The ads that appear during the first few seconds of a YouTube video are called a “pre-roll.” These ads have proven to be successful at holding user engagement, which makes them effective tools for both branding and sales. The video pre-roll, especially on mobile platforms, is one of the simplest methods you can use to reach out to customers online. The pre-roll isn’t like most forms of rich media advertising, so your approach might be a little different. Here are some tips to get off on the right track.

Why Ads Work

Video ads can be difficult to sell to smaller companies because they are unsure they have what it takes to make a commercial, but that mindset isn’t necessarily correct. Pre-roll ads work because they boost consumer confidence. An effective pre-roll ad isn’t selling the company or its history or its employees. An effective pre-roll ad shows a product in use, or a service being performed. It’s short and drives action.

Explainer videos can also be effective, especially when it comes to a product that isn’t easy to pitch in a few words. These videos have an effect on conversions, because customers on the fence develop a clearer picture of what you do.

Using these tactics, you’ll be able to craft pre-roll ads that hold attention and improve conversion rates.

Bio: Ted Dhanik is an expert direct marketer with experience in both desktop and mobile. Ted Dhanik is the CEO of engage:BDR, a company that specializes in cross-device Display and Video advertising.