YouTube Ad Formats 2020 - The Complete Guide 📖

YouTube Ad Formats 2020 - The Complete Guide 📖
Photo by Alexander Shatov / Unsplash

As a marketer as soon as you decided to advertise on YouTube, the next question is “What all YouTube Ad Formats available in 2020? and “Which is the best ad format for me?”

In this post, I’ll explain the different YouTube ad format options, take you through how to set up a video ad campaign, what is the best ad format and the best practices from proven performers.

Types of YouTube Ad Formats – 2020:

To start, let’s take a look at the main types of ad formats on YouTube, both video and otherwise:

  • Bumper Ads
  • TrueView for Reach
  • Non-Skip 15/20s*
  • YouTube Masthead
  • TrueView Discovery
  • TrueView In-Stream
  • TrueView for Action
  • App Campaigns for Video (beta)

Bumper ads

Bumper ads are non-skippable in-stream ads bought on CPM that drive additional Reach, frequency and brand awareness. Make an impact in a mobile-first world.

Remember this abbreviation – SINSIX (Say In Six Seconds)

Bumper Ads

How to put Bumper ads to work?

  • Tease an announcement with Bumper ads, then tell the full story, priming and exciting your audience.
  • Amplify your impact by adding Bumpers to your TrueView or Google Preferred campaign.
  • Remarket with a Bumper that echos your core call to action.
  • Remain top of mind with a continuous brand presence, taking advantage of the cost efficiencies and reach of this format.

Advantages of Bumper Ads: 

Brand Impact: Drive incremental lift in brand metrics when coupled with TrueView or Google Preferred.

Massive Reach: efficient CPM and high frequency on YouTube and Google Video Partners – means significant Reach for your budget.

Mobile Optimized: Ensure the full message is delivered despite short attention spans and lower ad tolerance on mobile.

TrueView for Reach

TrueView for Reach optimizes for highly efficient Reach and is bought on CPM, using a skippable in-stream format.

Most significant impression-based Reach for a skippable ad, at highly efficient CPMs.

How to put TrueView for reach work?

  • Ideal for clients with upper-funnel campaigns that want an effective reach solution at lower CPMs.
  • TrueView for Reach is optimized to work with short ad lengths (i.e., 15s/20s), though any ad length is accepted.

Advantages of Trueview for Reach:

  • Highly efficient Reach: Optimized to capture the greatest Reach for a skippable ad at the lowest CPMs.
  • Simple CPM buying: Easily manage your campaign with Industry-standard CPM bidding and billing.
  • Drive results with attentive Reach: Capture attention with YouTube’s industry-leading viewability and audibility.

Non-Skip 15/20s*

Non-Skippable in-stream ads (“non-skips”) are a non-skippable, forced-view video ad format used primarily to drive awareness or consideration marketing objectives.

Combine the familiar format of the TV with the best of digital – including simple CPM buying and audiences.

Non-Skippable in-stream ads

How to put Non-Skip 15/20’s work?

  • Purchase on YouTube and GVP through Instant Reserve or the Auction in both Google Ads and DV360.
  • Repurpose TV creatives for digital use on YouTube to get your entire message across to viewers.

Advantages of Non-Skip 15/20s:

  • Familiar Format: Industry-standard 15s (or less) non-skippable video ad. Capture attention with YouTube’s industry-leading viewability and audibility.
  • Flexible Buying: ability to buy via auction with CPM bidding or Instant Reserve for guaranteed pricing and delivery.

YouTube Masthead

The YouTube Masthead enables advertisers to showcase their brands on a beautiful video canvas at scale across all devices at the top slot of the home feed.

YouTube Masthead

How to put YouTube Masthead to work?

  • Easy to launch in two days: Enter the YouTube URL of the video you want to use into the Video Masthead Preview Tool to see what your Video Masthead would look like on desktop, mobile, and tablet.
  • Reserve the Masthead for your brand’s most important days and launch an always-on strategy with TrueView discovery to drive video views and app downloads.

Advantages of YouTube Masthead

  • Showcase your brand at the gateway of the number one video site in the world on the days that matter most to your brand.
  • Be the first ad viewers as users start their YouTube journey on home: Either on desktop, mobile, or tablet, the first ad YouTube visitors will see is your brand.
  • The power of Native video: The Video Masthead makes the most out of your beautiful videos and drives view in a seamless YouTube experience.

TrueView Discovery

TrueView discovery ads enable advertisers to capture their audiences at key moments of content selection and only pay when users choose to watch an ad as user-initiated content.

Be present when users are discovering new content on the YouTube home feed, watch page, and search results.

TrueView Discovery

How to put TrueView discovery to work?

  • Watch page: Be at the top of related videos while users are considering what to watch next.
  • Home feed: Be present on the mobile home feed when users enter YouTube and are browsing for content.
  • Search: Capture intent by owning your space against queries for your brand and category.

Advantages of TrueView Discovery

  • Expand Reach: Be present beyond Watch page pre-roll in key discovery placements across YouTube (search page, home feed, watch page).
  • Capture intent: Deliver information to users actively searching for your brand or category and consuming relevant content.
  • Drive action: Viewers are more likely to subscribe, share, and watch additional videos from your brand (on average, one video within 24 hours).

TrueView in-stream

TrueView in-stream ads are skippable ads bought on a cost per view (CPV). Since users are given the option to skip the ad, a view increments the YouTube view count.

Pay only when a consumer chooses to watch or interact with your ad. Reach viewers across YouTube and the Google Display Network.

How to put TrueView in-stream to work?

Use the ABCD for building effective creative for YouTube.

  • Attract: No matter the format, and it’s crucial to capture attention early on.
  • Brand: Integrate your brand naturally
  • Connect: Connect with the viewer with storytelling and emotion
  • Direct: Direct the view on what to do next
  • Flip the script: Consider changing up the traditional story arc for a more active, engaged viewer.

Advantages of TrueView in-stream?

Optimized to drive views by identifying target consumers most likely to watch your ad

Choose what you want to pay for a view, so you get the right audience at the right price.

The freedom to experiment with ad lengths so you can take your time to tell your brand’s story

TrueView for Action

TrueView for action ads are skippable in-stream ads that use Smart Bidding and format enhancements to drive website conversions.

How to put this TrueView for Action work? 

  • Conversion Tracking: Use Google Ads conversion tracking to optimize for a “light” conversion event (e.g., ‘add to cart’ or ‘checkout’)
  • Maximize Conversions: Capture the most conversions in your daily budget (which should be 20x displayed CPA, 30x search CPA or 10x expected video CPA) and reach CPA efficiency before switching to target CPA bidding.
  • Audiences: Start with custom intent & remarketing audiences to reach consumers who recently searched for your brand or product, or visited your website
    Creative: Test multiple action-oriented creatives (at least 5 if possible)

Advantages of TrueView for Action: 

Capture attention. Smart bidding for conversions automatically prioritizes users with most vital intent signals to see your video ad.

Convert intent. The format offers customizable & consistent call to action button across devices.

Drive conversions. Start with Maximize conversions bidding to drive conversions within budget; graduate to Target CPA to optimize for efficient CPA

App Campaigns for Video (beta)

Leverage the power of machine learning to promote your app across our video only properties.

Drive app installs and engagement on video-only properties (Admob and Youtube).

How to put this App Campaigns for Video work?

  • Recommended audiences: app install advertisers who are looking to increase video reach and engagement.
  • Test different video formats (:15 and:30 seconds), as well as our auto-generated videos and let the machine determine which drives the best performance.
  • Ensure you set a bid that is at least 20% higher than regular UAC to maximize video inventory.

Advantages of App Campaigns for Video

  • Automatically serve on our largest in-app video networks in one campaign.
  • Machine Learning auto-optimizes your targeting, bidding, and creative to drive the highest number of installs or in-app actions at your target CPI/A.
  • Inline installs reduce friction for the user and allow them to install the app without ever leaving Youtube.
  • Don’t have a video? No problem. Leverage our automatic video creation tool to seamlessly create a video for your campaign.

Read more about Youtube home feed ads and how it helps?

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