By Joe Martinez
I like to use video campaigns in Google Ads to build awareness for new users in a target audience and guide those users further down the path of the buyer’s journey. The call-to-action extensions can be a great asset in helping PPC advertisers drive more traffic to their website and landing pages.
These newer extensions are available for any video ad using the TrueView in stream model. Here, I’ll show you why call-to-action extensions are important, how to set them up, and strategies to use for your video campaigns so that you can start driving more traffic.
Why are YouTube CTA extensions important?
Back in December of 2018, Google announced call-to-action extensions were coming to advertisers’ video campaigns within Google Ads. The biggest impact this announcement had on marketers running YouTube ads is this change also meant the sunset of the long-running call-to-action overlays. Call-to-action overlays were the original interactive elements that appeared on our YouTube ads and helped drive traffic to our websites and landing pages.
Call-to-action overlay example courtesy of Google
Shortly after the call-to-action extensions were announced, advertisers found out they were not able to edit their original call-to-action overlays anymore. And then just a little while after not being able to edit the overlays, Google Ads removed the overlays from advertisers’ accounts. For any PPC marketer trying to drive traffic from their video campaigns, the sunset of the overlays meant we were all forced to use the new call-to-action extension.
Setting up your call-to-action extensions
When you are in an ad group from one of your video campaigns, you can either create a new video ad or edit an existing video ad. You just have to remember the new call-to-action extensions are only applicable to TrueView in-stream video ads. After you have selected the video from YouTube that you would like to use as the ad, enter in your final and display URLs. Then, you will see a small (and optional) “Call-to-Action” checkbox.
This is the exact location where you can enter in the call to action, as well as the extension headline for your video ad. This part can be a little tricky just due to the character lengths we are given. Just like the original overlays we used to have, these call-to-action fields are only 10 characters (including spaces). The headline field is only 15 characters (also including spaces).
My advice? Keep your messages short and to the point. What is your main value message? What action do you want the viewer to do next? You want to make these as clear as possible before the user has the chance to skip the ad.
And, before you get started, make sure to preview what the call-to-action extension will look like while the ad is running.
Key to CTA extension success: Test, test, test!
I have audited many Google Ads video campaigns. I frequently see one common issue in many of these accounts: …read more
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