Most pre-roll ads on YouTube are something to be endured, muted, and skipped immediately after the mandatory five seconds have passed. It’s nothing personal — people just want to get to their video.
So how can advertisers create branded videos that users actually want to watch?
For an ad to be sought out and consumed willingly on YouTube, it needs to stand out as an enjoyable, compulsively shareable story. It can’t just be a typical advertisement — it needs to compete for attention with viral, non-branded content.
To better understand what YouTube users want in a watchable online ad, let’s take a look back at what worked in 2017.