01:16 – Most people don’t like it
03:36 – Picking the right moment
06:30 – Delivering “aducation”
09:14 – The best type of audience
13:34 – What’s your call to action?
17:10 – Where the links go
18:55 – Commanding the ads
20:55 – On boosting videos
22:11 – What should your first video be?
23:59 – Summing it up
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James: James Schramko here from SuperFastBusiness.com. I am talking to my friend Tom Breeze from Viewability.co.uk. Welcome Tom.
Tom: Thanks James.
James: If you’ve just joined us, this is actually part two of a three-part series. It’s the YouTube Advertising Tips series. In part one, Tom and I talked video advertising. We covered the different moments of where a customer might be at when they’re on YouTube, and why YouTube is so powerful, and what types of options are available to you in terms of placement, and a little bit of ad strategy I guess we covered.
In this particular episode, part two, we’re going to be going deep into the messaging. I’m going to hand over to Tom to just take us through some of the most important things regarding what you actually need to do in terms of picking your moment and so on.
Most people don’t like seeing YouTube ads
Tom: Yeah good point. I mean I think that when it comes to running ads on YouTube, it’s important that we understand that most people don’t like seeing YouTube ads. I don’t think anyone really gets up in the morning and thinks, I must make sure I watch more YouTube ads today because I love them so much. That never happens. [laughs]
James: I bet you do. I bet that applies to Tom.
Tom: Yeah, I do. Actually, do you know what, my son Milo has this knack at the moment of waking up at 4:45 in the morning and running through to our bedroom and basically just jumping on me and wants to get out for the morning. When it’s really early, I reach over to my iPhone and get out, gotta go onto the YouTube app and try and type in Peppa Pig, which is basically a children’s TV program that he actually really loves. When I typed in just the other day, I pressed Peppa Pig, pressed play, and then on your iPhone, you can do this special thing where you triple click the home button, which basically goes onto some cool guided access and locks the phone, so it carries on playing Peppa Pig but you can’t touch any controls.
This is a difficult thing to set up in the morning anyway at 4:45. I’m not in the best state to sort out my phone. But this one I did. I set it up for him and passed over but a pre-roll ad began. This pre-roll ad was this beautiful lady in bed, looks like she has the longest lie-in in the morning ever, and she looks completely refreshed. She was talking about how clean her sheets were and things. I was like this is the wrong time to be advertising to me. This is like, all I want to do is give Milo Peppa Pig and let him watch this. But instead, I have to sit through this pre-roll ad of this lady in bed selling me her fabric softener or whatever it was.
So it’s kind of like, we joked about it in the team. There’s certain moments when you need to advertise, which work really well. And there’s certain moments when you should definitely not be advertising. They’re just going to really annoy your customers. So that was kind of like a thing that we always notice is that most people get it completely wrong when advertising on YouTube, and they just think that, hey, I’ll show my TV-ad-style video to everybody that I can get in front of and hopefully something will work.
Right now, the numbers do work when you do it like that. But it’s not the best experience that you can provide your customers with. So it needs a bit of refinement because you can run ads a lot more effectively on YouTube. That’s hopefully something that we can tackle now.
James: Right. So the main point of that is that it’s not a good match for Peppa Pig.
Understanding your customer’s moment
Tom: [laughs] Well this is the thing right, it’s about understanding where your customer is in that moment in time. So it’s their moment. So say for example for me, if I’m selling fabric softener, then I know that if I’m going to get in front of an audience at 4:45 in the morning and we’re looking at Peppa Pig, that’s got to be parents for kids who have woken up too early in the morning. You can advertise based on time, and based on location, and all that sort of good stuff. But you know, at 4:45 in the morning, that’s definitely a parent looking up Peppa Pig for their kid at that point.
So they don’t want to see some ad about how this beautiful lady is in bed like having a beautiful lie-in. You might want to get in front of that audience because it’s potentially going to be parents looking up Peppa Pig, but it’s gotta be a better message surely than just showing like a TV-style ad. It’s a better way of helping out that parent in that moment in time and still selling your fabric softener but doing it in a much better way. I could probably think of an idea of how you could do that. Right now, if you wish.
James: What, like a kid coming in and messing up the sheets?
Tom: Yeah. Well you could probably have something. Whilst I think off the cuff right now, you could probably have something whereby, say for example if I was to pick up my phone and look up Peppa Pig, if the ad started off with like a parent who’s also in the same situation as me, like a kid might be jumping on them and be like, don’t you find a morning so difficult when it’s this early? If they started off like that, I might be like, hey, this really resonates with me. This sounds exactly like what I’m going through at this moment in time.
And then they say, “Here’s three tips you can do to make your morning a lot better, a lot easier”, and then gave you three really useful tips that you could potentially use in the morning to help out the morning with your kids. I think that is a three-step quick tip thing that could be delivered probably in like 20 seconds and then have a really good call to action.
Maybe that last tip might be like, “Hey, another thing is, wash your sheets with our fabric softener because you’re going to find that it smells better for a week,” or whatever it might be. Sell the benefit of your fabric softener as a third tip. It’s going to be a much more congruent sale.
But I’m in a frame of mind then where you provided me with a value, with good content, and I’m willing to take on that sales message at the end because I feel like I’ve gained something from watching that video ad, instead of purely someone just trying to sell to me when I’m not in the moment and not ready to be sold to. I think that’s a much, much better way of advertising.
We see that with the numbers with our clients as well. When we go for that educational and helpful standpoint first off, you’re going to get a much better result than if you were to go straight for the sale sometimes.
James: Right. Firstly, I imagine a lot of corporates are just playing and spraying like anything and everywhere across like a shotgun because it’s just so cheap. It’s very fascinating to me how much thought you’ve put into the specific timing and the message of that video. So educational, is that your big tip in terms of the messaging?
Ads that educate
“Provide customers with a really good experience in the first ad that you show them.”
Tom: Yes. We’re very clever with our wording. We call that aducation just to try and be a play on words. But it is exactly that. We always like to provide customers with a really good experience in the first ad that you show them. There’s always time and a place for more of a direct sale video sale afterwards. But knowing that we can build a remarketing list of people that watch your videos, and collect them, and know that we can get back in touch with them, it’s much, much more powerful to start off with an ad whereby you provide a really good experience. People get to know, like, and trust you, and they feel like, wow, this is different than what I was expecting.
And then there’s a natural continuation from that ad anywhere to have a call to action in it of that first, kind of good aducation ad where it might provide free tips or something along those lines. But then, those people that watch the video and don’t convert have still got a really good experience with you, so you can follow up those people with a more direct sell ad at that point.
But I always suggest to people to say, “Look, start off with some sort of good content piece that people can get to know, like, and trust you with, because the clever features that you get with AdWords and YouTube means you can always get back in front of that audience very cheap and provide them with a more direct sale piece. We did that a lot for clients that might be offering a video series for example, like a video training series as part of their lead magnet or something along those lines.
And we say, “Let’s promote that first.” If people watch your video ad and they get a really good experience from you and then don’t decide to opt in or register, then we’ll take that list to people and then we’ll promote them a one-time webinar that you might be doing a week later. But they’ve already got to experience you as a brand and got a really good feel for you. The chances of them wanting to sign up for your webinar is very, very high. It’s just a different type of lead magnet or a free offer they might like to take. But we can get in front of them with remarketing, which is very cheap as well.
So it’s understanding the fact that there’s a functionality on YouTube and AdWords and running your ads like that and also thinking about the customer experience and what customers are gaining from you. So whenever we create a campaign, we always think about where do we want to show up? Where do we need to be? If we can be there and be helpful, that’s the first strategy, and it keeps things simple as well. We don’t have to be really thinking about a real creative ad or anything like that. We just think, hey look, if we met them in the real world and we knew they are searching for something, as the expert, what would we say? What we be able to give them that’s actually going to be useful for them, and start there. Don’t try and over complicate it with a really clever, creative ad because that just slows down everything. It’s more a case of just meeting that moment that someone’s in and providing them with value.
James: So what type of customer do you get the best results for? Is there one or two categories that work really well for this type of campaign?
The perfect audience
Tom: Yeah. We tend to get a lot of authors, and speakers, and trainers, people where they’re taking on a large volume of people, maybe running events or running online trainings where they can work with an international audience. That tends to be like our perfect audience because once we find an angle whereby we can run their ads and it works out really cost-effectively for them, then it’s the amount of scale that we tend to get. As long as their audience are naturally on YouTube, and they typically always are, and it’s the case of finding that audience, if we can pinpoint those different moments their customers are in and if they’re on YouTube, we can tend to do very, very well for those types of clients.
The example I normally give to people is like, this is when we try and move away from keywords and more into moments, is like, say for example, you’re an osteopath. Let’s just take an osteopath for example at the moment. If you’re an osteopath and you wanted to advertise to your local area, you might be thinking things like back pain, lower back pain, and words in that effect will be your major keywords. Whereas really, as an osteopath, if you really thought about trying to gain a greater reach, you might think well, even keywords like marathon training could be a really good keyword for you because when someone’s in that moment and they go onto YouTube to type in marathon training, they’re probably not aware that lower back pain is one of the biggest problems that stops people from running marathons. So it’s a moment, as an osteopath, where you can create a video to give a good piece of content and advice to say, “Hey look, if you’re going to run a marathon, did you know that the biggest problem that most marathon runners have is lower back pain and it stops them from competing, it stops them from getting good times? But it’s actually really simple. There’s only a few exercises you need to do every now and again just to loosen up your back before you go for a run. And here they are.”
And then you might give them like three exercises to do prior to any training run they might do. But then at least that marathon runner knows that you are in the local area, you exist. So inevitably, they’re going to get back pain at some point anyway, and immediately, they’re going to come and call you because you’ve given them good advice, given them a good experience, and they know you’re in the local area. You’ve done your ad like a really good service in fact. You’re able to get in front of your audience with a really good message and know that you can generate customers that way as well.
James: Did you develop that campaign on your most recent marathon run?
Tom: Yeah, I know. As soon as I got lower back pain when I was training from the recent London marathon, I was like, I should go and get an osteopath as a client because there must be so many people that go through this. Or if there’s such a thing as like a virtual osteopath, if there’s someone who can train you on how to have a stronger back for running or something along those lines. I was typing in like, “marathon training” and there was no ads running whatsoever. I just thought, wow this is crazy. There’s such an opportunity, there’s such a moment that so many people are missing out on both international campaigns and local chiropractors and osteopaths. No one is taking advantage. I see that all the time on YouTube. There’s no one there and it’s so easy as a brand to be there. I think the YouTube stats, or Google did some kind of stats with their insights team, they said 90% of the time, brands are not there when the customers need them.
“90 percent of the time, brands are not there when the customers need them.”
I’m always in the mindset like, oh well, the penny’s going to drop soon enough for these big brands, and they’re going to get the idea of how to do it. But I’ve said that for the last two or three years and they still haven’t got their act together to actually master YouTube ads. It just leaves it all wide open for us as entrepreneurs to be able to look at how YouTube works and be a bit clever about it. OK, let’s just run some simple campaigns and notice the results you get because nine times out of 10, when you are running effective campaigns, it’s so easy to get a result. It just makes sense, because it’s just like, being there and being helpful is going to be the two big things that need to be tackled when it comes to YouTube ads.
James: Right. So in that case, you’re not going for the obvious one where people are searching for the solution. You’re getting in there slightly upstream and let them know, hey this is about to be a problem, we’re making you aware of it now. What kind of call to action do you put in these videos?
Call to action
Tom: Yeah. Good question. What we tend to do is we sort of map out those moments. So say for example as the osteopath, we’d say, people that are running marathons, people that are about to do some gardening, for example, because you always have back pain when you go and garden, or it was like, think about all the different moments their customers tend to have and the reasons why people might turn up to their clinic naturally anyway. You want to try and get in front of those moments. And if you choose one of those moments and say, let’s say for example it’s going to be the marathon one and you’ve selected, say right, we’re going to get in front of people typing in marathon training in our local area, then you just have a think about what would I say to those people? Starting off any script with a ‘did you know’ is normally a good idea because it just sparks that interest and gets you past that first five seconds where someone could press the Skip Ad button.
Then what you want to do is make sure have like a tip or maybe three tips. One video that I use, I have like the five steps to crush it with YouTube ads. It’s worked really well for me for over a year now. And really what I do is I say, “Hey look, in this video, I’m going to show you exactly how to crush it with YouTube ads with five simple steps.” Then I build in a bit of credibility so they know who I am and maybe have some videos of me on stage for example just to build in a a bit of that credibility.
And if it’s a long video, I would have a call to action quite early on in the video. Maybe like 30 seconds in, have a call to action. Just let people know that hey look, if you liked the content I shared with you in this video, you can always go and grab the cheat sheets, or you can always go and grab the training video that I’ve put together for you, or whatever it is you might have for a free offer, a webinar, whatever it might be. So you might quickly put a call to action there to say, “Click the link in the video, and it will take you straight back to my landing page where you can sign up or register.”
So I’d normally do that quite early on in the video if the video is going to be quite a long video. And then I’ll deliver the content, maybe the three steps or whatever it’s going to be. And then at the very end again, I’ll remind people to say, “Hey look, if you liked the content of this video, I’ve got something that you’ll absolutely love.” And then explain what you have for them and give them a real clear call to action. But know this, it should be a continuation from that moment they’re in to take the next step with you. So if you’ve picked that moment of the marathon training, you’re going to give someone maybe an exercise to do to loosen up their lower back before they’re going to a run.
Then your call to action might be something along the lines of, “Hey look, this is just one exercise. I hope you can appreciate that one exercise isn’t going to strengthen your back forever. You probably need to come in and do a diagnosis session with me so I can work out exactly how your back is aligned right now, get it correctly aligned, show you some other techniques of how to improve your back strength. And then you know that it’s never going to be a problem for you as a marathon runner.” And give them a good offer at that point. So come in for a free session or maybe a paid session or whatever it is you can potentially provide those potential customers.
That’s where I would kind of put a good call to action there so it feels like for the viewer, they’re getting great value from you, and they’re getting a great offer from you as well should they wish to take it. And then you know that all the remarketing can come together as well because if there’s a date where that marathon might be happening, maybe a week before the marathon’s about to run, you can get in front of them with a last kind of like, “Here’s a warm-up-your-back session before the marathon.”
And then even post marathon as well. You could probably get in front them with a different type of ad and say, “Hello, come in. I’ll help you to relax your muscles after the marathon.” If anyone was to advertise that to me while I was training for the marathon, I would have definitely taken that up as something important because I know that especially after the marathon how stiff and painful it was, I know that I’d definitely would have bought anything that would make me feel more comfortable. So it would have been very easy to sell it to me at that point.
James: Where are they putting these links? Are they in the video? Are they underneath the video? How do they work?
Putting links on the video
Tom: So you’ve got links in the video. There’s different types of links actually. When you’re running your ad, you’re going to have something called an external annotation, which is where people put annotations on videos all the time. You’ve probably seen on YouTube whereby it almost feels like it’s a colored box sometimes, where you can click that box, and it takes you through to another video potentially. But you can actually have those links if you set it up correctly inside your YouTube account. You can have it so that the link goes directly back to your website. So you can have it like that, and that’s called an external annotation.
One thing that I really like at the moment is the call to action overlay. Once you’re running your video as an ad, if you go back into your YouTube settings, you’ll be given an option to be able to add a call to action overlay. And this is where in the bottom lefthand corner of your video, it’s almost like a little, clickable link, kind of like expands and contracts based on if people hover over that area. It means if they click that link, it will also take them back to your landing page or whichever page you wish to direct people to.
Those are the two that I think are the easiest ones to set up. There is another one when you set up your YouTube ad inside of AdWords, you have to give AdWords link, and that does appear on the video, but it appears right on the bottom left, and we found that it’s better to have links also manually added in. So with the external annotations and the call to action overlays, it’s great to have those as well as that additional link on the pre-roll ad because that ad, that link that AdWords gives you is quite subtle and people miss it. So it’s easier sometimes to just use a call to action overlay or the external annotation.
James: Right. So I’m just trying to picture this, and forgive me for such a basic question, but where are we actually commanding all of these ads? Is this in our AdWords account or is it somewhere in YouTube?
How YouTube works with AdWords
Tom: So your YouTube channel will be connected to your AdWords account. You would upload your video to YouTube, which would be your ad, you would upload that as an ad to your YouTube channel and then once you’ve linked to a YouTube channel with your AdWords account, you’ll then be able to go inside your AdWords account and set it up as an ad. So you’d then say, “Right, this is the URL of my video ad. I want to advertise that video.” Then it will be all the targeting options as well inside of AdWords. And that’s the way it will be set up. But the links from the videos themselves would be setup on YouTube and AdWords, which is really confusing, I know. But it means that you have the external annotations and a call to action overlays set up inside your YouTube channel. And then you’d have your link from your AdWords ad, which is also on the video ad that appears right on the bottom lefthand corner that will be set up inside of AdWords.
I know that all sounds very confusing but I always say to people, “Look, get started, and it’ll be obvious once you actually start running your ads where the links appear.”
James: And is it easy to link the accounts together? So if I had a SuperFastBusiness AdWords account and a SuperFastBusiness YouTube channel, they can be linked?
Tom: Of course. Yeah, you can actually link more than one YouTube account. So say for example, some of my clients have like four or five YouTube accounts for different reasons, but they might have one AdWords account, you can link all those five YouTube accounts or YouTube channels to that one AdWords account; meaning you can take remarketing lists off all of your channels and advertise back to all those people again, which is really useful sometimes because if you have channels for whatever reason, and you have like multiple of them, and they have lots of videos getting views, etc., you might say, “Oh, I’d love to take that audience that are viewing that video and advertise to them on a different channel. You can do that. You can set that up.
James: Right. And if you had a good organic YouTube video in your YouTube channel, is this something that you would suggest to boost it?
Should you boost your video?
Tom: Yeah of course. If the organic video you have has got a call to action, and it’s getting a good response for you, then definitely yeah, you might want to run it as a pre-roll ad, you might want to run as an in-display ad as well, and promote that video for sure because if it’s working for you, why not?
The great thing is if it’s getting good view time and people are actually watching it as an ad as well, that’ll boost for the SEO as well. So you’ll get more activity happening on it, you’ll get more clicks, you’ll get more likes, etc. As a result, you’ll generate more SEO result for you as well. You’ll rank higher in the video searches. That’s actually something that we used to do in the agency, is use advertising to boost up SEO results as well.
But yeah, so I will say if you’ve got a good video ad, I’d run it as a pre-roll and run it as an in-display. Most of the time though, you can probably create an in-stream ad, that’s specifically designed as an in-stream ad to meet the moment that someone’s in, and if you do that, you’re going to get a better result. But not to say that you can’t go and take a video, an existing video that is working really well for you, and go and promote that because that will get you good results as well.
James: What’s the first video someone should make for their advertising campaign?
First video to do
Tom: Good question. I think that the first video that someone should make would be a one-minute tip video. Kind of like, think about the moment where your customer is going to be typing in what they’re searching for, think about your one tip that would be really useful for that person in that moment in time, like if you were to give them one tip, here’s what it would be, and it would be groundbreaking for that viewer. That’s the tip you want to give.
So structure the whole ad around that tip. And then what you want to do is put a claim at the start of the video. Say, “Did you know…” and then give some good content to grab their attention and then say, “So in this video, I’m going to show you one tip that will really help you do…” whatever it is that someone’s looking to do.
“On YouTube, people are looking to know something, do something, or buy something.”
On YouTube, people are looking to know something, do something, or buy something. So those three contexts are such like, make sure you’re delivering your message based on that. And just show them or give them information. Show them what you mean. So just try and be as most helpful as you can be in one minute and then have a really strong call to action to say, “Hey look, this is just one snippet of what I can give to you. I’ve got a whole webinar (or whatever it is) for you to go and register and we can go through some of that in more detail.”
If you just think of one tip that’s going to be really useful for that moment for that person and then have a strong call to action, that’s where it gets started. And don’t try and overcomplicate things. Don’t try and really create this really creative ad or anything like that. Just think, what would I say to this person if I met them in the real world? What advice would I have for them? And that’s the ad itself. Don’t try and be really clever about it. Just run your ad because you’ll be amazed at the response you get when you get a really good ad running.
James: Boom! Tom drops the mic. That’s a good one.
OK. Just to summarize this particular situation, like to bring us up-to-date, in this episode, we’ve really talked in a lot more detail about meeting people where they’re at, you’ve given a hot tip there with the “did you know” idea, we’ve gone into a little more detail about where you put the ads, what you actually put in your ad, how the call to action works, and that sets us up nicely actually for episode three.
So what we’re going to be doing in the next episode is pull apart a few case studies on selling books, memberships, and events. Tom Breeze from Viewability.co.uk. Thank you for sharing all this information, and I look forward to catching you on the next episode.
Tom: Looking forward to it. That’s great.
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