4 ways to make your next YouTube ad unskippable

I like ads. I love a good piece of communication. I seek them out.

Partly because it’s a part of my job, but the main reason is I like a good laugh. And a lot of good ads are funny. Ah, yes, I like ads. But most people don’t.

A lot of them see advertising as intrusive. A barrier between us and what we want to see, read or listen to. That’s why we instinctively do anything (besides pay attention) when a TV ad comes on: we change the channel, go to the bathroom, finish up the cooking, check Whatsapp messages, play Candy Crush, talk to your wife, make a phone call, feed the cat. Pretty much anything other than watch the ad.

So what happens when you present an ad with a Skip option to this same audience? The temptation for the viewer is to countdown the seconds (5! 4! 3! 2! 1) till we can finally press the Skip button.

This is the reality we are faced with as marketers. But thank God our friends at Google have been analyzing YouTube ads for the past 10 years. Here are some tips to make your next ad unskippable.

Create with the end in mind

Kenyan brand custodians understand the importance of intergrating digital in media plans. That is a very good thing. However, we also need to intergrate digital in the creative process. Currently, this is how it’s done: an ad runs on the national broadcaster, then a few minutes later, the exact same ad appears on Youtube. We need to customize content for specific audiences.

Check your logo

The feedback from the tests done by Google revealed that audiences remember a logo that is on a product. Floating logos, no matter how big they are, were not memorable. Place the product in a way that shows the logo.

Humor wins

Engaging with your audience is a sure way to get them past the Skip button. Funny ads offer value to the viewer and give them a reason to keep watching. Also, when you have an unpredictable start to your ad, the audience is shocked into wanting to see more.

Time is on your side

Unlike the conventional 30 second TV ad, with the fast VO at the end, this is a medium that can accomodate extended length. You don’t have to rush the story here. Take your time.

Thanks for reading. Let’s make your next YouTube ad epic!