What Are Bumper Video Ads?

When exploring some of the different video ad formats supported by YouTube — available through the Google Ads platform — you’ll probably come across “bumper ads”.  Originally launched in 2016, bumpers have become an increasingly popular video ad format.  But, are they are a smart investment for your company’s digital marketing strategy?  In this post, we’re going to take a closer look at bumper video ads,  how they work and why they are the preferred ad format among so many companies.

Overview of Bumper Video Ads

Bumper video ads are short six-second ads that play automatically before the main video. Unlike many other video ad formats, bumper video ads can’t be skipped. If a YouTube user wants to watch the main video they must first watch the bumper video ad.

Because they are only six seconds long, you might be inclined to disregard a strategy of using bumper video ads for your company.   After all, how are you supposed to convey a marketing message in such a short period of time? While six seconds is undoubtedly short, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

Internet users today have shorter attention spans than they did in the past. According to a recent study conducted by Microsoft, the average internet user’s attention span is just eight seconds. To put that number into perspective, the average internet user’s attention span was 12 seconds back in 2000. With shorter attention spans, long video ads don’t always yield positive results. Using bumper video ads, however, you can keep viewers engaged and expose more users  to your marketing message.

Which Devices Are Bumper Video Ads Available For?

YouTube users on all devices, including mobile and desktop, may see your bumper video ads.  When you create a bumper video ad in Google Ads, you’ll have the option of targeting specific users on a variety of criteria, some of which includes age, gender, income and interests. Alternatively, you can target specific videos or channels.

Furthermore, Google Ads allows you to target specific devices like computers, smartphones, tablets and streaming media devices like Google Chromecast and Amazon Fire Stick. The key thing to remember is that you need to target your company’s specific audience.  Otherwise, neither bumper video ads nor any other ad format will yield positive results.

Benefits of Using Bumper Video Ads

So, why should you use bumper video ads? For starters, they can help you achieve a more recognizable brand. In 2017, Google conducted a study to investigate the degree to which bumper video ads increased brand lift for companies. The Mountain View-based search engine found that bumper video ads increased brand lift for companies by 9% on average.

Because they’re short, bumper video ads can be less expensive to create than other, longer video ad formats. But as you can imagine, developing a short and effective ad can be even more challenging than developing a longer message.  With the help of a professional video design agency, you can create highly effective bumper video ads that drive sales for your company.

Of course, bumper video ads are also highly measurable.  You’ll be able to track key performance indicators (KPIs) like views, view rate, average cost per view (CPV), watch time and average watch time per impression. Using this data, you can then optimize your bumper video ads to perform even better.

Tips on Using Bumper Video Ads

To maximize the performance of your bumper ads, consider the following tips:

  • Display your company’s name at least once.
  • Use bright colors to attract viewers’ attention.
  • Include a call to action (CTA) at the end of the bumper video ad.
  • Focus on a single message. With just six seconds, you don’t have the luxury of covering multiple points.
  • Include sound and/or narration to further convey the message
  • Create compelling content that piques the interest of your target audience.
  • Split test multiple variants to determine which type of bumper video ads work best.
  • Think With Google recommends creating a series of bumper video ads rather than just a single bumper video ad.
  • Don’t forget to adjust your CPM bids as needed.

Bumper video ads are just one of a half-dozen video ad formats supported by YouTube. Because they’re short and non-skippable  they are highly effective when used for promotional purposes. Whether you’re looking to promote a specific product or service — or if you’re simply trying to increase your company’s brand recognition — you should consider investing in bumper video ads.

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