4 tips to create effective bumper ads on YouTube - Caspian Digital Solutions
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4 Methods of Creative Storytelling in 6 seconds

When YouTube uncloaked the concept of bumper ads in 2016, it wasn’t great news for the creatives who had already settled with a 15- second cut down from a standard 30-second video ad. Now, they were expected to tell a story in an even smaller frame of 6 seconds.

Why did YouTube come up with this change?

The viewing habits of consumers are constantly evolving with technology, posing the biggest challenge for brands as well as platforms such as Google, YouTube and Twitter to change and adapt their formats according to the needs of the viewer. While it is important to create content that makes a lasting impact on the viewers, it is necessary to keep in mind that today’s mobile user expects much more from advertising than we think.

Content is no more limited to a particular medium, place or context. Sometimes you are at home watching television to pass the time, other times you might be seeing a video in a hurry to find something you need. The bumper ads have been designed for such short and crisp sessions when the viewer is on the go. However, it is important to remember that these are not a replacement to your longer ad campaigns.

With the right objectives, planning and creatives, Bumper ads can be a great way to reach your target audience, drive goals such as awareness and ad recall or deliver a succinct message connected to a broader story message over time.

Here are 4 ways to create a bumper ad that is effective and impactful.

Keep a single and focused purpose

Advertisers are tempted to clutter a lot of information in a 30-second ad. They want to include a glimpse of everything — story, tagline, product, brand and CTA. However, with a 6-second bumper ad, you don’t have the time to include everything.

Bumper ads were designed with a purpose to reach audiences at a time when they can only view a crisp and focused message. Based on your campaign, decide the one thing that you would want to communicate to your audience. It is important to understand your target audience and define your objective accordingly. Having a single-minded goal is key to an impactful bumper ad.

Build up a series to tell a broader message

Bumper ads can be a part of the wider media strategy. You can use a series of small bumper ads to connect it to a larger story. Viewing bumpers as a set of four to five ads that are part of a sequence help to focus on a single purpose and set your expectations right.

YouTube’s Bumper ad model of ‘Tease, Amplify, Echo’ is a great way to understand how Bumper ads can be used as a part of the larger plan.

Tease – Bumper ads can be used as a teaser followed by a full-length video at the launch.

Amplify – Run both Bumper and full-length videos together for a greater impact and incremental reach.

Echo – Use the full-length ads to tell the complete story and follow-up with the bumper ads as an ad recall or a product update.

Budget the time and be concise

Both content and context are important while designing the video. Build your story around a single subject or a strong visual that grabs the attention of the viewer without confusing them with too much information.

Such ads leave the audience with a clear perception of the brand or a call-to-action that has been well-settled in their minds. Brevity is important while crafting the message for the ad. Keep it simple, focused and witty. Distil your entire message into a punchline and then move back to build the story.

Get the structure of the ad right

Owing to the difficulty that marketers are facing in creating content that is compelling for the audience, YouTube developed a Playbook for Creative advertising. In the Playbook, YouTube has come up with a set of recommendations to help creative teams conceptualise the video ads.

The guidelines, called ABCD, stand for Attract, Brand, Connect and Direct. Although the guidelines were designed keeping in mind the 30-second ads, they are applicable to the 6-second format, too. Since you only have a timeframe of 6-seconds, you need to attract the viewers from the very start. Secondly, integrate the brand into the video in a meaningful way instead of just using a logo or brand name. Thirdly, connect with your audience at an emotional level, and finally it important to be direct or clear about what you expect the user to do.


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