AdWords
4K members online now
4K members online now
Boost and manage your AdWords for Video (YouTube ads) performance
Guide Me
star_border
Reply

In-stream Keyword Targeting?

Follower ✭ ☆ ☆
# 1
Follower ✭ ☆ ☆

Has anyone actually figured out how to target in-stream by keywords and actually show on relevant videos?  Please don't point me to any general Adwords links.  I'm only looking for a response from people that are actually in the trenches and are getting results.  

1 Expert replyverified_user

In-stream Keyword Targeting?

Rising Star
# 2
Rising Star

@Antonio G

 

I'm definitely "in the trenches" when it comes to in-stream ads.   It would be helpful if you would provide more details on what you're doing and the placement results you are getting.

In-stream Keyword Targeting?

[ Edited ]
Follower ✭ ☆ ☆
# 3
Follower ✭ ☆ ☆

Hi @David Kyle, thank you so much for your response.  I've tried grouping keywords anywhere from one keyword to over a couple of hundred similar keywords and have also tried using broad, phrase and exact matches.  This only seems to be working when it comes to YT search targeting.  I usually don't select any interests or topics when it comes to in-stream keyword bidding, only demographics and countries.  

 

So the keywords get triggered but when I go to the stats to see what placements they actually shown under, it is all completely unrelated videos - as wild as Justin Bieber, even though my niches are from finance to health and fitness and have nothing to do with it.  

In-stream Keyword Targeting?

Rising Star
# 4
Rising Star

@Antonio G

 

Thanks for those details, they are most helpful.

 

it's my understanding that keywords are really for YouTube search only. They do not work like keywords do in regular display campaigns.  So basically your in-stream campaigns are based on demographics and country.  Does your keyword list really have views and impressions attributed to them?  Are these campaigns YouTube only or are you including the GDN?

I have found that if you really care about placements, then topic and manual channel/video placements are the way to go.  You can of course still combine these with demographics and location. There are a lot of detailed sections and sub sections available in Topics.  For the most part, they are pretty accurate. I did an in-stream campaign for a country line dancing bar, and we targeted their area with the country music sub-topic.  The vast majority of these were country music videos with some other types that were related to the country music industry.  You will still see stuff that might not be applicable, but you'll most likely understand why it was included.  For example, I did one for the tennis sub-topic and there was one about Serena Williams marrying the Reddit founder.  Certainly not a video about tennis, but it was a interest story about a popular tennis player.

Another thing to consider is that the topics you choose don't necessarily have to match your video. It's all about hypothesizing what people interested in your product/service might want to watch on YouTube. For example, for a lawn/landscaping service, we tested the the golf sub-topic.  The hypothesis was that people who like golf are into maintaining their yards and having them look nice. Results were decent.    I would create an ad group for each hypothesis and test it.  Make sure you're taking advantage of companion banners too! They stay on the watch page after the ad is over.

In-stream Keyword Targeting?

[ Edited ]
Follower ✭ ☆ ☆
# 5
Follower ✭ ☆ ☆

David, thanks.  However, I am looking for a specific solution for the keyword in-stream targeting. The other targeting methods I have a thorough understanding of.  And to answer your question, those keywords are for a fact being triggered and have views and impressions - It is Youtube and in-stream only, no GDN.  

 

I know of a couple of people that are successfully doing this but of course aren't willing to share.  Hopefully someone with experience in this specific department will be willing to chime in.  If not, I'll keep testing until the solution comes out.  

In-stream Keyword Targeting?

Rising Star
# 6
Rising Star

@Antonio G

 

Why won't they share? How can you confirm they are getting it to work if they won't?  If you check the related posts to this one, you'll see the first one is answered by a Google Employee. He states that keyword targeting is not for in-stream: https://www.en.advertisercommunity.com/t5/AdWords-Tracking-and-Reporting/Youtube-In-stream-Ads-for-Y...  Now this post is over 3 years old, and things certainly could have changed, but I see more current reports that are to the contrary.  I have seen people say that it creates a very broad theme and that it pulls more than the video itself, i.e. the channel and its theme.

Another thing that bothers me is the official video ad help section that mentions keyword targeting: https://support.google.com/adwords/answer/2454017?hl=en
It says, 

  • Keywords: Depending on your video ad format, you can show your video ads based on words or phrases--keywords--related to a YouTube video, YouTube channel, or type of website that your audience is interested in.

"Related" and "interested in" can have very broad interpretations. 

I've seen a very respected Adwords person report on this at a third party site. I don't like linking to those, but if you query "youtube keyword targeting in-stream" you'll see an SEJ article that is just over a year old giving quite a detailed story on it.  He tested with phrase match only and still got all kinds of irrelevant placements.  I also have done a lot of tests with negative keyword targeting. It does not work at all. I did a video on it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XKmS3oKcs5k  And later asked a product manager about it in one of those official "Ask a Googler" sessions. They admitted it does not work as it should, but it is something they are working on.  This is something I test from time to time, and can see no evidence that anything has changed.   In my mind, if negative keywords don't work, why would exact match or phrase match work on the other side of it.  
I've just accepted, as have others, that something is just weird when it comes to in-stream and keywords on YouTube, and that it's not reliable.  I question that anyone has gotten it to "work" like regular display with any accuracy, and I will still continue to do so until I see definitive proof.

In-stream Keyword Targeting?

Follower ✭ ☆ ☆
# 7
Follower ✭ ☆ ☆

David, I've seen their results, inside their account at an event last month so I know that it's possible.  And yes I did come across that same article.  I find Google employees very unreliable and clueless to be quite blunt.  When I first started marketing on YT I was told by numerous employees that certain things weren't possible or are supposed to work a certain way and yet I've proven it to be crap over and over again while spending hundreds of thousands.  Their algo isn't perfect(not by any stretch of imagination) but there are ways to bend it and make it work in your favor.  Again, I have other targeting methods dialed-in but am still looking to crack this nut.  

In-stream Keyword Targeting?

Rising Star
# 8
Rising Star

@Antonio

 

so if you've seen inside their account, what was different? 

In-stream Keyword Targeting?

Follower ✭ ☆ ☆
# 9
Follower ✭ ☆ ☆

Only a portion of the account and i noticed one of the campaign names had "keywords instream" in the title so i asked about it. 

 

Will keep this thread open in case someone else is willing to chime in. 

In-stream Keyword Targeting?

[ Edited ]
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 10
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

This is a GREAT discussion!

 

Have clients that really want to delve into keyword targeting ,but have NO IDEA if it works (the way we want it to).

 

We want to show in-stream ads based on recent GOOGLE SEARCH HISTORY. The searches for this stuff on youtube would be minimal, so youtube search has no value.

 

Really want to know how keyword targeting works with the recent changes.

 

KD