My journey with advertising on YouTube

Discussion in 'Off Topic Forum' started by Macktion, Feb 6, 2015.

  1. Macktion

    Macktion DF News Team
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    This is going to be a chronicle of my interactions with advertisements on YouTube. Its going to ramble, and probably be of no help to a single soul, but I want to put it up, just in case someone is wondering what is going on with these things. Ill be posting related videos, but they are supplemental rather than integral to the story.

    Chapter 1: Viewer
    This is the shortest observation, because it is the one with the fewest groundbreaking notions. Everyone sees these ads, sometimes we can skip them, sometimes we can't. Sometimes the ads are rather daft, and other times they are quite good. Yep, that is about all I knew about it.
     
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  2. Macktion

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    Chapter 2: Creator
    Back in the day (2010 or so) I put up a couple of videos on YouTube. I was fixing a convertable laptop in those videos, and it turned out to be reasonably popular. It was not until I took apart a tablet, (the Notion Ink Adam) that people started to take an interest. At which point, YouTube started letting me put ads on my videos.

    While I had seen them before, this was my first real interaction with advertising on YouTube. And in the first few days, I learned quite a bit, such as how the ads worked:

    1. Company pays Google to run the ads on YT
    2. Google takes money, and runs the ads on a YT channel
    3. Google pays channel on which it was run, (IF people click, or watch through the video [30 seconds or whole video, whichever is shorter]).

    This meant that skipping at 5 seconds did not charge the Company, nor did it give money to the owner of the channel, and learning this, convinced me to disable my adblocker, and sit through the ads on YouTube, precisely because I wanted the people who did the work and created the content to get something back.
     
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  3. Macktion

    Macktion DF News Team
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    Chapter 3: The Sap
    As time went by, I learned a valuable lesson from a terrible experience with a Multi Channel Network. I wont go into all the detials here, but suffice to say that with a MCN, there are a few extra steps:

    1. Company pays Google to run the ads on YT
    2. Google takes money, and runs the ads on a YT channel
    2a. MCNs can allow the channel to determine which types of ads are run (unskippable and such)
    3. Google pays MCN for ads run on their Network (same payouts as listed above)
    4. After the MCN takes their cut (depends on your contract) the Channel owner gets paid.

    Perhaps the most bizarre thing is that during the time I was in an MCN my take-home-cash went up. because of the unskippable video ads, I imagine, but for other reasons, I left that MCN.

    If you want to know this part of the story in a bit more depth, I did make a video, but it is not very important to the overall story

    Edited for clarity​
     
    #3 Macktion, Feb 6, 2015
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2015
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  4. Macktion

    Macktion DF News Team
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    Chapter 4: The Marketer
    The most recent chapter has been from the advertisers position, and the motivation for writing this down. I have been struggling to get my work noticed, and thought it might be interesting to try out an advertising campaign.
    I made a video for the express purpose of showing off my channel,
    and made a google AdWords account to display this video on Android-related channels. The AdWords account was easy to set up, and rather easy to understand (it makes me wonder why my IRL employer pays a company to handle it). And in a few minutes, I had everything set up.
    So far, I can not deny that the results are interesting. for just a couple of dollars per day, I have been able to get that video to get ~180 views per day. These views come entirely from serving the video as Ads. Sometimes it shows up as a video ad before you watch the video you clicked on, other times it is a advertised video in the side-bar and such.

    However, so far (it has only been a few days) these ads have not clearly impacted the quantity of subscribers, or regular viewers of my work. But it is early yet. I intend on running this ad for the entirety of Feb. before I really make any solid decisions, but it is a journey that I want to share with you. Ill be reporting back on the success/failure of my venture, as well as my opinion on its viability for me.
     
    #4 Macktion, Feb 6, 2015
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2015
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  5. Macktion

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    Update: 2/21/15
    So I have learned some valuable lessons so far.
    1. No matter how much money you have established as a (maximum) daily budget Google AdWords will still tell you that your Ad Campaign is "Limited by its budget" and is not having the reach that it could. And while the projected reach and the actual reach (in showings of your ad) do track rather closely, it is still kind of silly: of COURSE you could spend more to reach more people. duh.
    2. From what I can tell, if you change the maximum budget, it will immediately change its showing behavior to match your change, you dont need to wait till the next day for it to take effect.
    3. $2.10/day was kind of the 'sweet spot' at least for me. It had the highest marginal gains per unit money, in projected viewership of any of the projections within a $1.00 amount.

    My experiment is coming to a close next week. The ad campaign will be over soon, and at the end of it, I will do my best to document the gains (and losses) over that period of time.
     
    #5 Macktion, Feb 6, 2015
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2015
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  6. Macktion

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    Chapter 5: The Aftermath. - 3/4/15
    When I started out, I had a simple question; would promoting myself on YT help my success? Would I see real benefits from it?
    The short answer is, Maybe, but not the type of returns that I think the investment should have given.
    For $85 almost 6,000 people saw my ad.
    According to the Google's reports, 0 subscribers came from those 6K views. And only 19 of those instances turned into someone watching more of my work. I don't know how far in they track it, so maybe some of those people subscribed later on? So I looked at my change in subscribers over the ad campaign. I gained 82 subscribers during the month of February. That sounds awesome, until you take into account that its only slightly higher than September and October, a few months before (I prefer not to consider Dec and Jan, on account that the CES convention would probably bias the numbers). So, potentially, between 0 and 19 people MAY have subscribed to my channel, and viewed my work because of that ad.
    but was that worth $85 dollars?
    Not for me, I am afraid. It was simply too high of a cost for such a small return.

    On the bright side, it is now my new video that gets shown if you visit my YouTube page, and are not already Subscribed, so, who knows, maybe it will do a better job convincing from there, than it did while I was sending it around.
     
    #6 Macktion, Feb 21, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2015
  7. FoxKat

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    @Macktion , thanks for posting this. I am interested in doing a similar thing and had wondered how someone gets paid and how the whole thing works. Your information is certainly helpful. I just have to decide exactly what the subject content will be. I've received several items to review and I suspect that it I get the videos out there more will come so I may simply start out as a product reviewer.

    Looking for your final assessment.

    Sent from my Droid Turbo on Tapatalk.
     
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  8. jstafford1

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    I started doing reviews on my channel. I've got ads set up as well just to see how it works. But I'm not doing it for monetary gains, just for the fun of it.
     
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  9. Macktion

    Macktion DF News Team
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    I hope that you don't take that to be my main motivation.
     
  10. cr6

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    I found it to be quite informative so thank you Macktion!
    YouTube notified me about a year ago in regards to incorporating ads into my videos, but I never followed up on it simply because I don't upload all that many videos. I'm all for people making money off their work, but I personally prefer the ads that allow you to click "skip" after 5 seconds if you so choose, as opposed to being "forced" to watch the whole ad. But that's just me speaking as a viewer.
    I watch about an hour of YouTube each night before bed. It's one of my main sources of news, product reviews & entertainment, and since I average 15-20 gig of data a month from YouTube alone, so I watch a LOT of ads. That said, I do prefer given the option to skip them if I so choose.
    I do agree with your comment though that many of the ads on YouTube are actually quite good and often pretty funny, so it doesn't bother me to watch them, compared to television ads.
    Great thread!

    S5 tap'n
     
  11. jstafford1

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    Not at all..... Was just saying. I've got ads on my videos but I'm not overly promoting my channel. It's just kind of a side experiment of sorts.

    This is a good write up though. And down the road I may try promoting a little more once I see your results.
     
  12. FoxKat

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    And nobody said it was your main motivation but if you've got ads that pay you then there is monetary desire. Otherwise you would be donating 100% of the proceeds to charity. There is nothing wrong with being paid to produce content that has value. It's when people put up garbage and you get hit with the ads while being the unfortunate witness to their junk. That's where I find distaste.

    Sent from my Droid Turbo on Tapatalk.
     
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