Strategies to hook viewer attention in YouTube ads
Share this page
Strategies to hook viewer attention in YouTube adsJune 2022
Attention is the No. 1 driver of high-performing YouTube ads. So how should marketers think about kicking off a compelling narrative to engage viewers? Learn how Ariane Le Port, global creative effectiveness lead at Google, thinks about capturing and sustaining viewers’ attention so they stick around for your whole ad.
Nacia Walsh: Hey, marketers. All you need to create an effective YouTube ad is your ABCDs. If you’re in the midst of creating your next YouTube ad, there are four core principles to keep in mind: A – attention, B – branding, C – connection, and D – direction. YouTube ads that follow these ABCDs have been shown to yield 30% lift in short-term sales likelihood, and 17% lift in long-term brand perception over time.
In this video, we’ll be discussing how to think about capturing and sustaining attention with your YouTube ads with Ariane Le Port, Global Creative Effectiveness Lead at Google. Take it away, Ariane.
Ariane Le Port: Thanks, Nacia! Hey, everybody. I’m Ariane and I’m here to help you think about catching your audience’s attention from the start.
The No. 1 driver of high-performing ads is catching and maintaining viewers’ attention. And the first five seconds are especially important when you consider how much content we have to choose from online. The best YouTube ads break through the noise of the digital landscape by telling compelling stories. People process the world through a narrative, so good stories matter. Along with your captivating story, you can rely on other techniques like exciting audio and visuals. Voices, sound effects, and exaggerated reactions make stories more interesting. Imagine you’re telling a story to your family and friends. The more you lean into it, the more attention-grabbing it will be.
Simply put, a compelling creative is an essential component of an effective YouTube campaign.
So let’s talk about a few of the key ingredients for creating effective YouTube ads that help lock in a viewer’s attention. No. 1: Jump in. Getting to the heart of the story immediately sparks interest. You can do this by focusing on the subject, whether that’s a product or a person, and then introducing a variety of interesting shots. Tight framing and quick pacing can help keep viewers engaged as well.
One way to do this is by using a heartbeat narrative structure, which starts with a dramatic moment and then continues to deliver multiple peaks, like shifts in camera perspective for any surprises or interesting brand cues. Populating your story with a variety of twists keeps your audience on their toes and engaged.
Moving on to No. 2: Support your ad storyline with audio and text. 95% of videos watched on YouTube are played with sound on, so don’t shy away from being smart about your audio. Audio naturally complements and reinforces what’s happening on screen. You can immediately strike an emotional chord with viewers, whether you choose music, dialogue, or sound effects.
Plus, mixing in on-screen text can increase ad resonance. When viewers see and hear something, the impact is much greater. See? It works, doesn’t it?
And finally, No. 3: Use bright, high-contrast visuals. Over 70% of watch time happens on mobile devices, which means you should be building your ads for mobile viewing. Tighter framing, faster pacing, large text, brightness, and high contrast will go a long way to make sure your ad is visible and engaging on the smallest of screens.
So there you have it. When it comes to concepting and creating effective YouTube ads, the first step is to grab your viewers’ attention from the start, and then don’t let go. Tell a captivating story with exciting audio and visuals to sustain people’s attention and so they stick around for your whole message.
I hope that helps clarify how you can think about hooking and sustaining your audience’s attention with your YouTube ads. Thank you so much. And back to you, Nacia.
Nacia: Thanks so much for that, Ariane. So let’s do a quick recap. We discussed the recipe for creating effective YouTube ads that catch and maintain your audience’s attention: Jump right into the action; amplify your story with audio and text; and use bright, high-contrast visuals.
Well, that’s it for this “How to think about” video. Check out our other videos to learn more about the other three principles for creating great YouTube ads. And remember to subscribe to our channel so you don’t miss the latest insights.
Thanks for joining, and see you next time.
Others are viewing
Marketers who view this are also viewing
YouTube trends: Unusual, new storytelling formats that viewers are loving right now
3 trends in video culture that signal bigger shifts
Visual StoryVisual Story
What makes content good?
The AI Handbook: Resources and tools to help marketers get started
What marketers can learn from the most powerful YouTube trends of 2022
YouTube advertisers, focus on these 4 key drivers of ROI
Secrets behind 3 of the most-watched YouTube ads
How AI helps video marketers move at the speed of culture