Wait, don’t skip! Best practices for YouTube pre-roll content

Pre-roll content on YouTube is mainly used to raise awareness of a brand or business and partly to drive web traffic. If your target audience, or customers, are regular users of YouTube, creating effective preroll content can be a great platform to promote your brand. Pre-roll content can also be used for lead generation, which is particularly useful if you’re a B2B business looking to increase the number of leads that your digital marketing generates for your sales team. Below we’ve listed some best practice tips for employees when using YouTube pre-roll content.

Get to the point

According to some sources up to 94% of people skip pre-roll adverts after the first six seconds. If this statistic is to be believed, then delivering your message in the first five seconds is key. You need to be clear and concise about the most important message you want to get across to your customers – if you cannot communicate this in five seconds, then give them a reason to keep watching.

Target effectively

YouTube provides detailed targeting options for your pre-roll adverts, so placing content relevant to the different segments of your target audience shouldn’t be too difficult a task. Encouraging viewers to watch your full pre-roll advert will be boosted the more relevant and engaging the advert is to the person watching it, so be sure to consider who you’re targeting your adverts to and track the results of whether your targeting is generating the results you were expecting.

Consider context

If your video is three minutes long, but the video the person has searched for is only 30 seconds, they are going to feel increasingly frustrated that they’re spending more time waiting for your advert to end, than they will be on the content they actually wanted to reach. This could have negative implications for your brand, so considering the reasons your audience are likely to use YouTube in the first place could help you to generate content more appropriate in length.

Keep them wanting more

If you can build curiosity in the first five seconds, you’re more likely to encourage people to watch more of your video. If you can build curiosity right up until the final frame of your video, you’re more likely to engage them in the call to action you want them to take. Creating pre-roll adverts that work in sequence, or that require action from the viewer to go to the next scene, can be a great way to generate leads, or website traffic.

As with all advertising, set yourself measurement goals so that you know when your YouTube pre-roll content has been effective at generating the activity you wanted it to. Be sure to include clear calls to action, if possible within the first five seconds of your video to maximise the number of people who engage with your content.