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T&C 2020: The Ultimate Ad Trifecta – 7 Ways to Scale with YouTube, GDN and Gmail Ads During the Current Online Boom

by Christina Hooper.
Last Updated on May 8, 2022

This article is part of a series breaking down the top takeaways from the key speakers at T&C 2020.

What Was This Session All About?

It’s no secret that the pandemic created an online “boom'' of usage. While many companies sadly didn’t survive it, many digital marketing companies could take advantage of it and grow their companies. 

Brett Curry is one of those people. His specialty is YouTube ads, and he took some time at the T&C Summit to walk us through the details of using the ads and your options. 

So, before we dive into what Brett had to say, let’s take a look at who he is.

Who is Brett Curry?

  • CEO of OMG Commerce
  • He is the host of the eCommerce Evolution Podcast. 
  • Google Premier Partner
  • Team of 42 and growing
  • One of the Top Spending Agencies on YouTube Ads. 
  • The author of The Ultimate Guide to Google Shopping (in partnership with Shopify)

What We Learned

Brett wants to help your business grow from $0 in YouTube Spend to $1,000 to $25,000 per day at CPA Goal. This achievement is what his company has become known for. 

The online boom, or increase in online activity, consists of online consumption and eCommerce. 

TV Screen watch time has grown 80% as people have stayed home. Some YouTube channels have grown up to 100% in organic views. 

Capitalize on Increased Inventory and Lower Costs

Video inventory is measured in time. There are only so many spaces during the periods in a video and only so much ad space. Prices with YouTube are remaining fairly steady, even during the pandemic. 

Advertisers who ran TrueView for Action campaigns saw 31% more conversions between March and April 2020. Quarter 4 (or the last quarter of the year) of eCommerce Industry Insights grew about 44%. Even as stores are opening up, growth was still massive throughout the end of 2020. 

So how do we capitalize on this?

Part One: Understand YouTube Creatives

Understanding YouTube

  • 5-35% ROI driven by targeting
  • 50-80% ROI driven by creative (Your ad) 

Different Structure with YouTube Ads

YouTube ads have a different structure than most ads. With Facebook, you have your copy around your video or image, which is just there to stop your scrolling. 

YouTube isn’t like broadcast TV, but it’s more like direct response TV commercials. 

Can’t Just Grab Attention

The video has to do all the heavy lifting because it’s all someone sees. There’s no block of text like there is on Facebook. 

Different Pace

There’s a different pace with YouTube ads. Think about movie trailers and the evolution of movie trailers from the 1980s. There are 5 seconds of introduction, saying it’s been approved for all audiences. Then, there’s a buildup for about 6 to 10 seconds. Then, they have a climax and build-up to the action for about 11 to 30 seconds. 

Now, they spend the first 5 seconds hooking you. There might be an explosion, singing, or something engaging and exciting. Then, there are often multiple climaxes throughout the trailer. So, they are engaging from the beginning. YouTube ads do the same thing. 

Traditional Story Arc (Habit from TV)

  • Lead-in
  • Build
  • Climax and the big reveal
  • Offer
  • Branding

Emerging Story Arc (Attention is a muscle)

  • Start high
  • Subtle branding cues
  • Unexpected shifts
  • Multiple peaks
  • More story for those who want it. 

Say Enough

You have to say enough, and if you don’t pique someone’s interest enough, that’s not going to be enough for YouTube. The sweet spot for YouTuber commercials is 1:30 minutes to 3:30 minutes. You have to say enough, so you don’t want it to be too short. But you don’t want it to be too long, because they’ll lose interest. 

Story > Production Value

Often commercials have been shot with an iPhone. Others have spent large amounts on productions. Both types of commercials have success. 

You need to be more compelling than impressive. Make them say, “What a great product,” not “What a great ad.” 

Direct Benefits and social proof are more significant than clever copy. 

Opening > Middle

You want to hook people with your opening. CTAs are greater than taglines. 

Part Two: Follow the YouTube Formula

  1. Lead with the Strongest Benefits 

 Hook the right audiences and repel the wrong audience. You only pay if someone engages in the commercials, so it pays to engage and hook the right person. Include a thought-provoking question or statement that leads into your video. 

Test multiple openings. Try them out on different types of people. Have different ads for different audiences. 

  1. Overcome Objections

Bust the myths, destroy excuses, and suspend doubt. If any of these remain, they won’t go to your site. 

  1. Increase Believability with Social Proof

Include a video testimonial, include good reviews and ratings, and other types of proof that show your product works. Use your ideal customer in a testimonial touting benefits for overcoming objections. 

  1. Make it Irresistible

Now, people think it might work for them, but they’re not sure. So, assume the risk. Offer warranties and money-back guarantees. Stack the value, showing how much money they’re saving by buying it on sale. Make it really hard to say no. 

  1. Move Them to Take Action

You have a blue Call to Action button on YouTube. You can put anything you want there, but often “Visit Site” and “Learn More” have the most significant response rate. 

Part Three: Leverage MoF and BoF YouTube Creatives

If you can close more people at the bottom of the funnel and middle of the funnel, we can spend more at the top of the funnel. 

Build Viewed Video Audiences and Build Remarketing Audiences. 

Think about, “Why haven’t they purchased it yet?” There are usually two reasons: they need a reminder, or they need convincing. So, you need to include more examples and more products. 

Create an extended explainer or expert interviews.

Part Four: Start with the Best Audiences

86% of people turn to Google for ideas about what product to buy. Re-engage them on YouTube with custom intent audiences. This last year, custom-intent used to be based on what people have searched on Google only. Now, it also includes what they search for on YouTube. 

Brett and his team have seen single audiences spend $1,000-6,000 per day.

Part Five: Take Video Beyond YouTube with GDM

Use your best YouTube ad and run it on GDM. Use the Responsive Ad builder to create responsive ads. If they accept video on your account, you can run your YouTube ads. 

Part Six: Discovery Ads 

Farewell to Gmail ads because they’re getting fazed out. But Discovery Ads are better. 

Discovery and Gmail Ad CPAs are often 30-50% lower than standard GDN retargeting. 

Your Discovery Ads will show up on YouTube, Gmail, and the Google App.

Part Seven: Conversion Tracking is the New Bidding

You’re trying to train the algorithm, and it can bid better than we ever could. Feed the algorithm micro-conversions and purchases. The goal is to get 35 or more conversions per campaign per week.

What Do You Think?

If you watched this presentation or are familiar with Brett’s work, I want to know what you think. Leave a common or tell us a story below.

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