t’s no secret that online advertising is the fastest growing medium. In fact, Zenith Optimedia estimates in 2013 online ad spend passed $500 billion for the first time, around 21% of total ad spend. But how powerful is video marketing really? Consider these stats:
- Viewers retain 95% of video messages as opposed to only 10% when reading it. (source: Invisia)
- Online video was the fastest growing advertising medium in 2013. (source: Neilsen Global AdView Pulse Q3 2013)
- Animated explainer videos increase conversion rates by 20% (source: Unbounce)
That is probably why the number of businesses using pre-roll ads to attract website visitors is also growing. We’re partial to explainer videos here at DemoFlick, but animated video or not, pre-roll ads have the highest approval rating of any other kind of ad format, according to a survey results published by Yahoo!
Keep in mind, “highest approval rating” is a relative term — 22% found pre-roll video to be the “more acceptable” than the other kinds of ads.
What that means is you should be looking at including pre-roll ads in your online marketing plan, but you absolutely need to keep things interesting when you create them. Just because more people find pre-roll ads less annoying than banner ads and wrapped banners does not mean you can stray from your A-game. Research shows that as much as 94% of YouTube’s pre-roll ads are skipped after the first 5 seconds.
So, how do you make an awesome pre-roll ad?
While there is no formula for creativity, there are some things you can keep in mind when producing your pre-roll video that will help you get the most bang for your buck. You only have between 3-5 seconds to capture the interest of your audience so get your message in fast and make it attention-grabbing.
- Address your audience.
- Ask a question.
- Keep the action moving.
- Make it fun and exciting.
- Anticipation is helpful.
- Make a clear, concise and simple call to action.
Here are a few of our favorite examples of YouTube pre-roll ads that had outstanding user engagement and click-through rates.
Skip This Ad
Burger King’s YouTube campaign composed of 64 pre-roll ads tailored to specific YouTube content is definitely interesting.
Office Depot’s animated explainer video uses just 15 seconds to get the point across, and its main message is communicated in the first 2.
This pre-roll ad tells the user to click off of the ad well before the 30-second limit where the advertiser would have to pay for the view.
Eat24 uses its ad like a billboard: one big message that is a directional. That plus a “skip now” call to action and floating hamburgers keeps this ad engaging.
Again, the brand uses the “skip ad” call to action to throw the viewer for a loop and keep them engaged.
Reed.co.uk uses a cheap (but effective) trick to get viewers to watch and click.
Watch this pre-roll ad for an ironic message.