10 things to know before buying video ads

Thinking of doing a video campaign? Here are some tips you should consider before you even start. A video campaign has an influence on performance if the content, the reach, and the impact is well done.

Video Ad

In advertising, content is the most important piece of a marketing campaign. The video ad should have clear language, make viewers envision using the product, have your brand culture, a call to action (can be integrated with a storytelling), and large logos. The investment in production should be so important as the investment on media, at least the enough that the videos are impactful to the users. As most of the online video ads start without sound, the story should be understandable without sound and in the first seconds.

Cost per View

When buying video ads, the metric CPV should be one of the most important video metrics, like CPC when advertisers buy display ads. CPV is Cost divided by the total number of views. If your Video Ad has 20 seconds, this means you can use the same CPV for Youtube and for Programmatic, but for Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat should be lower, as the views on these platforms are not completed views.

Example: If your cost per view on programmatic is €0.06, on Facebook the cost per view should be around 1 cent per view, but this can be adjusted according to the Average Duration of Video Viewed.

Brand Safety

On Brand Safety, advertisers have the option to include the same language of the video, and block undesired keyworks. Advertisers can also block contexts, like tragedy and conflict.

Advertisers have also the option to use ad verification to see what were the player sizes where the video and was played, the domains where the ads appear and the contexts. On video ads, advertisers should be careful with in-banner video ads, as they end up paying video CPM’s on display placements.

Completion Rate

In addition to cost per view, advertisers normally optimize for Completion Rate. Completion rate is the Video Views divided by Video Starts. This metric is related with the cost per view advertisers end up paying. Low CPM + High Completion Rate = Low CPV.

Completion rate can be used as a metric for video optimization. Is the video optimized to run on a feed environment like facebook? And without sound?


If you use viewability wrappers, like in VAST 4.0, you will be able to measure viewability. That means if the video is being displayed on a screen or in an app. There are many publishers that only use VAST 2.0 in order to not have the viewability measured, but as advertiser you can opt-in only for publishers that allow viewability.

Video ads are considered viewable when at least 50% of the ad is visible while the video is playing for at least 2 consecutive seconds.


On video try to reach the maximum amount of online users. The video environment is not like the display, where most of the users are identified by cookies, so using very specific targetings or frequency caps do not work as in display. On the planning, mix different devices, platforms, publishers (Spotify, Facebook, Youtube, Programmatic, APPs, Games, etc), and attribute budget during the campaign, according to the performances, but also trying to reach most possible users.

If the strategy is increasing the conversion rate and brand recognition, then audiences are worth it.


Bring a story to your customers or potential customers. In many DSP’s and in Adservers is possible to tell a story to the users, showing a video first, then another, then another. Funny and emotional content first to increase the brand recognition, the values of the brand and finally make viewers envision using the product and how to buy it.

In Post View conversions, and creating control groups, you will be able to measure the performance between the persons who saw your video ads and the ones who didn’t.

Brand Study

Google, Facebook and many adservers and DSP’s offer the possibility to do a Brand Lift survey. After the users saw the ad, a display ad with a questionary will be served to the users in order to identify the recall, awareness, consideration, purchase intention, and interest in the brand.