Before transforming Search Star HQ into a scaled-down Garden of Eden and massaging us to within an inch of our lives, Google kicked off our Grow Local celebration with a talk from Philosoflow founder and all-round YouTube marketing mastermind, Adam Engelhardt. The former Googler came all the way from Denmark to tell us about advertising on the world’s most popular video site. Here’s what he had to say:
- YouTube’s TrueView advertising solutions put the audience in the driver’s seat. After five seconds of video ad, they can choose either to continue watching or proceed to the main video – and if they click away before watching 30 seconds of ad, there’s no charge to the advertiser. It’s a win-win situation: users only watch the content they want to watch, and advertisers only pay for views from engaged users.
- This puts the onus on the advertiser to create fun, thought-provoking, compelling content. Audiences these days won’t sit through any old rubbish, and if they don’t like what they see, they’ll click away. Essentially, if you can’t grab your audience’s attention within that unskippable five-second window of opportunity, your campaign is toast…
- …Or is it? Adam let us in on a little secret: every video ad also comes with a free companion image ad which sits in the upper right-hand corner of the screen while the main video plays. What this means is that even if a user skips your ad before 30 seconds have elapsed, you’ll still have bagged yourself an image ad placement for diddly squat. And they say there’s no such thing as a free lunch (incidentally, we did also get an actual free lunch from Google after the presentation).
- Adam went on to put theory into practice with a case study: Cophenhagen’s The Standard jazz club. Nice. Thanks to TrueView marketing, an advertising spend of just £265 yielded 1,100 extra bookings, representing an impressive fivefold return on investment. Very nice.
Finally, Adam threw down the gauntlet and challenged us to devise an irresistible, unskippable pre-roll video ad of our own. Did we rise to the occasion? Could we have a new Gangnam Style on our hands? And will Dan let us bunk off for another
afternoon so we can actually film it? You’ll just have to watch this space – for 30 seconds, at least…