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For some time, online marketers typically thought of YouTube as an “awareness driver”: meaning in their minds, the platform is more effective at helping customers learn about products and services than actually closing a sale. Nevertheless, this implies it’s still an important cog in the purchase process.

Subsequent Google data suggested YouTube is perhaps not only helpful with respect to awareness but can also help boost purchase intent, which we’ll explore further in this post.

YouTube’s TrueView Does Drive Purchasing Behavior

Do you know what TrueView is? It gives video viewers the option to skip an advertisement after 5 seconds. It also offers four different kinds of ads:

  1. In-stream, allowing viewers to skip a video after 5 seconds (you only pay for ads viewed for at least 30 seconds).
  2. In-slate ads present several ads or a commercial break option in videos at least 10 minutes long.
  3. In-search ads display in YouTube search results as searchers use various keywords (you pay for all ads viewers begin watching).
  4. In-display ads appear in the YouTube promoted video overlay (you only pay when viewers choose to watch an ad).

According to Google, these “TrueView” ads—which give users the power of choice— result in heightened levels of consideration, favorability, and purchase intent (as compared with data from a control group with no such power).

Creative Choices Google Suggests to Get the Best ROI from Videos

Video does have a science to it. This science is evolving, so don’t consider anything as set in stone. Yet, as of now, Google advises this much for sure:

  1. You can use funny ads or celebrities to hold attention (although not necessarily to close the sale).
  2. Viewers respond better to your logo when it’s attached to a product (versus a free-floating logo).
  3. People don’t watch videos for as long when the “focus emotion” is sadness, fear, or calm; humor always leads to optimal results. For example, can you think of anything funny about trains? Probably not, but Metro Trains Melbourne created a “Dumb Ways to Die” video that added an element of dark humor to the otherwise boring topic of train safety.
  4. The impact of music is unclear, as some brands find not using music in the first 5 seconds leads to better engagement. With respect to emotions, funny wins out over any others when music is used. However, you’ll need to test your own video for best results.

Wrapping Up

Should you use video in your digital marketing strategy? You’ll need to be the judge of that. However, it beats television when analyzed just about any way. In fact, the average return on YouTube TrueView ad spend is about seven times that of TV.

For now, we’ll leave you with that fascinating statistic to consider.



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