Displaying ads on YouTube has many benefits for advertisers, such as reach, interaction with the user’s favorite content, choice among different, multipurpose ad formats, and careful selection of the audience. As a marketing agency, we want to help advertisers get the most out of their video ads. Therefore, based on the analysis of user response to different approaches in advertising creative, we caught patterns that help to achieve the best results. Follow these tips and be sure you will be impressed with the result of promotion through video ads.

Current YouTube video ad formats

First, let’s take a look at kinds of YouTube video ads. Depending on the format of the ad, you will need videos that are completely different in duration and content.

The company constantly updates and tests different formats. The relevant options as at the beginning of 2022 were as follows:

  • Skippable/non-skippable In-Stream
  • In-feed video ads
  • Bumper ads
  • Out-Stream
  • Masthead ads

Video Ad Requirements and Guidelines

Skippable in-stream ads appear before or while watching a video. Their key feature is that after 5 seconds of viewing, the user can skip ads. The ads are not limited in their duration; however, we do not recommend creating videos longer than 3 minutes for this format.

Yes, many users will reflexively skip such ads after the first five seconds of viewing, but a great weight of the result depends on how catchy or useful your video is to watch it to the end.

Based on the bidding strategy, the displaying of such ads will be charged in different ways: both for watching the entire video to the end, and for the “Cost per mile” format. This ad format is suitable for increasing sales, attracting potential customers, increasing the amount of traffic, as well as brand and product awareness.

The main difference between non-skippable in-stream ads is their limited duration. Ads in the same way are shown at the beginning, middle or end of the video but no more than 15 seconds. Accordingly, such ads cannot be skipped, and the fee is withdrawn only according to the “Target cost per mile” strategy. These ads can be used to increase brand awareness and reach.

In-feed video ads are shown on the home page, in the list of search results or recommendations. At first glance, they differ only in the advertising mark. This ad is only charged when the user decides to open and watch the video. The obvious advantage of this format is unavailable reflex ad skipping option, unlike in-stream ads. If your goal is to increase interest in the brand and products, then such ad is the best choice.

Bumper ads are up to 6 seconds long and run while watching a video, just like in-stream ads. They are non-skippable and are charged only under the “Target CPM” model. The format is ideal for increasing brand reach and awareness.

Out-stream ads are a format that is not directly available for display on YouTube but runs video ads on Google video partners, namely websites and mobile applications. The ads are charged at a certain cost per thousand impressions in the visible area of ​​​​the screen. An ad is only counted when the user has viewed it for at least 2 seconds. The format is aimed at attracting users of mobile devices, therefore it is especially effective in situations where it was not possible to do this using other marketing tools.

Masthead ads are a widescreen video at the top of the YouTube home page that automatically plays silently after the page loads. These types of ads have huge benefits due to high visibility. But be aware: showing such ads will be much more expensive.

To run Masthead ads, you buy your ad placement at a certain cost per thousand impressions. That is, in this case, you cannot participate in the auction, unlike regular video campaigns.

This format is so massive that YouTube even offers a special tool for to test the appearance of the Masthead ad in advance to better understand the strengths and weaknesses of your ad.

Masthead is the best choice to draw maximum attention to new products or services, as well as quickly reach a wide audience.

How to Create the Perfect YouTube Video Ads

First, it is important to understand whether the duration of your future video is limited. For example, if non-skippable in-stream ads fit better your marketing purposes, then your video cannot be longer than 15 seconds.

Also, according to YouTube, more than 70% of content viewing time be accounted for by mobile devices. Therefore, when creating a video, make sure it will fit well a small screen. To do this, use as few small details as possible, take care of good lighting, image contrast and increase the font of the inscriptions, if any.

Video advertising is not only about the picture. Do not forget about a high-quality sound track, namely music, voice over, sound effects, etc. An audio track increases the effectiveness of advertising several times.

As for the content of the video, we will discuss below the key points of creating an eye-catchy and high-quality video ad.

Getting attention

A successful video ad will dramatically improve the effectiveness and profitability of your ads. To create it, you first need to attract the attention of users. As most people find advertising on YouTube quite familiar and even annoying, follow these rules to attract their attention:

  • Concentrate the shot on the key subject, be it a product or a person. This will make it easier to perceive and maintain user engagement. Use close-ups and different angles to better show your product.
  • Aim for a quick frame cut at least twice in the first 5 seconds of the video.
  • If the scenario includes people in the video, better show them at the very beginning. If it is appropriate, it will be good for the characters of the video to address the viewers directly. This is a great tool for capturing user attention and increasing engagement.
  • Use bright, unexpected and catchy visual images. It can be bright images, pleasant or unexpected colors, and any other unusual visual elements. This will help not only to attract attention but also to make your advertising memorable, causing pleasant impressions.

Look how different brands have approached product demos, angle changes, audio, and in-frame characters for their YouTube ads.

Focus on brand

One of the important goals of advertising is to increase brand awareness. This greatly increases the chances that if the client does not take a valuable action immediately after viewing the ad, then he will definitely choose you in the future among similar products or services.

To make your company eye-catchy, use the following techniques:

  • Present your product or brand first 5 seconds of the video.
  • If there are people in the video, then mentioning the brand by them will be much more effective than voice-over. Especially if there is a celebrity, opinion leader, etc.
  • Be sure to add your logo. It can be displayed on the product or as an overlay or watermark.
  • Use colors, melodies, or slogans in your video ad that are part of your company’s branding. It can also include original animated characters, mascots or brand ambassadors that will regularly appear in your promotional materials, which is especially valuable when creating a comprehensive marketing strategy. All this is aimed at recognizing and differentiating your brand among others.

Here are several different ways the companies approached the presentation of their brand to the user.


Once you’ve got attention, it’s time to show your product’s features and capabilities, and communicate what user problems it can solve. A great option is a simple and understandable explanation of the benefits, but at the same time to keep the user’s attention, you can add an emotional component, humor or intrigue to the message. Another useful technique is to refer to typical and familiar life situations.

See how the following examples use different moods to present the product. This shows well that your advertising can be different – both smooth and light-hearted and causing a strong emotional response.

A good example of intrigue was demonstrated by the Malaysian branch of KFC. The company wanted to tell customers about the new menu item. To do this, they launched a six-second video with the announcement to get users interested, and then showed the same audience a longer video with the detailed offer.

Call to action

A clear call to action is necessary to send the user a message of what action you expect from him: buy a product, go to the site, register, leave a request, etc. It can be voiced, animated, or written on the screen. You can even combine several options at the same time.

It has been proven that mentioning the limited availability of an offer can improve the effect of advertising. Noting about a limited promotion period or quantity of goods increases the chances of a conversion.

Video advertising is one of the promotion formats, which success depends on advertising creatives as much as possible. It really depends on how much your video can attract the user’s attention to your product, service or brand, but don’t be afraid. Follow our advice, look for inspiration from market leaders, think about how your ads should make the user feel, and never fear to try new.

No matter how much depends on the video, the main advantage of YouTube Ads is the ability to show certain ads to the right audience at a particular moment in time. To make sure this happens, contact WellWebMarketing’s contextual advertising setup team. We will help you combine creativity and analytics to bring your business to the top.