Avoid the Top 5 YouTube Ad Mistakes
It’s no secret that YouTube ads are a great way to drive leads and sales, add more revenue to the bottom line of your business, or just help build brand awareness. And you can do all of that and more much more effectively if you just avoid these top five YouTube ad mistakes that I constantly see people making.
Justin Sardi, CEO and co-founder of tubesift.com here, and like I said, today we’re going to be talking about the top five mistakes that I see people make when they are using YouTube ads. So let’s go ahead and jump right in, knock those five mistakes out, and honestly, if you can avoid making these top five mistakes, you are going to have much better odds at having a successful campaign and getting the most out of your ad spend.
Mistake # 1 – Having a Lame Ad
Mistake number one is having a lame ad creative, right? Now, obviously it’s a video ad. We’re talking YouTube ads so you have to make sure that your ad resonates with your audience. I cannot tell you how many ads I’ve seen that are terrible, boring, static, awful voices, terrible audio, things like that. You are using a video ad and you need to make a quality video. It doesn’t matter if you’re selling e-commerce products, you’re doing lead generation, whatever it is, you need clear audio, clear video, and you need to make it engaging. One of the most important things with an ad is the first five seconds, which is where you’re going to hook your audience. You don’t have solid hook, the rest of your video is really going to suffer. We do have a scripting guide. That’s going to help you script that. You can pick that up, we’ll link to that below, but ultimately you just need to keep your ad engaging.
If you’re not quite sure how exactly to do that, I’d encourage you to either use Tube Sift, search for some of the keywords that your audience is going to be searching for, then you can find some of the other ads that are running in the niche, using our ads by feature, that’s the easiest way to do it. Or you can jump on over to YouTube, do a search for those same videos, and you can then see what videos are ranking in the search results. Because the ones that are ranking at the top of the YouTube search results are going to be the videos that people are watching. That’s the ones that your audience is most into, so definitely try and model those, speak that type of talk if you can, set your videos up like that, and you’ll have a much better chance of connecting with your ideal audience.
Mistake # 2 – Not using Companion Banners correctly
Now, common mistake number two, and this one, I see this from major brands as well and it just blows my mind. Now, when you’re running an in-stream ad, there is what’s called a companion banner and that’s in the top right-hand corner, it’s a 300 by 60 pixel banner that gives you additional ad real estate. Now that companion banner is actually clickable and it doesn’t cost anything extra to set up. It’s a very simple thing to do, and you can easily create it using Tube Sift’s banner studio. We have templates and everything. I can’t count how many times I’ve seen people using just lame companion banners that have nothing on them, they’re not engaging, they have no calls to action, nothing like that. So I would definitely avoid not using a companion banner. You have to be using a companion banner. Like I said, I see big brands making this mistake as well and it just blows my mind because it doesn’t cost anything extra.
Mistake # 3 – Not having congruent messaging across sales funnel
Mistake number three that I see all too often is not having congruent messaging from your ad to your landing page to your thank you page. Nothing breaks the trust that you have with your ideal prospect or your lead or whatever it is, your cold traffic, more than saying, you’re going to give them something or promising something and then not delivering. If you say on your video, for example, “Hey, click the link on this video and I’m going to take you to a free training,” you had better say on your landing page, “Hey, get the free training.” Boom. You have to deliver what you say you’re going to, and that especially goes for thank you pages when you’re collecting emails.
Let’s say you are running a lead generation campaign and you’re offering a free PDF cookbook or something along those lines. Nothing burns the trust than getting the email and not delivering the cookbook. I mean, why would somebody buy from you after you couldn’t even deliver something for free? You have to make sure that you deliver exactly what you said you were going to, and more importantly, keep your messaging from incongruent throughout your ad, your landing page, and your thank you page. It just makes everything seem more legitimate and it’s going to do much better as far as performance of your video ad campaign goes.
One thing that I do like to do with these campaigns is address one problem, one solution, and that’s especially true for lead generation campaigns. It’s a really good tip, right there, is just, yeah. One problem, one solution. Try not to overwhelm and sell too much in the video ad, unless maybe you’re selling a physical product, then it makes a lot of sense to show the product and be like, “Hey, check out this cool iPad,” or, “Check out this road wireless go microphone thing.” Obviously a physical product you can demo it on there, that’ll do a lot of the selling, but if you are maybe doing a webinar or you’re selling some type of digital product, something like that, try not to just sell it all on the … The sales page should do the selling. The job of the video ad in that case would be to push them to the sales page.
Mistake # 4 – Not targeting your audience correctly
Mistake number four that I see all too often is not targeting your audience correctly and this one honestly blows my mind because with YouTube advertising, it is so easy to target your ideal audience using tools like Tube Sift. You can literally target people based on specific videos that you know they’re going to be watching. If you know somebody’s watching a video on, and let’s say you sell some type of anti-pull dog harness and you know that, “Hey, what kind of videos might ideal audience be watching?” Well, they’d probably be watching a video about how to make my dog not pull on a leash. Those things need your product at the exact moment they’re searching for those videos on YouTube. If you can put your ad in front of them at that exact moment, odds are you’re going to be able to make the sale.
The common problem I see with not targeting your audience correctly is people starting very broad and they’ll have a specific ad, they’ll be like, “All right, I’m going to test it,” and they just go broad. They’re like, “I’m going to try topics, placements, keywords, this, this, all these different audiences,” and they just start cramming things into these campaigns. They’re like, “It’s not working.” When really, if they would have just started with something like placements or keywords or even audiences, just one of those things and did a small test on a small segment, figured out if that ad was working and then start expanding it into bigger markets, you would have a lot more data to work with, figure out what’s working, get your whole campaign dialed in before you go super broad. That’s definitely something I see is people starting to broad and not targeting a specific enough audience to start off with to test these things out.
Mistake # 5 – Not using Calls-to-Action
Mistake number five, I see is people not using CTAs or calls to action on their video. Now, I personally like to build my calls to action in my video and say something like, “Click the link in the bottom left-hand corner,” or, “Click that banner up top.” Earlier in this video, I talked about companion banners. Well, that’s one form of call to action or a CTA. Now, underneath that, there’s also a little blue button with a call to action and some text that you can throw on a button, and then also in the bottom left-hand corner of the video ad, the in-stream ads specifically, you’re going to see that call to action as well.
Now, some campaigns, like the campaigns with goals, they automatically come with that call to action turned off, but if you’re building a campaign with no goal, and maybe you’re going with cost per view bidding, you’re not going to be able to automatically have that turned on and you’re going to need to click the little button that says “Enable CTA” or “Use CTA,” I forget exactly what it says, but you basically click that CTA button. It’ll have a little dropdown where you can put your two lines of text and just by using that or enabling that feature, you’re going to get a significant amount more clicks and we all know that the more clicks you get, the more ROI you’re going to get from your campaigns because if you’re only getting, let’s say you’re one out of every 100 people that click buy your offer or even 10 out of every 100 people that click, if you were only getting 50 clicks, instead of 100 clicks, you’re making the sales, but you’re paying the same amount of money. It’s very important to use those CTAs to make sure that people know when and where to click on your video.
Avoid these mistakes by using TubeSift
That’s it for the top five most common mistakes that I see. Most of these cases actually be solved by using Tube Sift. Like I said, you can use our companion banner builder in the banner design studio. You can find all your targeting in the placement finder. You can also use our ad spy feature to really figure out what’s working and dial your video ad in. Most of those problems can be solved by signing up for a Tube Sift license, which you can get by clicking the description in this video or if you’re watching this on the blog, you can also get that by clicking the buy button, the sign up now button right under this video as well.
That’s it for me on this. If you do have any feedback, please leave us a comment. If you want us to make any specific blog posts or videos for you, let me know in the comments as well and I will see you on the next blog post. Bye for now.
How to Avoid Mistake 1 – Don’t have Lame Ads
- Video Ad Scripting for Growth: Create an Effective Hook
- Video Ad Scripting for Growth: Prime the Pitch
- Video Ad SCripting for Growth: Pitch the Value of your Offer
- Find Inspiration for your YouTube Ads
How to Avoid Mistake 2 – Use a Companion Banner
How to Avoid Mistake 3 – Use congruent messaging across Sales Funnel
How to Avoid Mistake 4 – Target your Audience Correctly
How to Avoid Mistake 5 – Use Calls to Action
- Demonstrate Value with YouTube Ads
- Add call to action overlays to YouTube ads from Display and Video 360 Help
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