How to Get Better Results Out of Your Video Ads

Bottom Shape

Krista Neher

Sep 20 2022

Video Ads

While social media and display ads can have clips as a format, when we talk about this placement we are discussing advertisements that appear before, during, or after a video online.

These are usually on YouTube, but can also be on other networks, like online streaming services, such as Hulu.

How they are purchased:

These are generally purchased based on impressions or views. An impression means that someone was served your ad – even for a fraction of a second. A view refers to the ad being viewed for a specific amount of time. Each ad network defines a video view differently.

When ads are force-viewed, meaning they appear before or during content you may purchase different lengths of views – for example, a 6-second view or a 15-second view.

The amount you pay for your ad is based on an open bidding system based on supply and demand.

Business Objectives:

Video ads are best at top-of-funnel ad objectives like brand awareness/attract and equity/nurture.

While you can run your ads on Facebook and Display, the view times on these mediums tend to be extremely short. Some Facebook videos have average watch times of only 1 second. This is because social media and display video ads run in the news feed or content – meaning people have to pause and pay attention to have an impact.

On YouTube, the ads are forced to be viewed because they appear within the content. This means that they can have a bigger impact; especially since video is a more impactful medium.

When They Don’t Work:

If you don’t have the budget for great video creativity this format won’t work well. Generally, video ads are a good fit for mid-sized to large businesses.

Unlike social networks, where a wide variety of videos can work on YouTube your ad is shown more like a commercial, so you’ll want to have creative that is designed for the format.

Video ads are great for top-of-funnel marketing objectives like attract and nurture but usually aren’t great at achieving action. Not a lot of people click on them, so they aren’t good at driving purchases.


Video ads can be targeted in a few different ways depending on the network. On YouTube, ads can be targeted by demographics or on the content you want the video to appear alongside.


Formats for video ads are typically based on the length of the ad (6 seconds, 15 seconds, etc.) and whether or not the ad is skippable.

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