Social Media Video Ads Part 2: Tips for Better Video Ads

Maximize Your Social Video Advertising Campaigns

TV commercials have been driving consumers toward brands for more than 50 years. Now, online video advertising is making it even easier and more cost effective to get the same or better results. According to Nielsen, consumers who watch online video ads exhibit almost twice the brand recall and the message recall. If you’re trying to reach that all-important 18-34 age bracket, those people are spending more time watching videos online than watching TV.

As an added benefit, video ads are always available. The print ad you placed in a magazine will be gone by the end of the month, but a year from now, consumers will still be watching your branded content on YouTube. And if your content is popular, you’ll get a boost from the search engines, too.
There’s no question, video advertising works – if you do it right.

What is Video Advertising?

Before we go any further, we should define video advertising. In the most traditional sense, video advertising comes in three forms, In-Stream, In-Banner and In-Text. The banner and text versions are display ads that have a video component when a user clicks or mouses over the trigger. In-Stream ads are the ones that appear on a video you’re watching YouTube or other streaming site. For short videos, they’re usually pre-roll and sometimes come with a skip option to cut down on viewer frustration and to save the advertiser money. (If the viewer doesn’t watch the entire ad, the advertiser doesn’t get charged for that view.) Longer videos might also contain mid-roll and post-roll video ads. YouTube also sells In-search ads which appear at the top of the search results page and In-display ad which appear in the sidebar of a relevant video. All of those options require you to pay to place your ad through a network such as Adwords or Brightroll. But there’s another, more inexpensive way to reach out to your customers and that’s with your own, branded YouTube channel. Using YouTube’s free hosting, you can upload product tutorials, company overviews, tips & tricks videos related to your service or any other type of helpful content. A branded YouTube channel is the most cost effective way to spread your video message but free doesn’t mean easy.

The Viral Reward

It’s the ultimate reward, whether you’re a wannabe pop star or the owner of a fleet of taco trucks, is a video that goes viral. These entertaining gems go from ten views to 10,000 in 48 hours thanks to the immediacy of social media. These videos usually have a tight hook that’s either quirky or touches an emotional nerve. Audi hit on both counts with their recent video featuring the two actors who have played Spock – Zachary Quinto and Leonard Nimoy. After only three months, this video ad has 7,012,654 views. Can’t afford a celebrity spokesperson? Try animals. UK Telecom company Three brought in 7,205,474 views with a moonwalking pony. Funny can work, but it’s harder than it looks. Dove went the other way, tugging at our heartstrings with their Real Beauty Sketches campaign. The tag, “you’re more beautiful than you think” was both touching and uplifting and the video picked up more than 27 million hits in ten days. The downside to viral is that it just happens, you can’t make it so. But there are a few things you can do to increase your chances.

Top Tips for Better Video Ads

  1. Make it personal   People are more likely to share a video they can relate to. Show customers or employees using your product or acting out a situation that your company can solve. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. People want to buy from people – so help them get to know you.
  2. Keep it short and sharp   Video viewers have a short attention span. Don’t try to include everything in one video. Create a series, each one dedicated to a different feature or benefit. 15 to 30 seconds is all you’ll have for an in-stream ad. If you’re creating branded content, you can go up to several minutes but it needs to be focused and compelling from beginning to end.
  3. Pay attention to production details   You don’t have to hire a Hollywood director to create your video but you do need to be as professional as possible. Good lighting will make a world of difference. Check audio levels and speak slowly and clearly. Be aware of what’s happening in the background (eliminate clutter), be conscious of what you’re wearing and watch out for unflattering or inappropriate camera angles.   Before posting, have someone who hasn’t seen the video watch it for mistakes and double check the spelling of any text on screen.
  4. Open with a striking image and close with a surprise   To keep viewers from pressing the skip button, always open with a striking image – beautiful, funny, intriguing – something that will catch the eye as soon as the video starts to roll. Then tell a story with a beginning, a middle and an end. The best videos build to a surprise so as soon as the video is over, the viewer feels compelled to click a social sharing button. That’s a lot to ask in 30 seconds, but try.
  5. End with a call to action  It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of a video but don’t forget that the whole purpose is to drive traffic and sales. Make sure you include a call to action which usually means a URL for more information. If you’re uploading your video to your channel, include a hyperlinked URL in the description box.

The idea of making a video advertisement for your business can be both exciting and terrifying. Just don’t let the nerves stop you from creating what could be next month’s biggest viral video. Are you thinking about creating a video ad for social media?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Need leads? Let’s Roll.