The YouTube Advertisers Guide to Google Ads Updates. (2019)

YTAdvertising are here to keep you updated and informed on all the latest Google Ads updates related to YouTube advertising.

The digital landscape is extremely fast moving, platforms and interfaces are updated daily.  

January 2019

15 Second Non-Skippable ads

In January 2019, Google made the non-skippable 15-second video ads available for advertisers to set up via auction. 

These ads have been around for awhile, although the format was only available via YouTube reservation. 

YouTube reservation meant pre-booking and pre-paying for a set number of impression via a google representitive, these came with a minimum spend and were really only possible for large companies with large budgets.   

Not anymore!

Google believes: “this is another step towards a more flexible and intuitive buying experience, where all formats are accessible to all advertisers, regardless of how they buy.

As the name describes, these ads go for 15 seconds, they are non-skippable, they must be hosted on YouTube and are charged on a CPM basis (Cost per thousand impressions).

December 2018

TrueView Action & Call to Action Extension

In December 2018, there were some updates relating to call-to-actions in the form of a new call-to-action extension and the TrueView for Action campaign subtype.  Both these updates allow the CTA overlay to be set up at the time of creating the ad, as well as changing the overall look of the CTA overlay.  

Google Ads Changes:The new look call-to-action overlay

TrueView for Action

TrueView for action is a new format and bid optimisation designed to get more website clicks and conversions. It allows the call to action to be tailored and customised. 

People do not always take action directly after watching a video ad, they often take action a couple of days after viewing.  A video ad may not necessarily drive a click but it will plant the seed that leads to a purchase after further research or when the time suits better.

The relationship between video ad exposure and conversion prompted Google to re-evaluate the attribution model used for TrueView in-stream ads with lead or conversion goals.

An engagement will now be counted when a user clicks or watches 10 seconds or more of a TrueView Action ad using maximise conversions or target CPA bidding types.

A conversion will be counted when a user takes action on your ad within 3 days of an engagement.

To set up a TrueView for action campaign select either the Leads or Website traffic goal optimisation. Followed by video.  It is important to note that conversion tracking must be set up to run a TrueView for Action campaign.

Set up the campaign as normal but select either CPA (Cost-per-action) or maximise conversion bidding type.

When it comes to the ad set up you can set up the ad the same way as usual, but you now have the ability to add a 10 character call-to-action button, and a 15 character headline.

Updates to Google Ads: CTA overlay specs

Call To Action Extension

The new call-to-action extension allows you to set up the call-to-action overlay during the ad set up on campaigns with any other goal, or no goal selected without the need for conversion tracking to be set up.

Updates to Google Ads: New look cta overlay on desktop

To set up a call-to-action using the new call-to-action extension you simply tick the checkbox call-to-action.  Enter the 10 character cta button, and 15 character headline. And you now have a cta overlay.

Updates to Google Ads: Call-to-action extension

November 2018

Ad Pod Testing

In November 2018, YouTube announced they will be trailing Ad Pod for YouTube ads.

“Ad Pod” simply means running a collection of ads before the viewer can access the content.  This is so users don’t get disrupted by multiple ads playing during a long YouTube video.

Ad Pod is only being trialled by YouTube, but is being used by other interactive companies such as Pandora and Hulu.  

Goal Based Campaign Workflow

In November 2018, Google changed the layout and structure of the campaign set up to a goal based workflow. 

This means, when creating a campaign you are first prompted to select a campaign goal.

Updates to Google Ads: Goal Based workflow examples

Google then shows you the best campaign types and subtypes for that goal.  (Remember, not all goal types are suitable for video campaigns).

Updates to Google Ads: Campaign subtypes for a goal based workflow

This is in comparison to the previous layout, where you would select the ad type (Video) first, and then select your campaign goal.

Out-stream Ad

Since the new goal based work-flow, the out-stream video ad option has been available under the awareness and reach goal option.

Although not technically a YouTube ad, out-stream ads take a YouTube hosted video and display it on google partnered sites and apps.

These ads help extend the reach of your video campaign by sharing it with a wider audience of mobile and tablet users.  

Out-stream ads are for mobile and tablet devices only, they start muted and can be tapped for sound, and are charged on a viewable CPM basis.

They can be a great addition to your YouTube video campaign.

Video Ad Sequence

In November 2018, Google announced the global availability of the video sequencing tool. It allows advertisers to tell a story that evolves over time, format or device.  By showing people a series of videos you are able to build interest, re-enforce a message or create a unifying theme. 

Each sequence campaign is made up from a series of steps, within each step is an ad group and an ad (either a TrueView In-stream or Bumper).  Once your sequence campaign is running, viewers will see the first video in your sequence and continue to follow the steps until the sequence is viewed in it’s entirety.

To set up a sequence campaign select the brand awareness and reach objective, followed by video and then the campaign subtype as Ad sequence.

TrueView Reach

In November 2018, Google added the new TrueView Reach component.

This combines the TrueView In-stream ad with impression buying (CPM). 

Formerly, TrueView in-stream ads were only charged on a cost-per-view (CPV) basis. The new change allows advertisers with reach or awareness goals to see more efficient results.

Updates to Google Ads: Types of in-stream reach campaigns

To set up a TrueView Reach Campaign select the goal Brand Awareness & Reach, select Video, and then select Skippable in-stream.  To run a cost-per-view campaign select Standard awareness.

September 2018

Detailed Demographics

Google Ads now has a new targeting option called “Detailed Demographics”.

You will find this below the “Audiences” drop-down.

Updates to Google Ads: Detailed demographics

Under detailed demographics you have the ability to target based on:

Parental status:

            Parents of Infants (0-1 years)

            Parents of Toddlers (1-3 years)

            Parents of Pre-schoolers (4-5 years)

            Parents of Grade-schoolers (6-12 years)

            Parents of Teens (13-17 years)

Marital Status


            In a Relationship



            Current College Student

            Highest level of attainment:

            High-School Graduate

            Bachelors Degree

            Advanced Degree

Home Ownership status



Vertical Video for TrueView and Universal App Campaigns

In September 2018, Google announced that you can now upload vertical videos in TrueView and Universal app campaigns.

When the ad is viewed on a mobile device, the player will automatically expand based on the dimensions of the video.

It is recommended to run both vertical and horizontal videos to the same campaign for maximum brand impact.

Updates to Google Ads: Vertical video example

July 2018

Major Platform Updates

In July 2018, Google did a major update and re-brand of their advertising platform “Google Adwords”.  An exciting change for the platform, a frustrating change when trying to build a course (Free Course)(Premium Course).

“Google Adwords” is now known as “Google Ads”, a name that better represents the capabilities of the platform.

Updates to Google Ads: New Logo

The new URL for Google Ads is:

As well as a name change, the Google Ads interface has undergone a makeover.

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