesn’t resonate with the people you’re trying to reach.
Lastly: make an emotional connection. Audiences are far more likely to remember and respond to an ad that made them laugh or cry — so do your utmost to deliver maximum emotional impact.
Want to boost your digital marketing? Book a strategy session with Harper!
At Harper, we build your marketing strategy around your unique business needs. We start by pinpointing and assessing your goals and the message you want to convey, and then we determine the best and most cost-effective ways for you to reach your target audience.
Whether it’s through remarketing (targeting engaged consumers who’ve already visited your page) or awareness-based campaigns to get new products in front of your key demographics, we’re committed to building a custom digital marketing strategy that’s tailored just for you.
Want to learn how video can help you meet and exceed your business goals? Head here to book a free strategy session with us!