Important tricks and features you need to know about YouTube Video Ads

Continuing the battle of video marketing between YouTube and Facebook(internal link), we would like to spend some time to share the concepts and types of format of YouTube video ads. YouTube is the second largest search engine right behind Google, with 4 billion video views per day. YouTube is popular because of its video appeal and the variety of video it contains. For marketers, YouTube is a great platform to promote a brand and create exposure.   

Three main video ads formats are available on YouTube platform.

Youtube Ads Type

Source: Beginner’s Guide to YouTube Advertising

TrueView In-stream Ads: The ads that pop out when you’re watching your YouTube videos.
In-stream ad is the most common video ads format on YouTube. In-stream ads play your ad before, during, or at the end of the video from a YouTube partner. Typically, in-stream ads appear before the video, viewers are required to watch the ads for at least 5 seconds, and then they can decide to keep watching or skip the ad.

Since most of the viewers are likely to opt-out the ads after five seconds the in-stream ads only charge advertisers if the viewers watch the entirety of the ad- saving companies a lot of the budget typically wasted on viewers who weren’t interested.

In-stream ads are a good tool for contextual targeting and interesting targeting, because the ads show up right in front of the video viewers specifically search for. For example, if you were sports equipment retailers, it would be effective to show your ad to those viewers who watch NBA recap.  


In-search ads: Ads appear at the top right corner of video results page

In-search videos ads work similar to text ads in Google search, with advertisers bidding on keyword terms. However, the YouTube advertising market is less saturated compared to Google search. It allows advertisers to get popular keyword terms on a lower budget and with less competition If advertisers take advantage of this and secure the popular keywords, their video ads can reach more viewers. Again, advertisers only pay when viewers watch the ads.  


In-display Ads: Appears to the right of the feature video and above the video suggestions list.

In-display video ads appear in search results, related videos, watch pages and Google Display Network sites as a thumbnail image and promotional text that match advertisers’ targeting options. The concept behind this format is “if you liked that video, you’ll absolutely love…” If viewers did not click the ads, advertisers don’t pay. The difference between in-stream and in-display ads is that in-display ads are not mandatorily force viewers to watch, they sit subtly in the sidebar and try to seduce people to click on it.



YouTube offers more video ads format for advertisers to optimize their exposure. While YouTube cannot match Facebook’s specificity at targeting, YouTube compensated advertisers by contextually targeting, aiming at using channel categories like fashion or do-it-yourself to reach potential viewers.

Another huge pro of YouTube is the “skippable” feature. Unlike Facebook charges advertisers after a video has automatically played for three seconds.

YouTube’s advertisers are only charged under the circumstances that viewers view over 30 seconds or the entire ads, resulting in a more accurate cost per view.


Ready to jump on the YouTube ad train? Contact us to set up a consultation.

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