YouTube Ads or Facebook Ads: Which Should You Choose?

Modern buying habits have changed exponentially. This can be attributed largely to huge market disruption in the tech world, with immense buying power now at our fingertips via our mobile phones, that also provide us with digital high streets of stores and businesses to buy from. Not to mention the fact that transactions are virtually instant. Within this virtual world of eCommerce, social media and real-time information is a competitive marketplace for businesses.

In this era, businesses both small and large have the gargantuan task of promoting their products or services better than their competitors do. This is hard in itself, but when you consider that the modern consumer, surrounded by constant streams of advertisements and information, has a few seconds of attention to spare, this is even more challenging.  For companies to have any hopes of building a reputable and reliable brand, along with a steady stream of sales and repeat customers, relying on brick-and-mortar store sales won’t cut it in the digital era.

Therefore, they need to promote themselves, their products and services, online using targeted social media ads or YouTube Ads, where interested prospective customers could be innocently waiting to give you their custom.

YouTube ads

Among these methods of digital marketing and advertising, two of the most popular models are Facebook Ads and YouTube Ads. Both platforms have unique quirks and features that make them a great option for businesses of all sizes, however, choosing between Facebook and YouTube Ads can be daunting. This short guide is here to help you make an informed decision on which type of digital marketing strategy can benefit your business the most.

Similarities Between Facebook Ads and YouTube Ads

Firstly, it’s not a case of where you must choose one and not the other. Both YouTube Ads and Facebook Ads have some key similarities which many may not be aware of.

  • They both offer microtargeting options.

Both platforms allow businesses to choose specific audience demographics, behaviours, interests, and locations where their ads can be displayed. This allows companies to target people that are most likely to engage with their ads and, in turn, increase website visitors, app downloads, and conversions.

YouTube Ads

  • You can choose from a wide range of ad types.

Both platforms offer a range of ad formats. Of course, YouTube is video-based, but within that realm there are plenty of video ad types to choose from, such as bumper ads, skippable ads and in-stream ads, to name a few. While Facebook has carousel ads, image ads, slideshows and can also utilise video. Creativity knows no bounds here.

  • Both platforms come with deep, built-in analytics.

Analytics are crucial when running video or social media marketing campaigns over a long period. Within each platform, there are plenty of tools to utilise to understand specifics of each campaign and ad type, with plenty of customisation features to help marketers fine-tune their campaigns.

  • The potential audience reach is massive.

Facebook may appear somewhat irrelevant to users with the emergence of other social media apps, but it’s still the most widely-used social media platform by a long way, with 2.93 billion monthly active users. YouTube is not far behind, with 2.56 billion monthly active users worldwide, working out at approximately 122 million users a day. YouTube is also the second-most visited domain, right behind its parent company Google. 

  • Facebook and YouTube ads use PPC advertising models.

Both Facebook and YouTube allow digital marketing professionals to create ads on a PPC (pay-per-click) advertising model. In essence, this means that people may see a displayed ad, but the advertising business would not be charged unless that viewer interacts with the ad in some way. PPC marketing campaigns can generate results quickly for some companies.

YouTube Ads

From the above, it’s clear to see that both advertising platforms have merit on their own. However, what can successful YouTube ad campaigns offer a business that Facebook ad campaigns cannot, and vice versa? Let’s look at each one a little closer.

Key Differences: Reasons to Consider YouTube Ads

  • People prefer video over static text.

46% of surveyed B2B tech buyers purchase a product or service after viewing video content, according to the International Data Group. Therefore, it’s a misconception to say that YouTube does not provide useful information for consumers. Plus, people crave video content, with the average YouTube visitor spending approximately 20 minutes a day consuming video. That also includes YouTube video ads.

The video above was used in a successful YouTube campaign for James Latham.

  • You can make some ads non-skippable.

As said above, YouTube ad types come in many shapes and sizes. One of these is creating non-skippable ads, which can be slightly more expensive to run, but the potential payoff can be massive. When you find the right audience demographics to target, the non-skippable YouTube ads can be a great opportunity to educate viewers on what you do, how you add value and how you can make a difference to them. Your audience’s undivided attention can be hard to capture, so when you do, make it count.

  • The organic ranking potential is huge.

Closed captions can make a huge difference when running video advertising campaigns. Not only are you demonstrating inclusivity to people that are deaf or hard of hearing and rely on text transcripts, but you’re also ticking a huge box in your efforts to rank on Google and YouTube. The text in your captions is indexed and can increase your keyword depth, ergo, your ranking potential can improve

  • Video is the future.

Short-form content has taken the social media video world by storm. YouTube Shorts has exploded in popularity, and Facebook and Instagram have also introduced alternative ways that users can consume quick-fire videos. This trend, as highlighted in our recent insights, doesn’t show any signs of slowing down. 

Key Differences: Reasons to Consider Facebook Ads

  • You can choose from a few more ad types.

As said above, with Facebook advertising campaigns, you get access to a broad range of ad types. Depending on what your business offers and how it operates, you’ll have more to choose from when it comes to running specific types of Facebook ads. YouTube purely offers video advertising options. 

The video above was used in a successful Facebook Ad campaign for Golf Escapes a golfing holiday specialist

  • Built-in integration with Instagram.

Facebook’s parent company is Meta, which also owns Instagram and WhatsApp. Facebook and Instagram advertising tools operate on similar wavelengths, making it easier for marketers to run the same type of ad on two diverse advertising platforms. Therefore, if you’re considering running Instagram ads, you may benefit from a joint approach that might save you valuable time.

  • Lookalike Audiences and targeting characteristics.

Facebook Ads allow you to create Lookalike Audiences which are custom advertising audiences that can be used to reach similar people to your current customers. This system takes an existing audience and its key characteristics then uses that data to find similar audiences that you can advertise to. 

  • Remarketing and retargeting ads.

If you want to advertise to people that have already visited your website, shop, app or Facebook Page, you can create dynamic retargeting ads that offer a more personalised experience for each prospective customer. This can allow people to rediscover and remember your brand, increasing brand loyalty. 

Should You Choose Facebook or YouTube Advertising for Your Business Marketing?

It’s evident that both Facebook and YouTube ads offer unique benefits to companies and can both make excellent digital marketing tools on their own. Ultimately, however, whichever one you choose first will depend on your business goals, target audiences, and advertising budget. There is no right or wrong answer when deciding on whether to use YouTube or Facebook as an advertising solution for your business. If you prefer the idea of YouTube’s dynamic video-based platform, you’ll need to invest in some professional video production or animation services first. If you are more drawn to Facebook’s diverse range of ad types and retargeting potential, you’ll likely need to do some in-depth audience research beforehand.

YouTube Ads

Ginger Digital recommends you try both platforms and evaluate their performance and suitability to determine which works best for you. Down the line, you may find that running campaigns on both platforms serves you well in the long run.

Free Social Media and PPC Audits from Ginger Digital

If you have run video or static PPC ad campaigns before, but the results have left you deflated and wanting more bang for your buck, then your campaigns might need optimising.  To find out where these missed opportunities lie, and where your campaign can be fine-tuned, Ginger Digital’s social media and PPC experts can run you through it in one of our no-obligation, free audits and reviews There is absolutely no obligation or commitment required; this review is just a way for you to understand how you can better your results, and, ultimately, if you need dedicated, transparent support from a multifaceted agency, how we might be able to bring you better fortunes. We have a team of skilled, in-house, fully-trained video production experts that also know all the best practices to use this video across all social media platforms, including Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and even TikTok.


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