Video advertising is one of the fastest growing forms of online advertising. In fact, according to eMarketer, total video ad spend is expected to increase by 28.5% within the year. There’s just one issue with video advertising –it has a crazy-high barrier to entry. Advertisers need collateral to promote and lament the idea of actually creating video ads. They require significantly more time, skills and resources than any old text ad, image ad or even an email campaign.
At best, most small, low-budget advertisers end up using an existing tutorials or training videos that aren’t really designed to be advertisements, likely yielding disappointing results. More commonly, they avoid video advertising altogether. If you fall into either of these categories, I’m happy to report that AdWords just rolled out the answer to your prayers. Let me introduce you to YouTube Director for Business, an app that’s even cooler than Snapchat and Tinder combined (at least to marketing nerds like yours truly, that is).
This totally free (!!) new app simplifies the video creation process, allowing you to create a professional-caliber video ad in just a few minutes. I’m not joking – it literally spoon-feeds the video creation process to you.
The only real decision you have to make is what type of story you want to showcase. Even this selection process is easy! The app organizes templates by genre (a la Netflix) for those that have a story-type in mind. If you don’t, just head to the “By Business” tab to see video styles that were developed specifically for your vertical.
For each template option, the app will give you a quick overview of the intended mission of the video and give you the opportunity to watch an example created by the crew at YouTube. It also tells you what you need to do to prepare for the shoot. You’ll learn exactly how many shots the video will require, the number of people you will need to operate the camera or “act” in the ad, whether you need to write a script in advance or not, and approximately how much time the filming will take.
Once you’ve selected your template, the fun begins. Start by reviewing each of the shots you’ll be taking. When you click in to view each shot, the app provides an in-depth explanation of what you should be saying and doing in the shot, along with an animated, cartoon-style example. I recommend walking through each shot ahead of time to prepare a rough script and get a sense for what images will be appearing along with the voiceover.
For our sample video, we elected the “Short Advertisement – Mobile App” template, which Director for Business cautioned would take approximately 30-60 minutes to complete. We started writing out a rough script on a whiteboard, which took about 15 minutes. Once the script was fully drafted, we recorded the audio, which we breezed through in 10 minutes, since we knew exactly what we wanted to say. We then spent about a half hour filming all 8 scenes (but it would have been way shorter if we hadn’t gallivanted all around our office park for the right shots!). Then, to finish off the visuals, we added text to the introductory and CTA shots.
This step-by-step video production was easy and, by the end of the hour, we had a totally cohesive, compelling ad. While reviewing a rough copy, we also discovered that you can add music to play throughout the video. The app’s selection is massive—it’s organized by both genre and mood—so you’re guaranteed to find something that will jive with your content.
Check out our finished product!
While it may not be the fanciest video ad out there, it’s pretty darn impressive for a crew with zero camera operating, acting or script-writing skills, armed with a crappy old iPhone 5C. YouTube Director for Business is the gateway to video ad creation that many small businesses need. Download it today and give it a try for yourself!
Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.