A full funnel test and learn strategy

To do so, the team created a scrappy YouTube campaign featuring footage of B&H employees helping customers troubleshoot and make purchase decisions while working from home themselves. From there, they used Video experiments to test and learn which ad formats were best for driving awareness and conversion goals.

While B&H saw a positive return on spend across all four formats it tested, the TrueView for action format, incorporating prominent calls to action (CTA) to encourage conversions, had the highest return. It also delivered above-industry benchmark lifts in brand awareness and ad recall — 67% and 65%, respectively — proving a performance-focused campaign can also have a positive impact on brand metrics.

Find your best customers

Compelling video ads can help set you up for success, but to succeed, your campaigns need to reach the right people. Reevaluating your audience strategy to make sure your campaign leverages audience interests and intent signals can be an easy way to learn more about your customers and improve results.

Early this year, a company called Honey, whose browser extension aggregates and applies online coupons, did some experimenting to gain a better understanding of which potential customers were likely to download its product.

Honey used TrueView for action along with target CPA bidding, an automated bidding solution that helps to find and serve the ad to audiences who are most likely to convert. First the team tested how ads performed across thousands of audience segments related to passion points and popular search topics. Then they built videos with messaging aligned with some of their top performing audiences, like people interested in tech.

“We found that using a variety of concepts and messaging resonates with different people. Some of our most successful audiences are around interests like tech, so we built videos around this theme in order to scale and be more relevant,” said Arielle Jessel, Honey’s director of growth.

The company applied these learnings to the creative strategy for its next video campaign, geared toward helping global expansion. Overall, between April and July, Honey gained nearly 3X the number of net new active users they saw between January and March.

Use creative as a lever for impact

One final campaign optimization approach to consider is experimenting with simple adjustments to video creative. Even subtle changes, such as adding a text overlay or a strong CTA, can help further your goals.

Cosmetics brand Mac has a powerful example of this. Drawing on insights they gathered from YouTube search data, the marketing team developed Mac’s first-ever tutorial-based video campaign to drive purchase intent around featured products. Key to their approach was experimenting with different variations of video creative to determine which had the greatest impact on purchase intent.

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