Video Enhances PPC Marketing

Can Video Enhance Your Internet Marketing Program?

Since the adoption of video by sites such as YouTube, marketing managers have said video advertising is good method to generate brand awareness and improve advertising results. But the proof was always allusive.

Some recent marketing results delivers an unqualified answer.  Per one recent study that began in 2018, an airline, ran a campaign using video and search advertising. Google Search ads helped get the airline’s name in front of people and follow-up YouTube video ads drove them to make incremental purchases.

The Airlines YouTube Analytics Data, June 2018.  The results speak volumes. Thanks to the month-long campaign, the Airlines increased flight bookings by 185%, while reducing cost per acquisition by 69% compared to other campaigns run concurrently.

How the results were built and verified is the real story.  In preparation for the busy summer travel period, the airline wanted to follow up with people in Los Angeles and the Northern California Bay Area who were considering visits to Hawaii. While in the past it has always relied on search ads to push customers to book flights, this time the airline took a cross-channel approach. It used search ads as the first point in a conversation with the aspiring traveler, aiming to build awareness, and then followed up with a video push.

To do that, the marketing team set up a typical search campaign, focusing on branded keywords like “Hawaiian Airlines” and nonbranded keywords like “Flight to Hawaii.” Then it created a set of 15-second and 30-second video ads using the company’s market-specific brand creative and YouTube’s direct-response format, TrueView for action. The call to action in the direct-response format invited people to click-through to “See Fares,” where they were directed to a landing page of flight and pricing options relevant to their area.

To identify the right audience for the video campaign, Hawaiian Airlines turned to the data from its search campaign. Using a new tool from YouTube, the team looked at the keywords that had worked best on search and then brought those over to YouTube. That meant the video ads were only served to people who had already shown an interest in the brand or traveling to Hawaii.

The campaign has made Hawaiian Airlines reconsider the role video ads play in its direct-response marketing pushes. “Combining a qualified audience from search with the targeted reach of YouTube lets us make our video buy more efficient.”

How Does this apply to other businesses?  For many brands, direct response is not top of mind when creating digital video campaigns. Here are a few lessons to consider when thinking about your own direct-response video campaign.

Use a smart call to action. Develop a call to action and landing page that align with your creative and marketing goals. This doesn’t need to be language that promotes buying right away, like “Buy Now” or “Book Now.” Instead, use softer language like “Shop Now” or “View Details” to your site.

Test direct-response formats against regular formats. It’s hard to know if your campaign is working unless you have a control group to compare it against. We suggest running two or more campaigns simultaneously, one with a direct-response format, like TrueView for action, and one or more with regular formats and audience targeting, to see which performs better.

Next use Smart bidding to target cost per acquisition.  By optimizing for conversions, marketers can ensure they’re cost-efficiently driving action while still increasing brand awareness.

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