All About YouTube TrueView In-Stream Ads

YouTube is one of the most popular social media platforms of our time, with millions upon millions of videos. YouTube has served as the catalyst for social media influencer careers, a music streaming service for its millions of users, and a source of revenue for brands looking to post their advertising campaigns. Today, we will learn all about YouTube TrueView advertising, what exactly TrueView in-stream ads are, and how to incorporate them into your foolproof marketing strategy. 

what is trueview

What is YouTube TrueView Advertising?

So what is TrueView advertising? TrueView advertising is an advertising system in which ads are placed in YouTube videos through either in-stream ads or discovery ads. These ads can also be placed on other sites and apps in the Google Display Network. Such advertisements can also run on YouTube videos that are embedded on other platforms such as blog sites. 

Types of TrueView Ads

There are a number of different YouTube TrueView advertising types that we are going to cover. They include in-stream ads, discovery ads, action ads, and reach outs. Depending on your business goals, you might consider focusing on one ad type or creating a marketing strategy of various TrueView advertising types. Regardless of which one you choose, you can be sure to reap great results for different aspects of your business. 

In-Stream Ads

First, let’s talk about the standard in-stream ads. In-stream ads are ads that appear when you click on a video and can stream before, during, or after the video. These ads are ideal for brand awareness campaigns. With a TrueView in-stream ad, your company only gets charged when someone watches 30 seconds of your video or the duration of your video if your video length is less than 30 seconds. After five seconds, viewers have the opportunity to skip the ad. If they do so, you will not be charged for that either. 

Discovery Ads

Discovery ads pop up when the video appears in the related search results or video pages on YouTube. The ad will usually feature the thumbnail of the video in addition to ad copy. The purpose of TrueView discovery ads is to attract the target market of your brand and business to your videos, your YouTube Channel, and ultimately your website. Analytics for your discovery ads will tell you the number of impressions, clicks, and views each one gets. Similar to in-stream ads, you will only be charged when someone views the video. 

youtube trueview ads

Reach Ads

TrueView reach ads are a combination of the in-stream ads and a cost-per-impression buying basis. These ads specifically help you reach members of your target audience in the most efficient manner possible. They are great for any sort of awareness campaign as TrueView reach ads are great at helping viewers remember the brand and its message more vividly. 

Actions Ads

TrueView actions ads are mainly used to help increase conversions and promote calls-to-action.  Through the use of headline text overlays, vibrant images, and an end screen, you can use TrueView actions ads to get viewers to subscribe to email lists, make donations, or any other action that will be advantageous to the growth of your brand and the goals of your mission. With any sort of ad format, it is wise to have some sort of system of tracking in place. This will help you make sure you are reaching your conversion goals. 

Where Do TrueView Ads Get Placed?

TrueView advertisements can be found in various different places on YouTube. One of them is the YouTube search result page. In this scenario, your video ad will appear above the organic search results and will display the video title, channel name, thumbnail, and view count. YouTube TrueView ads can also be found in the YouTube watch pages. Here, they can appear as a separate video unit or as an overlay. They can also appear on the YouTube mobile app’s home page.

trueview advertising

What are the Benefits of YouTube TrueView Advertising?

As stated previously, creating YouTube TrueView advertisements is a highly effective marketing tool. But why is this? Well, there are a few reasons. 


One of them is the fact that it is highly cost-effective. This is because these ads allow you to target those who have interacted with your ads already, instead of pushing out advertising content to people who show no interest. You’re better able to reel in people who genuinely find something about your brand interesting and hone in on converting them into real clients and customers. Additionally, TrueView advertising allows you to decide how much each view will cost. You can set specific price points per view and set it as your maximum cost per click. Thus, YouTube TrueView Advertising can be great for marketing on a budget. 

Match Your Ads to Viewers

Another reason why YouTube TrueView Advertising is so great is that it helps you match your ad to the video the viewer is going to watch. Many viewers are turned off by ads that do not correlate to the topic of the video they are watching. For example, an ad for a beauty brand playing before a cooking video may not gain as much engagement. YouTube TrueView advertising prevents this from happening by matching your advertisement to a video that is of a similar topic.

In fact, it specifically ensures that your ad will reach viewers who have similar characteristics, values, and/or behaviors of the target market of your brand. When this happens, viewers who see your ad are more likely to be interested in what you have to offer. To make this happen, TrueView advertising allows you to check different boxes that pertain to gender, topics, interests, parental status, along with many more. Since TrueView provides this enormous advantage, it’s so important that you conduct thorough market research so that you know how members of your target market operate. 

Flexible Design

A third benefit to consider is that YouTube TrueView ads have a seamless, flexible design that caters to all devices. What this means is TrueView advertisements can be clearly seen on mobile devices, computers, and tablets. Your viewers will be able to easily engage with them on whatever device they may be using. Because TrueView ads are so versatile, they can expand your reach exponentially. 

Another flexible feature about TrueView ads is that you are able to customize the length of your ad. You can do something short and sweet or perhaps a standard 30-second ad. This is a great tool because you are able to be more creative with your ads and align them more closely with your overall campaign. Lengthier ads are a perfect opportunity to tell a story such as a customer testimonial or perhaps to go into detail about a certain facet of your business. 

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Help Reach Your Marketing Goals

Finally, YouTube TrueView Ads are perfect because they can aid you in reaching your business goals. Whether you want to increase general brand awareness, notify your target market about a coming sale, or simply want to increase conversions, the various tools that YouTube TrueView ads offers can get you there. The flexibility and versatility it offers is unlike anything else you can find in the digital marketing space. 

Recent Notable Changes 

Before you dive into creating your own YouTube TrueView ads, you should be aware of the recent changes to the platform. First off, YouTube has limited its usage of cookies and pixels. Since most of YouTube’s users enjoy the platform on mobile devices, YouTube has cut back on the traditional tracking of cookies and pixels. That’s because these are more commonly used on the web and desktop. 

In its place, YouTube has implemented an updated tracking system. What does this mean? Basically, the new tracking system allows for advertisers to provide more relevant content to those in their target audience. Another recent change is that advertisers can conduct more independent audits of campaign performance. This gives advertisers access to more accurate analytics as well as a more transparent ad creation experience.

Lastly, 30-second skippable ads are no longer possible on the platform. This change was in response to data that showed a high abandonment rate on videos with 30-second unskippable ads. With this said, this is a sign that your ads have to be creative and grab users’ attention as fast as possible to prevent people from skipping over your ad. 

what is youtube trueview

The Bottom Line 

If you have considered taking advantage of YouTube TrueView advertisements in the past, don’t delay! Implementing TrueView advertising as part of your marketing strategy can be great exposure for your brand. You are able to create various ad types from those focused on call to action efforts while others can simply raise brand awareness. YouTube TrueView ads allow you to be flexible by giving you many options from customizable ad times and filters that can help you reach your target audience. 

The recent changes to YouTube’s advertising structure allow for you to provide more relevant content to viewers that align with their interests and values, as well as the video they are about to watch. Lastly, YouTube TrueView ads can be viewed on virtually any sort of device from mobile phones and tablets to computers. This gives you the ability to reach a wider audience than other advertising methods. 


  • How much does it cost to create a YouTube TrueView ad?
  • What are the types of TrueView ads?
  • What is YouTube TrueView advertising?
  • Why should I use Youtube TrueView ads?
  • How can I reach more people with my TrueView ads?

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