How To Create A Winning Video Ad: The Complete Step By Step Guide!
You’ve probably heard the rumors:
Facebook will be mostly video in 2017, according to Facebook’s head of ad product Ted Zagat (Variety)
63% of people are more likely to buy a product after watching a video about it (ComScore)
Videos are shared 1200% more times than links and text combined (Simply Measured)
Epic video stat after epic video stat is storming around the interwebs!
Whether you’re selling online courses, yoga mats or coaching services…using video not only in your content marketing, but as part of your paid advertising strategy, is a pretty dang good idea!
But maybe you’re wondering:
“How should I get started with video ads?
Doesn’t this take a lot of work?
Do I have to be featured in my own video?
Can I just make this trend go away ‘cause it-all-seems-like-way-too-much-work-and-I-already-have-waaaaay-too-much-on-my-plate-anyway?”
Well, for the latter… we’re afraid that’s a NO, ‘cause video isn’t going anywhere!
And, as we are seeing some amazing results with video ads, we surely hope that you won’t pass by on this AMAZING opportunity to get more traffic, leads and sales!
Here’s an example:
Like what you see? Yep, that’s a pretty sweet cost per lead!
So what can we say?
Video ads convert, period.
If you’re not convinced yet, make sure to watch the video at the top of this post for even more reasons to get started with video ads ASAP!
In today’s post I will walk you through the first 4 of 5 essential steps to building your first video ad campaign:
- Define The Purpose Of Your Video Ad
- Write Your Script
- Choose Your Video Format
- Create Your Video
- Build Your Campaign
But, of course we’re not going to leave you hanging there!
To fill you in on the last step we’re holding an exclusive webinar next week, in which we’ll also share some other advanced advertising strategies you won’t want to miss.
When you sign up by clicking the banner below you will also get INSTANT ACCESS to our Ultimate Guide To Building Facebook And Youtube Video Ad Campaigns PDF!
(It’s 100% FREE).
Step 1: Define The Purpose Of Your Video Ad
Of course when we say yes, hop on board the video trend, we don’t mean “blindlessly follow the herd just ’cause everyone is doing it”!
That’s never a good idea! As with any marketing or advertising campaign, you have to think of why you’re doing it in the first place.
When you’re spending your precious ad dollars, you better make sure to have a clear strategy and plan of attack.
So, you saw this one coming… tell me, what IS your goal? (or better yet, write it down!)
For example, do you want to:
- grow your email list?
- get more sales?
- get more video views?
- get more likes on your Facebook page?
- get more subscribers on your Youtube channel?
And, maybe redundant (but maybe not): why oh why?
When you set up a new campaign, it’s best to always start with your end goal in mind!
If you’re very clear on your goals, you can make your video ad THAT much more specific.
And, it will help you prepare for the next step: creating a highly converting video ad script!
Step 2: Script It Out
If you’re anything like… well, a human being, you’re probably familiar with the term “writers block”!
Nothing is more frustrating than staring at a blank page for hours trying to come up with the perfect script for your video ad.
That’s why it’s a good idea to always use a script writing framework for your video ads.
Not only is such a framework a great way to cure writers block, it will also help you to make sure that EACH single word you use in your video ad is designed to convert.
The formula we use to write our video ads is based on a copywriting method that’s been around for eons.
But, we’ve created a special translation just for video ads!
We call it: AIDCA, which stands for:
- Grab Attention
- Build Interest
- Cultivate Desire
- Create Conviction
- Add a Call To Action
With this formula you’re going to to take your viewer through a journey, with the intent of priming them for that Call to Action at the end.
The easiest way to get started with this framework is to simply create 1 line of text, for each phase.
If you really want to add more later, you CAN of course. But, keeping your message focused and condensed is often incredibly effective.
Here’s an example script that we’ve used for one of our own case studies. We’ve used this script in a split test for the Digital Marketer blog.
And, to find out more about the surprising results of that test, keep reading!
“Struggling to make your videos look pro?
There’s a new method that makes it easy
This FREE report shows you exactly how
79,894 people have already tried it
Click link at the end for your free copy”
Let’s now look at each line separately to see how we’ve implemented the AIDCA formula.
#1. Grab Attention
Starting with a question is always a great way to grab attention.
“But, not just any question will do, right?” I hear you ask!
Well no! Your question has the goal to get your ideal customer to identify him/herself with a specific problem or desire.
And very importantly… on how it makes them feel!
If they identify with this feeling (in this example “struggling” with video editing) they will likely keep watching to find out what else you have to say about it.
If they don’t feel it describes them, they won’t keep watching! And that’s fine too, ‘cause you only want your ideal customer to click through anyway.
#2. Build Interest
If you’ve gotten people to that “hey that’s me!” point you have a great head start.
Now it’s time to make them curious, to build their interest, so that they keep watching the video.
You could also call this the teasing phase! In this part of the script, you’re hinting at your solution by creating an open loop. You’re painting a picture for viewers that it is indeed possible to get rid of that problem or struggle.
But, you’re not revealing the actual solution just yet!
Again, you want to make sure they keep watching the video to get closure on what that new thing is you’re mentioning.
#3. Cultivate Desire
How do you make someone really REALLY want what you have?
Well, the word “free” definitely helps! And in this case, the words “exactly how” are also pretty powerful. How-to guides are always very popular as they solve very specific problems for people.
You can create desire by focusing on a specific benefit of your product, or on how it’s different from the alternatives out there.
#4. Create Conviction
Nothing beats social proof baby!
If 79,894 people have tried your “new method”, then by all means don’t forget to mention that!
With the focus on IF… cause if it’s NOT true, then by all means don’t make it up just to impress people.
Always be honest! If you have no social proof yet (because you’re just getting started) then there are still tons of other ways to create conviction.
In Dr. Robert Cialdini’s book Influence, you’ll find a lot more “psychological triggers” that you can use to convince people to check out your offer: reciprocity, commitment (and consistency), social proof, liking, authority and scarcity.
For example, if you’re running a temporary promotion, you could use the scarcity trigger and mention how your offer will only be available for the next 3 days!
…. and then of course, stick to that! Integrity is awesome, and always wins in the long haul.
#5. Add a Call To Action
And then it’s finally time for some action!
That’s what it’s all about isn’t it? That good old click! (at least, most of the time)
As advertisers we sometimes make the mistake to think that people somehow already know where and when to click. Guess what, often times they don’t!
And even if they do, it’s still a good practise to confirm once again which action you want them to take.
If someone is still watching your video after the first 4 lines, and hasn’t browsed down their newsfeed to click on cat videos, this means they’re quite likely to take the next action.
All that is left now is to tell them to do just that. That’s it!
Feel free to steal this script and modify it to your liking! (with the emphasis on modify, as there’s no such thing as a script that works for everyone).
Want more examples? Make sure you don’t miss out on our new live training next week!
Step 3: Choose Your Video Format
Now that you know the purpose of your video, ánd you’ve totally nailed your script… it’s time to start thinking about video creation!
And, for your video format, you have a lot more options than you might think.
Let’s go through the 3 main options right now.
#1. A Talking Head Video Ad
A talking head video is exactly what it says: a video of your head…talking!
Talking head video ads can be incredibly powerful as they are simply the most personal.
Being the face of your brand and recording yourself on video can help you to quickly build trust and genuine relationships with your (potential) customers.
At the same time you might have your reasons NOT to go this route, whether it’s a (temporary) lack of time, lack of money to invest in gear or simply because video is not your thing.
Trends come and go…. and you should always stick to your own gut feeling about what your strengths are and what is right for your business.
At the same time you shouldn’t postpone recording yourself simply because it’s scary, ’cause we all have to start somewhere!
If you’re wondering if you should do a talking head video ad, consider if you want video (as in “being in your own videos”) to become an essential part of your brand or not. If you do, it’s better to start sooner than later!
If you don’t, no worries, because there are 2 other less time intensive options that can get you amazing results as well.
#2. A Slideshow
Oh, the good old slide show!
This type of video ad can be as simple as a bunch of images in a row, optionally including text or other graphics.
The benefit of creating your own slideshow ad is that it is obviously less time intensive than a talking head video ad, as you don’t have to deal with buying and managing gear (lighting, cameras and microphones) and recording yourself on video.
When you create it yourself, you can also be very flexible and tweak the ad to make it just right for your business.
A drawback of this method is that a slideshow can be a little stiff or boring, compared to a talking head or a video with animated text.
If the thought of messing around with graphics and presentation software doesn’t sound like fun to you, the 3rd option is likely your best bet!
3. A Video Template
At Veeroll we make video templates. We have an awesome collection of video ad templates that our members can choose from to create their own video ads in a couple of minutes. And, new ones are constantly being added.
Here you can see an example of one of our templates in action:
Using video templates is a great option for you if you recognize any of the following:
You’re running your own business and are already way too busy.
You’re not yet at the stage of hiring your own video or branding team that can make videos for you.
Spending days editing your own videos doesn’t sound like jolly good fun to you.
You simply want to get high converting video ads up and running QUICKLY.
You believe in The Pareto Principle (also known as the 80/20 rule) and know that it’s best to spend your time on more important stuff than video editing.
To get started with a FREE account, simply CLICK HERE and try it for yourself!
Which video ad format is right for you?
I hear you thinking, that’s all nice and well… but seriously…what option should I choose?
Well, if you’re still not sure, here’s a fancy flowchart for you to help you decide:
Step 4: Create Your Video
In this step I will talk about the basics you need to get started with each video ad format.
#1. A Talking Head Video Ad
If you have a smartphone (that’s less than 3 years old) you can simply use that to record your video. In case you want to turn the quality up a notch, we recommend using the Logitech C930E webcam.
Ironically, one of the most important things about recording professional videos is the audio quality! To get a good sounding audio clip we recommend the Blue Yeti or Rode Podcaster USB mic.
For your background a simple white wall can do the trick, but you can also buy a backdrop for a more playful or interesting look. In the example below Gideon is simply using a brick wall backdrop!
If you can get your hands on some professional lighting that’s great, but it’s NOT absolutely necessary. You can also use the lamps from your home office, or better yet: some good daylight!
Just make sure you avoid direct sunlight as this can overexpose your video and create nasty shadows.
To record and edit the video we wholeheartedly recommend Screenflow for Mac, a very easy to use video editing tool. For Windows there’s a similar option called Camtasia.
And last but not least, what you mostly need for a talking head video ad is: time!
Depending on your experience with video recording, you’ll need time to set up your gear, time to practise, time to record (and rerecord) and of course… time to edit the video.
#2. A Slideshow
To create a video ad with slides you will need the right software. There are lots of programs out there, of which Keynote for Mac and Powerpoint for Windows are the most popular. Optionally you can also create your slides in an app like Screenfow, which I’ve also mentioned in option 1.
You can use the AIDCA formula as a start for what you want to cover in each slide. But next to adding some extra text, you’ll need some cool images and graphics to make it more engaging.
If you want to create professional looking slides you’ll either have to be able to design them yourself, or buy designs and royalty free graphics online.
If you Google for templates (for either Keynote or Powerpoint) you’ll likely find a lot of options. Again, just make sure that any images you download are allowed to be used for commercial purposes!
If you want to use music for your ad, the same rules of course apply! But, you could also decide to simply record your own voiceover, in which case we would again recommend to use the Blue Yeti or Rode Podcaster USB mic.
You will need some time to create your slides and combine them into an engaging presentation! But usually, this option is less time consuming than creating a talking head video ad.
#3. A Video Template
To create a video ad with one of our templates you will need:
- A computer with internet connection (easy peasy)!
- A few minutes of your time to enter your 5 lines of text and add some images (optional).
Once you submit your video ad inside the Veeroll interface it will be ready for you in about 15-20 min!
Below you can see a selection of our current templates:
As you can see, this is pretty much the easiest and least time consuming option!
In case you’re wondering if video templates like this actually work, take a look at the results of an interesting split test we ran for the Digital Marketer blog.
We tested the ROI of one of our video templates vs. a talking head video ad.
Can you guess which one performed best?
In the example below you can see that our video template converted at an average of $1.79 per lead, compared to our talking head video ad that converted at an average of $2.13 per lead!
In this specific example we were targeting a custom audience for both video ads: an email list of previous customers.
Knowing that Gideon has almost 10 successful years of video marketing under his belt (which is to say he’s pretty experienced with this stuff!) it’s interesting to see how the template still converted better than his talking head video ad.
Of course we’re not saying this is always going to be the case! As the smart marketer that you are, we surely hope you’re stubborn enough to always do your own tests as well.
But, it DOES show that our video templates WORK. And, that they can be equally if not more effective than any of the other options.
At the end of the day ANY of the above video ad formats has the potential to get you great results.
So, let your choice be based on what feels like the best use of your time!
Want to learn how to create highly effective video ad campaigns? FREE training coming up!
I hope this little introduction on video advertising has sparked your imagination and got you excited to get started!
But like I said, there’s a LOT more to talk about when it comes to building effective video ad campaigns.
That’s why next Thursday December 10 at 7PM (EST) we’re hosting a FREE webinar about the next steps you need to take to get your campaign up and running. And of course, on how to get great RESULTS!
In this training you will learn how to build successful video ad campaigns without spending insane amounts of time and money.
And, when you sign up below you will get INSTANT ACCESS to our Ultimate Guide To Building Facebook And Youtube Video Ad Campaigns (PDF).
On the call I’ll also reveal another missing ingredient to video advertising success that I didn’t talk about just yet!
You’re not going to miss this one, right?