Video Advertising with YouTube

If you use Google AdWords to drive conversion, you’re paying a lot more these days due to increased competition for keywords. Many marketers have not yet discovered Google AdWords for video. This presents big opportunity because there is less competition and the keyword cost is still fairly low (less than 10 cents per click in lots of areas). The channel is not as accessible as traditional PPC because you'll need to produce a video ad and that carries a cost. Video advertising is a big deal. Adwords for video has allowed companies to put their brand in front of targeted users for a fraction of the cost of what televison costs. AdWords for Video is easy to set up, easy to measure, and a snap to refine. Targeting is generally based on age, gender and interests, but can even be refined to a local one mile radius. In-stream ads play at the beginning, mid-point or end of the YouTube partner’s video. To use Adwords for video you'll need to produce a video ad (e.g. like a television commercial, but, different).

There are a few different flavors of YouTube InStream Advertising. Some require you to watch a full 30 second ad while others allow viewers to skip the ad after five seconds. In less than five seconds the video ad need to convince your audience to continue watching. Next, the message needs to be relevant enough to convert your audience to click-through. The caveat, which is in the advertisers favor, is that advertisers don’t pay for skipped ads. Advertisers only need to pay when someone watches the full advertisement or clicks on the link. This means that thousands of impressions can be made to viewers who are not ready to convert, and you’ll only have to pay for those who are further down the conversion funnel.

The most successful AdWords video campaigns are not television spots that ended up in YouTube. They are video ads that have been carefully created to fit within the realm of YouTube and take full advantage of the features that television cannot provide (annotations, analytics triggers, and links). At Dirigo, our Google certified AdWords staff and video production team are on the same page, in the same office and synergize to bring relevant advertising to people who are most likely to become converted leads.

Building a Video Campaign

Our process begins with defining our clients’ goals. Do they want to generate more sales? Create more brand awareness? Do they want to start a conversation with their customers? We make sure we get this part right and in plain English—it’s the foundation of the entire campaign. Both parties (client and agency) need to have a clear understanding of what we are working towards.

Once we have a clear target we begin concepting. This is the part where ideas get tossed back and forth, changed, molded and eventually becomes a script. Everyone gets to have fun and dream big here, logistics is a ways off yet. The most important part of the concepting process is that every decision we make here aligns with the goals.

At Dirigo we see budgets as enabling, not restricting. In the world of commercial/corporate video production budget must be discussed, de-mystified and aligned. If you're spending less than $5,000/month in traditional PPC, the YouTube video market is not for you. It is pretty easy to spend several thousand dollars producing a video ad. It is eaqually as easy to spend five times that to hit a home run. That's why the channel is chaulk full of national brands and large regional brands. That said, there is plenty of room for small business in this channel (e.g. brands spending > $100K per year on advertising). Once buget, goal. and concept is wraped-up we move to pre-production.

Planning and more planning, pre-production is the phase where production gets organized. We audition actors, write scripts, secure locations and hire the appropriate production specialists. Once all assets are allocated we re-align with the budget, cut any fat we don’t need and schedule production (e.g. lights, camera, action).

During production we use professional lights, cameras, stabilizers, cranes—whatever is required to bring the vision to life. Our team takes the upmost care during this phase. We are life-long video professionals that use the same techniques and practices that are deployed in feature-length films and national television commercials. Once filming ends the footage is brought to the edit suite for cutting, visual effects, audio mastering and web optimization.

Running a Video Campaign

A singularly focused video production company would hand you the finished product and be on their way, but, Dirigo is different. Production is only half the battle. The video needs an audience to be effective. That’s when our video marketing experts take over.

We target the demographic and only air ads to the most qualified traffic. Our Google Certified AdWords staff use Google Analytics to understand the interests and habits of the audience and to analyze the effectiveness of our client’s campaigns. We monitor how long people watch the ads, how often they click the “skip ad” button, and the CTR. Because we are under one roof we can make calculated adjustments, even video edits, to fine tune an advertisements quickly and collaboratively.

Ads are shown in search results when specific keywords are searched and are not played until someone selects the video. You get charged once the user clicks to play. The best-performing video ads are those that provide tangible value to the viewer. Shorter is better, and story is parmount. We set a daily budget, if it gets used up the ads just stop showing until the next day. AdWords for video works on a bidding system. We constantly monitor the “bidding market” for your campaign. Through on-going optimization we make sure your campaign is running at maximum efficiency and yields tangible ROI.

Online video viewership already surpasses television's. Audiences are consuming video on connected screens, the same platforms where conversions are made. As a digital agency, Dirigo is uniquely qualified to produce and air online video campaigns to their fullest potential. If you're ready to try YouTube advertising, we're the folks to produce and manage your campaign. Give us a jingle and let's talk video production and advertising.

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