Selecting a Target Audience on YouTube

By Marisol Ledezma

    When starting up a business, advertising may not always be top-of-mind. Mike Rhodes, co-author of Ultimate Guide to Google AdWords, says that YouTube’s enormous traffic and cheap pay-per-click rates are two factors that make YouTube an effective method to reach a target audience. Advertising through YouTube is ideal for small businesses on a tight budget because advertisers don’t get charged unless users view at least 30 seconds of the content.

    One of the most important steps when starting a YouTube advertising campaign is identifying a target audience. Without a target audience, the advertisement does not reach the right people at the right time, and therefore isn’t as effective as possible.

    Fortunately, YouTube offers a variety of methods for advertisers to zero in on their target audience. One of these methods is to select your target audience based on demographic groups. This method requires advertisers to choose the age, gender and parental status of the target audience.

    Advertisers can also select their target audience based on the viewer’s past interactions on the advertisers channel or previous videos. This method is effective because brands are able to reinforce their message with people who have already been exposed to your videos. This method is known as “video remarketing”.

    Another targeting method allows advertisers to chose websites, videos, and apps that are part of the Google Display Network to run their ads. This method is known as “managed placements”. In contrast to other targeting methods where ads are placed automatically, manage placements enables advertisers to select managed placements.

    A target audience can also be selected based on specific topics on YouTube. This method is known as “topic targeting”. Topic targeting lets advertisers reach viewers based on the topics of the videos they watched. For example if an advertiser selects the “beauty” topic, then someone watching makeup tutorials would be selected to view the advertiser’s ad.

    The final targeting method is based on words or phrases that are used during a video search on YouTube. When using this method, the ad will only appear when those exact words or phrases are searched on YouTube.

    YouTube’s large selection of targeting methods is one of the reasons why it is an effective tool. Advertisers can find instructions on how to activate these targeting methods by visiting YouTube’s help center here.

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