Here are YouTube's best practices for advertising material:
- The first 5 seconds law - The first 5 seconds of the video are highly important and their goal is to make the users keep seeing the video. It needs to be eye-catchy, fast-paced and it's highly recommended to put the USP within those 5 seconds.
- Close-ups - when shooting people it's highly recommended to make a close-up of their faces because this is how the platform works and this is what your audience is looking for.
- Subtitles - Audio is important but there is a big percentage of viewers who would see your videos, like ads, on mute. Therefore, it's highly recommended to add customize subtitles so you could guarantee your message will get to those users that would be in mute mode.
- Video length - An ad should not be too long but you still would probably want to tell a story. It's highly recommended to create video ads of 40-50 seconds max (while the most effective long-video-ad is 10-20 seconds) and another shorter version of 5.59 seconds so we would be able to run them in sequence - First the user will get the longer version and afterward they will get the shorter ones that should be as a quick reminder of the story, the products, and the USP.
- Thumbnail - the image of the video, the thumbnail, is highly important because lots of users use YouTube on the go and sometimes they are having low reception which means it will take a second or two for the video to start running. A good, interesting, eye-catchy, thumbnail could prevent them from skipping the ad
Here are several samples for successful YouTube ads:
- Vat19 - Great thumbnail, great close-ups - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rdL5Diq49CM
- ThinkGeek - Great first 5 seconds with USP in front - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8dHmCmlaQW0
- Purple - Great 5 seconds with USP in front and great use with subtitles - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0SK6lCJFyME
- Fabletics - Hard-sale 15 seconds video - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XC0CLZPVdtQ