YouTube makes video ads more actionable, driving 3.5% CTR for Vodafone

Brief:

Google’s YouTube is testing video ads that give marketers and brands more ways to interact with viewers who respond to a call-to-action message, per a statement shared with Mobile Marketer. YouTube is experimenting with extensions for its TrueView in-stream ads, which viewers can skip after five seconds, that let audiences do things like find a movie showtime, download an app, book a trip or watch another brand video.

Chili’s, 20th Century Fox, Maybelline and Vodafone are among the brands using YouTube’s extensions for mobile video ads. Vodafone saw a 2.3x incremental lift in ad recall and a 3.5% click-through rate (CTR), a 785% increase from a regional benchmark, from a video ad that had an extension.

The extensions will be available to all advertisers soon, per YouTube.
YouTube also partnered with market research firm IRI to let consumer packaged goods (CPG) advertisers measure their campaigns on the platform. Oracle Data Cloud and Nielsen Catalina Solutions (NCS) already offer measurement solutions for YouTube, while Nielsen MPA helps marketers measure the offline effect from video ads, per YouTube.

Insight:

YouTube’s rollout of video ad extensions likely will help mobile marketers and brands see more immediate and significant effects from their campaigns on the video-sharing platform. Calls-to-action have been a hallmark of direct-response advertising for years, but the response rates can be very slim when those ads are shown to a broad audience. YouTube’s ability to track individual viewers and keep a record of their viewing habits may help advertisers boost CTR and other kinds of actions because of better ad targeting.

Some of the ad extension formats, which have been in beta testing, have already yielded results. As Google explains in a case study, the Chili’s restaurant chain used “form ads,” a TrueView format geared for lead generation, to urge viewers to sign up for its My Chili’s Rewards loyalty program. Chili’s sought to raise awareness for its 3 for $10 deal, which includes a non-alcoholic beverage, appetizer and entrée for a flat price, and added a sign-up form to let viewers submit their name and email below a video ad. Chili’s campaign led to 7,800 form leads for the restaurant chain, per Google.

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