11 Reasons Why Your Video Ads Are Underperforming

2023 has been a financially turbulent year for many small businesses so far, to say the least. Therefore, you may be wondering whether now is the time to invest in a video marketing strategy for example running YouTube Ads, Google ads or paid social media campaigns. 

Yes, there are upfront costs associated with any type of digital marketing – PPC, social media, video, to name a few – but they all share a common aim: to communicate a key message to your audience, attract them to your business, and improve your bottom line.

As they say, you have to spend money to make money. 

Sadly, when it comes to video advertising campaigns, many marketers spend plenty but make very little in ROAS (return on ad spend). Why might that be? It’s hard to surmise in a few short paragraphs, given that video marketing campaigns take many forms, depending on the chosen platform(s), ad type, goals, and the all-important advertising budget.

YouTube Ads

Executing professional and winning video campaigns can be a challenge, particularly if you have little or no PPC video marketing experience. There is a plethora of information online that changes with each passing day, not to mention the evolving trends of buyer behaviour and content consumption, which is hard to keep track of. 

However, as a loose guide, your existing video campaign ads may not be converting for a few simple reasons, which may prompt you to retrace your steps and reassess how you approach your future video marketing efforts.

Reasons Why Your Video Ads Are Not Converting

1. Your video ads are inconsistent.

Consistency is key when it comes to promoting your business online. Over time, as your business evolves and changes, any digital paid ads that you run need to reflect your current position. Often, YouTube ads run with expired offers, outdated sales messages, or with old business branding, taglines or products. Therefore, customers may be getting mixed messages and not converting as a result.

Make sure your YouTube ads reflect where your business is now, and ensure it matches your customer-facing channels like your website, social media pages, and any printed media.

2. Your video production quality is poor.

Investing in professional video production services – or, if your business warrants it, video animation services – goes a long way in establishing your brand as trustworthy, and different (and better) than the competition.




Poor and substandard video production, which is  dull and with easy-to-spot errors, can turn potential customers away in droves. This could explain why they have no faith or trust in your brand and are showing as much by their lack of conversions.

3. Your video lacks a distinct and coherent narrative.

It’s tricky to determine exactly how much of your video content should be spent drilling home your sales message or CTA (more on that later). However, too much emphasis on sales can be off-putting and overwhelming for customers. 

Many online shoppers are drawn to lifestyle-based content with a narrative that they can identify with. The narrative will, of course, vary for different audiences, brands and products. Consider giving your viewers something to focus on for a short period, that evokes an emotion, and try to thread your message indirectly.

4. Your video ad campaign is not optimised.

Video campaigns like YouTube ads need marketers to enter important, valuable metadata to ensure the campaign is optimised, and reaches the desired target audience. This involves effective use of keywords, tags, video descriptions, captions, and more, all of which influences how well that video performs organically in search. Organic visibility is crucial to retain in such a competitive, video-dominated marketplace. If you aren’t ranking or getting any traffic, make sure you have added relevant metadata.

5. You are not using the right marketing channel(s). 

Most marketers opt for YouTube ads, understandably, when it comes to video campaigns. However, many don’t realise the potential of other platforms like LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, TikTok and other social media sites, which incorporate video ads into multiple aspects of their interfaces. 

It might be that marketers focus too incessantly on one specific marketing channel, and may find success elsewhere, or by combining video ads onto multiple platforms

Remember that all platforms have unique guidelines for advertising with video, including unique dimensions and lengths for such content. So if you want to promote video ads across multiple channels, ensure you are following each platform’s recommended guidance. 

6. You have no definitive call to action (CTA). 

Marketers can sometimes create content without any definitive CTA, meaning the customer has no incentive to take any further action. CTAs are crucial if you want to steer more of your viewers towards becoming customers. Whether it’s signing up to a mailing list, submitting a response, ticking a box, sharing a post to enter a competition draw, or anything else, giving your audience something to do is often why videos get plenty of views but very little resulting clicks or conversions.

YouTube Ads 

If you are presenting a CTA but having little success, consider whether you have any friction points. Turning high numbers of views into tangible conversions may require you to prompt your desired CTA in a different way, perhaps in an easier way for your viewers.

7. You have chosen the wrong video ad type.

Video ads are constantly evolving, and depending on your chosen marketing channel(s) for example YouTube Ads, Google Ads etcetera, you may have simply selected the wrong ad type. All platforms have various ad types to choose from, with some best suited to certain types of video content. If your current setup is proving ineffective, consider researching alternative ways to promote your brand, products or services.

8. You haven’t selected the right bidding strategy.

It can be quite difficult to select the right PPC bidding strategy, which, if you are unaware, is how you are billed for the clicks, views, impressions, or conversions that your ad receives. It’s often the case where a stagnant or failing video marketing campaign simply did not have the right focus from the outset, which is why it’s important to align your video campaign with your advertising goals.

9. The video doesn’t engage the viewer.

It’s all well and good having a clear narrative, but if you aren’t hooking your viewers in the first five seconds of your video ad, you’re losing potential valuable revenue. Simply put, if an audience is disengaged, they won’t continue to watch, nor will they identify with your selling point or sales message, nor will they likely complete your desired CTA. Make sure that from the very first second you have the right engaging elements in your video content to keep them watching.

YouTube Ads

10. You have targeted the wrong audience.

It’s vital to research the type of audience(s) you want to tap into with your video campaigns. Understand your audience and their pain points, and make sure that video ads address these pain points, ideally in a succinct way, and have kept their attention for longer than the first vital few seconds. If these are not identified pre-launch, you may be setting your campaign up to fail straight away.

11. The video doesn’t align with your business goals. 

Setting business goals is one of the most crucial things you can do before any marketing activity gets underway. However, if your video ads do not support these goals – be they short- or long-term – you may be setting yourself up for disappointment. Consult with your team(s) to make sure all goals are aligned at a micro- and macro-level, and look at the campaign data that will tell you all you need to know about how your campaign is performing. If it is not working, consider whether it truly supports your goals.

YouTube Ads

Optimise Your YouTube Ads With Expert, Fully-Managed Campaigns

There are several reasons why your video marketing ads may not be performing as well as you’d hoped. 

It’s no secret that video marketing – and production for that matter – is hard to master. However, if you want expert, tailored advice by a professional company that does both, and creates campaigns for a wide range of clients in various sectors, why not consider a free review call with Ginger Digital?

A no-obligation call could be just enough to help you see what is and isn’t working well for you in your current video campaigns. For free, we’ll guide you through some initial, top-level data, and outline how we, as an award-winning video marketing agency, can help turn your video ads into vital lead generation or brand awareness assets.

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