How To Make the Most Out of Pre-Roll Advertising

Pre-roll advertising has become a popular format in digital marketing, allowing advertisers to reach their target audience quickly and efficiently with impactful video creative. But how can you ensure you get the most out of your pre-roll ad campaigns? Here we’ll go over the basics of pre-roll advertising, from setting up an effective ad strategy to optimizing your creative for maximum impact. We’ll also share best practices to ensure your pre-roll campaigns drive actual results.

Pre-Roll Ads: The Two Types You Need To Know About

Pre-roll advertising costs will vary widely depending on several factors, such as the video ad placement, the type of video ad, the ad’s targeting, and the video’s length. Generally, you can expect the average cost to be $0.02 to $0.09 per view or between $3.00 and $10.00 CPM (cost per thousand impressions). Let’s examine two types of advertising with pre-roll ads and how they work. There are other types of pre-roll ads, such as bumper pre-rolls, but for this article, we’ll be focusing on the two most effective formats. Knowing these types of pre-roll ads and how they work can help you choose the best option for your advertising needs.

Skippable Video Ads

Skippable pre-roll video ads are a great way to reach a broad audience quickly. These ads benefit brands and viewers by allowing viewers to choose whether they want to view the ad or skip it altogether. They typically run for at least 5 seconds before the viewer can click the skip button. This gives the brand a brief time to show its message and establish brand recognition with its target audience.

Non-Skippable Video Ads

These ads have higher completion rates than skippable ads due to their mandatory viewing with no skip option, which makes them more attractive to advertisers who want to guarantee their message is seen. However, non-skippable ads can be less effective in engagement, as viewers may become irritated if forced to watch an entire commercial before their content. Nonetheless, non-skippable video ads are still essential to many pre-roll campaigns. They’re usually placed near the beginning of the ad unit since viewers are most likely to be engaged.

How To Get the Most Out of Your Pre-Roll Advertisement

Pre-roll ads need to follow specific specs and standards to ensure the best viewing experience for your audience. Your ad should use H.264 video compression and the highest resolution available to give yourself the best shot against the competition. 

Let’s take a closer look at video marketing strategy. If you’re not getting the most out of your pre-roll advertisements, the tips below can help ensure your video campaigns are as effective and profitable as possible.

Create a Quality Video That Resonates With Your Ideal Customer

Creating a quality video for your pre-roll advertisement is essential to its success. Without a quality video that resonates with your ideal customer, the advertisement will not reach its full potential. The key to creating a quality video is to ensure that it’s creative, engaging, and eye-catching: 

  • Your message should be short, simple, and easy to understand. Once you have established your message, you can think about the visuals of your pre-roll video. Ensure that the visuals are on brand, high quality, and optimized for all devices (desktop, tablet, and mobile). 
  • The audio should be in sync with the visuals and add something extra to the overall message of the advertisement. Consider using music or voice-overs to enhance the message and create an even more engaging experience for viewers.
  • Consider the audience you’re targeting in your creative. For example, it might make sense to make the tone of your video funny and relatable for one audience, or more serious for another. You want your pre-roll video to resonate with your target audience so they can better connect with your brand. 

Choose the Right Targeting Options

When it comes to pre-roll advertisements, choosing suitable targeting options is essential for getting the most out of your ad campaign. 

Consider the demographics you’d like to target, such as age, gender, income level, and location. These demographic factors can be a good starting point but can also be impersonal and broad, so it’s important to also consider the interests of your ideal customer — what topics are they interested in, who are their role models, and what ways of speaking do they typically use? Advanced audience insights and data science tools can help you understand your target consumer on a more personal level. Once you’ve identified your target audience, you can tailor your ad campaign accordingly.

You can have your video appear on specific channels, websites, or videos with certain tags or titles. This allows you to appropriately present your product or service to catch the attention of those likely to be interested in it at the right time.

Keep Your Video Short and To the Point

The average pre-roll advertisement lasts for just 6-15 seconds, making it vital that you keep your message brief and concise. If you’re aiming to inform viewers about your product or service, explain it clearly and quickly. You can also use this time to create a call to action that encourages people to learn more and take action.

When creating your pre-roll video: 

  • Focus on the core message you want to get across to your audience. 
  • Keep the presentation straightforward and easy to follow. 
  • Ensure that your key points are highlighted.
  • Include a clear call to action.

Remember, you only have a few seconds to capture the attention of your viewers, so make the most of it!

Provide Your Viewers With an Action To Take

To get the most out of your pre-roll advertisement, provide your viewers with an action to take. This will help ensure that they engage with your ad and are more likely to take the next step in the sales funnel. Your action should be appropriate to your ad’s content and audience. You can’t always expect a viewer to take action just because you had a fantastic video. You have to help the buyer get the product or service that will solve their problem by telling them what to do next. Take the extra step and send them to a custom landing page that reassures them that what they’re about to spend money on is what you promised in the ad.

Monitor and Update as Needed

It’s essential to keep an eye on how your pre-roll advertisement is performing. You should check in regularly to ensure you’re getting the most out of your ad. Make sure to look at both the analytics and the engagement your video gets from viewers. However, you should also give your ad time to run, and don’t update it constantly. The algorithm of the platforms you’re using will need time to collect data about who clicks on the ad and who doesn’t so it has enough information to optimize it for your campaign. When a trend is noticeable over 72 hours or more, it may make sense to update.

Pre-Roll Advertising Statistics and Benefits

This type of advertisement has become increasingly popular in recent years, and it’s estimated that advertisers spent $40 billion on video ads in 2021 alone. Here are some significant pre-roll video advertising benefits:

  • Not only are pre-rolls effective, but they are also incredibly efficient. Studies have shown that consumers retain 95% of a company’s message from video clips vs. only about 10% from text ads. Because they target people who have already shown an interest in the content, brands can target only their most relevant audiences and maximize their return on investment.
  • They can be easily tailored to different audiences and formats. Pre-rolls can be tailored to any length, making them perfect for different types of content. According to the AUDIENCEX Q4 Performance Marketer’s Guide, 60% of consumers are more likely to remember an ad relevant to the context in which it was shown. They can also be adapted to various video platforms, ensuring your message reaches the right people regardless of where they are watching.
  • Pre-roll ads offer a unique opportunity to engage with viewers in a personal way. With features like interactive elements, dynamic creative optimization, and advanced targeting options, brands can deliver ads tailored to their viewers, ensuring that they get the most out of every ad view.

The combination of high effectiveness, efficiency, and personalization makes pre-roll advertising one of the most powerful digital marketing strategies. With so many benefits and statistics showing that pre-rolls are a powerful tool for engaging audiences, it’s no wonder why more and more brands are turning to this form of advertising.

The Biggest Obstacles When It Comes to Video Advertisements

There are, however, some significant obstacles that marketers need to be aware of when it comes to video advertising:

  • One of the biggest obstacles is simply getting viewers to watch a skippable ad. Since most viewers can skip past the ad within a few seconds, getting them to engage and take in the message can be difficult. This is why it’s crucial to have a well-crafted ad that grabs the viewer’s attention right away and quickly communicates your message.
  • Another obstacle is cost. Video advertising can be expensive, as it typically requires higher production costs than other forms of advertising. Additionally, you may have to pay for each view if you’re using a non-skippable ad or purchasing an entire campaign at once.
  • Finally, there is the issue of targeting. While video advertising gives you access to larger audiences, it’s essential to narrow down your target audience to those most likely to engage with the ad and convert. Without proper targeting, you could burn a lot of impressions that never lead to conversions.

It’s essential to be aware of the obstacles that come with it, such as getting viewers to watch, managing costs, and proper targeting. But, with the right strategy or digital advertising partner, you can still make the most out of pre-roll advertising.

Advertising continues to change as technology advances. A few key trends can help marketers stay ahead of the curve:

  1. Increased Personalization: Video advertisements are becoming more personalized with AI and machine learning technologies. This allows ads to be tailored to specific target audiences and provides better insights to create successful campaigns with less ad spend.
  2. Higher-Quality Ads: Consumers today expect higher-quality visuals regarding video advertisements. Businesses must deliver more sophisticated and aesthetically pleasing ads to people to stand out from the competition.
  3. More Interactive Ads: Interactive video advertisements are becoming increasingly popular as they provide viewers with an engaging experience. These ads can include features such as gamification or quizzes, which allow viewers to become part of the ad itself.
  4. Increased Focus on Mobile: With more people consuming content on mobile devices, marketers need to ensure that their video advertisements are optimized for mobile viewing. This includes using portrait in addition to landscape format for ads and making sure the audio is clear and easy to hear.

By keeping up with these video advertising trends, marketers can ensure that their ads remain relevant and engaging for viewers. With these trends in mind, businesses can create videos to help them reach their desired audience and increase their conversion rate.

How To Incorporate Pre-Roll Ads Into Your Strategy

Pre-roll ads are an effective way to reach your target audience, so it’s essential to know how to incorporate them into your overall marketing strategy:

  1. Know your audience: Before creating your ad, make sure that you understand who you’re trying to reach. You can create an ad that speaks directly to that demographic.
  2. Choose the right platforms: One of the most popular platforms for pre-roll advertising is YouTube, but other video hosting websites may be better suited to your needs. Consider all the available platforms and choose the one that makes the most sense for your campaign.
  3. Optimize your content: Ensure your ad is engaging, entertaining, and informative. Include a clear call-to-action and ensure the content matches the tone and style of the platform.
  4. Measure success: Keep track of your ad’s performance so that you can make adjustments if needed. Look at key metrics such as click-through, view, conversion, and completion rates.

Whether you want to launch a new ad campaign or need help managing or scaling an existing one, our team is ready to help you achieve success. So if you’re looking for a trusted partner who can help you simplify your digital advertising strategy, let’s talk about how we can help you reach your campaign goals.

We have fully integrated teams specializing in strategy, media planning and buying, creative, data science, and more, all empowered with access to our holistic tech stack. With seamless omnichannel media access and solutions for optimization, audience modeling, futureproof targeting, in-depth analytics and insights, and tech-driven creative, we’re equipped with the tools and strategic expertise to achieve more meaningful results for any campaign.