Connected TV (CTV) is the fastest-growing digital ad channel, as more TV watchers cancel cable subscriptions and turn to lower-priced or free a la carte streaming options they can watch on TVs, laptops and mobile devices. Many streamers are also potential B2B prospects, but not many B2B marketers are leveraging CTV for advertising.
“We believe connected TV advertising is undervalued, and there’s so much that digital, data-driven marketers can do with connected TV advertising that goes beyond the scope of any other ad channel,” said Hooman Javidan-Nejad, director of performance marketing for CTV advertising platform MNTN, at The MarTech Conference.
Why we care. Hit shows on streaming services get the credit for the CTV surge. But within these mass audiences there is data for targeting and segmentation. B2B marketers ahead of the curve have also experimented with streaming for delivering on-demand video content to prospects.
Serving prospects ads on ad-supported Netflix, or managing your own video programming like a kind of B2B Netflix, is a much different experience than traditional whitepapers that recognize professionals’ changing media consumption and self-serve research habits.
CTV data. “Data-driven marketing has picked up in the last decade because the nature of all those digital channels are enabling you, and empowering you, to have access to the data and to act on it,” said Javidan-Nejad. “This is something that we never had for a TV — [traditional linear] TV advertising has always had limited or no reporting.”
Because of CTV’s digital infrastructure, ad campaigns on that channel have performance and measurement data that can be used as a market research tool.
“The beauty of approaching connected TV just like another digital channel is that you can apply the same targeting criteria you are applying today on LinkedIn, or on Facebook,” he added. “The insights that you’re getting from connected TV advertising can be applied to all the other channels, or the insights that you’re getting from the creative can be applied into the other channels.”
Finding audiences on CTV. When advertising on CTV, B2B marketers should execute multiple campaigns, or target different audiences with a single campaign.
For example, a B2B marketer could run one campaign based on job titles, and another one based on firmographic criteria. You could also launch a retargeting campaign, based on first-party data acquired from those who have visited your website and shared their info.
“For each of these audiences, you will get audience segment reporting,” Javidan-Nejad explained. “So you will be able to see which of these audiences have performed better, which of these audiences had a better verified visit rate, and all the other metrics [to discover] which audiences are performing better. And then you can take those audience insights and apply them to the other channels.”
Matched audiences. B2B marketers can also use existing customers and prospects from their CRM and match them with a CTV adtech partner, in order to deliver CTV ads to those prospects when they’re watching streaming TV.
“This is the same audience that you’re using across all the other paid social channels,” said Javidan-Nejad. “The insights and learnings that you get from CTV can be extended and implemented across the other channels.”
Testing creative. Before committing a large budget on a robust TV campaign, B2B marketers can test different kinds of creative on CTV to determine what messages and visual cues stick with customers and prospects.
While every digital ad channel has its own sweet spot for what works in video ads, some of these insights about what works best on CTV can be applied to other channels.
“We are all familiar with A/B testing,” Javidan-Nejad said. “As digital marketers, we always try to leverage this feature or functionality across all the other digital channels. Now you’re able to do that for your TV advertising.”
Creating a video is a creative process which involves a lot of brainstorming, editing and producing. But the success of your video does not 100% rely on the quality or originality of that video.
Whether your video is going to be a success is determined by how many people will be able to find it and watch it.
Don’t underestimate the discoverability of your video. It may make or break your whole video marketing strategy performance.
One of the biggest channels that can drive findability of your video is search engine optimization, i.e. optimizing your video page for it to rank in search engines (mainly Google and Youtube search) for relevant keywords.
And one of the most important SEO elements of any page is its title.
What is a Youtube title?
“Title” is what you see on the browser tab when you open any Youtube page:
It is controlled by the “Title” field which is required when you upload your video to Youtube:
In the code of the page the title can be found within <title></title> tags.
On a Youtube video page, the title is also repeated underneath the video as the main heading making it also an on-page SEO element.
Youtube allows you to enter up to 100 characters to the title field and I recommend making the most of those 100 characters.
How can titles impact the findability of your video?
Page titles are key on-page SEO elements because they do both:
Page titles are direct ranking factors (Google uses them to understand what the page is about)
Page titles impact click-through by being the most visible parts of standard search snippets.
Since titles are so important for your video findability and clickability, spend some extra time brainstorming effective video titles. Here are a few ideas:
How to create an effective Youtube title
1. Include your keyword
This is important in the context of this article. Keywords are still very important for SEO because they still help search engines understand the main topic of your page.
Keyword research is also a great way to estimate a demand for any topic (by looking at the search volume).
Identifying your main keyword and including it into the page title will help that video page rank for that keyword driving views for your video and generating additional brand visibility to your business. There are lots of tools and plugins allowing you to identify your target keywords.
It is a good idea to grab URLs of your competing videos and run them through this SEO Content Checker to identify their keyword usage and learn from that:
2. Make it sound interesting
I know it sounds obvious but there are too many boring video titles for me not to mention it.
Your video title needs to invite a click, so make sure it is interesting enough to invite one.
I realize it sounds easier than it really is and in many cases it is also highly subjective. But there’s a tool to help.
Using ChatGPT will help you find some ideas, in case you are stuck. Here’s what the tool was able to generate when I requested the following “Generate video title ideas that will include “Youtube marketing” keyword. Make those titles sound intriguing:”
There are quite a few pretty nice ones. If you don’t like what the tool suggested, keep asking it for more, changing your request just a bit to make it think harder.
This tool is great but make sure to pick a title that won’t over-promise. There’s a fine line between “intriguing” and “click-baiting.” Try and avoid the latter as it may reflect badly on your branding strategies.
3. Include numbers
Including a number in your page title has proven to be an effective way to get more people to click it. Click-through is likely to be an (indirect) ranking factor, so if more people click your title, there’s a good chance it will rank higher.
You cannot make each of your videos a listicle though, so you won’t be able to use this trick in each of your Youtube titles. But it is a good format to keep in mind and use from time to time.
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4. Mention a brand (if there’s one to mention)
Finally, if your video is about a well-known brand (for example, if that video is of you speaking at an event) or, more importantly, if you create it in collaboration with a well-known expert and/or influencer, include that name in your title.
Not only will it help your video rank for that searchable name, it will also increase its click-though thanks to people recognizing that name.
Youtube also allows you to tag that name in the title (much like tagging works on Twitter or Facebook). If you add @ and then start typing that name, Youtube will allow you to select that name from the drop-down (if that brand or person has a Youtube channel). This will notify them on the mention and urge them to engage with the video helping its visibility:
No need to include your brand name though (unless that video is all about you or your company). If you pick your Youtube name well, it will help you build your brand’s recognizability with every high-ranking video because the channel name is always included in search snippets.
Keep a close eye on your results
Finally, creating an effective title is something that you can never do perfectly. There’s always room for improvement and experimentation. Learn from other well-performing videos in your or outside your niche and never stop experimenting.
Monitor video carousels for your important keywords to get notified when a new video succeeds in getting there and not what may have brought them that success. There are SEO monitoring tools that can help you with that task:
Additionally, keep a close eye on your Youtube analytics to monitor keywords that generate views from Youtube search and learn from those results:
You spend hours creating your video. It deserves a good title which will help your video get found. Spend some time brainstorming an effective title, experiment with different formats and measure your success. Good luck!