Considering YouTube bumper ads?
Or wondering if you should?
The easy answer is YES!
Why? Because they must be watched!
In this article, you’ll learn YouTube bumper ads best practices, with examples to inspire your own success.
What are bumper ads on YouTube?
People like short videos and it’s a fact. Let’s take the case of YouTube.
No matter how good a video is, people tend to skip or fast forward it. Approximately 20% of the people who start watching a video will leave after the first 10 seconds. source
If that’s the case of a non-ad video, what about your ads? Do you really think people are watching your ads throughout their entire runtime?
A study says an average person can hold his attention for a mere 10 seconds on an ad video before he skips it or closes the entire page.
How do you please such a tough crowd?
Two words: Bumper Ads!
Bumper ads are those 6 second ads that appear before the main video content.
The most important thing is that you can’t skip through them. Irritating? Not really when they only last for six seconds!
When do YouTube bumper ads run?
I bet you’ve seen a bumper ad without realizing what it was. It was that quick snippet of video that played before the video you actually wanted to watch.
Bumper ads don’t have that “Skip this ad” button you see on longer ads.
And bumper ads can appear on almost any type of YouTube video.
Why use bumper ads?
But why would you pick them as an ad option?
Six seconds might not seem a long time, but they’ve been shown to work.
Let’s compare them to normal ads. People get ad blindness to those sidebar ads. Or the ones appearing in between other types of content.
We get used to ignoring those ads.
But with bumper ads, we have to watch them to get the content we want. There’s motivation to take a little notice – even if it’s just so we don’t miss the good stuff afterwards!
Google themselves tested it – from 300 campaigns, 9 out of 10 people saw a significant life in ad recall.
In other words, 90% of people remembered what they saw in the bumper ad. Which is way higher than for other types of ads that we usually ignore.
Brand awareness also increases with this type of ad. 70% of them made for a “significant” lift in brand awareness. Normal ads see about a 9% increase.
Bumper ad specs
The specs are pretty straightforward:
- Length: 6 seconds.
- Aspect ratio: native aspect ratio without letter-boxing (4:3, 16:9).
- Max file size: 1 GB.
- Resolution: 640 x 360px or 480 x 360px recommended.
- Device availability: both desktop and mobile.
- Delivery: shown before a YouTube video.
- Frame rate:30 FPS.
- File type: any video file type is accepted. AVI, ASF, Quicktime, Windows Media, MP4 or MPEG.
- Preferred video codec: H.264, MPEG-2 or MPEG-4.
- Preferred audio codec: MP3 or AAC.
How much do YouTube bumper ads cost?
How much ads cost is an important question – but the cost is very variable, so it’s hard to give a set cost.
Bumper ads are charged for every 1,000 impressions. You can set limits for how much you spend per 1,000 impressions, as well as for the whole campaign.
Generally, you can expect to pay $1-4 per thousand views.
But this can vary a lot depending on your industry or target audience.
How to set up the ad
Before you dive into bumper ads, it is worth learning a bit about YouTube ads in general. And particularly their campaigns. This type of ad works really well alongside TrueView ads.
Let’s go through the process of setting up the ad so you know what to do when you are ready.
- Sign into your Google Ads account and click ‘campaigns’
- There’s a blue plus button – select ‘new campaign’
- Select the ‘brand awareness and reach’ goal and select video as the campaign type
- Select ‘bumper’ and enter a campaign name
- Set your budget, choose networks, locations, and other information such as language
- Give the ad group a name and add your target CPM bid
- Where the ‘create your video ad’ section requires a URL, add this, and follow the steps
- Under ‘video ad format’ make sure to select bumper ad
- Enter any information for the URL options
- It is recommended to auto-generate the video’s companion banner or you can upload an image
- Lastly, add the name for the ad, save and continue
The ad is now ready to be reviewed and go live.
7 YouTube bumper ads best practices and tips
Now that you’re ready with your video ad idea, it is time to get some best practices to fine tune that campaign.
1 | Focus on one objective
Because the bumper ad is so short, you need to laser focus on what you want from it.
That means being very focused on one objective.
Let’s say you are selling a new model of a smartphone. You could focus on one of the standout features of the device such as the camera or the screen resolution.
Or if you were advertising a new clothing range, focus on the dress that’s already the best seller. Talk about why people are loving it.
2 | Keep it simple
That short duration means you also want to keep the ad simple.
Don’t try to have loads of texts, cut scenes, tons of visuals, and lots happening. That will just overwhelm people.
Keep the message simple and the visuals very relevant.
Example ad: Amazon’s 2-hour delivery
This bumper ad from Amazon is all about their 2-hour delivery service. It focuses on the speed and has an emphasis on cleaning products.
So, you know if you need to clean and suddenly run of something, this is the service you need.
3 | Start with something eye catching
All video tips say to start with something eye catching to keep people watching.
With bumper ads, this might not seem as relevant.
But it’s still worth having something bold and eye catching as the first image. People have to watch the video to get to their chosen content – but they don’t have to take any notice.
Make sure you’re front loading the ad with something that will ensure they actually pay attention!
Example ad: Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus
This ad starts with really bold colors and an image of the phone. As soon as you see it, you know what it’s for.
It highlights a single important feature then has a simple call to action to ‘pre-book now’ to get yours
4 | Custom create it for the length
It might be tempting to try and cut down a 15 or 30 second ad to make a bumper ad.
Don’t – it doesn’t work.
Instead, create one from scratch that focuses on the time and makes the most of it.
That way you have a better chance of achieving your ad goals.
Example ad: Jason Bourne teaser
Rather than try to cut down the full-length trailer, this film’s marketing team made a specific bumper ad. They took a couple of second long shots from the film with text screens for dramatic effect.
5 | Use the targeting features fully
As with all Google Ads, there are tons of targeting options.
But focus on the two main ones – demographics and interests.
Demographics lets you choose things like:
- Parental status (if they have kids or not)
There are also more detailed demographics that cover things like marital status, homeowner status and education.
Another feature to consider is the ‘what they are actively researching or planning’ which lets you choose audiences by what they are searching for.
Say you have a new DIY product. You can target people actively searching for how to carry out work that your product would be ideal for.
Don’t be afraid to get pretty specific with targeting – you can always change it based on the data you get.
6 | Make use of retargeting
Retargeting lets you target people who have some previous interaction with your brand or website.
This can be things like visiting the website or joining your email list.
With YouTube, you can remarket to people who have watched your channel, commented, or even watched a video ad.
That means you can focus bumper ads to reinforce your brand.
Be a little broader on your targeting with this type of ads for best results.
7 | Run them alongside TrueView Ads
YouTube also recommends running bumper ads alongside TrueView Ads. These are skippable but longer – up to 30 seconds.
For instance, if someone watches a 30 second ad, they are worth following up with a bumper ad. This can reinforce that brand awareness.
Or you can use bumper ads as a teaser, then longer ads to give more information.
Example ad: KFC unboxing teaser
A very dramatic example of a teaser bumper ad that then was followed up with a longer one. This ad showed a new product from KFC and highlighted the date that the full unboxing would happen.
A great ad format to try
Bumper ads are a great video ad format to try.
They can have a huge impact – without irritating viewers the way longer ads can.
They’re unskippable – so people have to watch them, and ad blindness is less damaging to this style of ad.
All you need to know is summed up in the infographic below from Techwyse. Pin it to Pinterest and let it be your guide to a successful YouTube Bumper Ad campaign.
Have you ever tried bumper ads? What kind of results did you see?