How brands found new ways to make video their creative canvas

How brands found new ways to make video their creative canvas

It’s no secret the media landscape has changed. This past year alone we’ve seen a rise in short-form video and a breakout in AI-powered solutions. People are exposed to a wider variety of content and new ways to consume it, and one-size-fits-all campaigns are no longer enough.

This year’s YouTube Works Awards winners are blazing new trails by ditching the “matching luggage” approach and accounting for people’s unique needs. From tapping into YouTube trends to designing bespoke creative across formats, these advertisers expertly created unforgettable YouTube campaigns that resonated with audiences and drove results. Here are four lessons gleaned from the winners.

Make ads unskippable with bespoke YouTube campaigns

Life insurance company MassMutual wanted to drive awareness around a bold topic: money. The brand recognized that conversations about finances are important but aren’t always easy to have. It needed a creative way to grab attention and inspire people to tune into the topic. So it created a lighthearted campaign featuring diverse families having conversations about their financial futures amid unexpected events. The result was an intimate, fly-on-the-wall experience.

MassMutual sought to make its ads unskippable by breaking the fourth wall, ingeniously utilizing the first six seconds to deliver different variations of the statement, “This is going to be extremely uncomfortable; you might want to skip this.” This small-but-clever detail showed viewers that MassMutual was directly addressing them, creating a powerful connection.

The innovative strategy was wildly successful. In a head-to-head test, its 100% watch rate was 14 percentage points higher and costs per view (CPV) were 2X more cost efficient for creative featuring the made-for-YouTube 6-second add-on.

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