Texas Tech University

Marketing News

eLearning YouTube Ads Leverage 'Skip Ad' Button

by Kelly Podzemny

A new series of YouTube ads promoting online degree programs at Texas Tech University is creatively leveraging the placement of the 'Skip Ad' button and the amount of time viewers are required to watch an ad before skipping it.

When an ad plays before a viewer can watch a video, YouTube requires them to watch the first 5 seconds. A 'Skip Ad' button is then superimposed on top of the video. Viewers can click it at any time to skip the rest of the ad and continue watching the video they originally played. Generally only 10% of viewers watch a full YouTube ad.

The six new ads from TTU Worldwide eLearning each highlight a different online degree program. The primary message of each ad is conveyed in the first 5 seconds before the 'Skip Ad' button appears. A splash screen with a simulated 'Learn More' button displays for the following 25 seconds. Through the use of YouTube annotations the new button links to more information about the program featured in each video, and looks like it belongs with the 'Skip Ad' button.

Worldwide eLearning YouTube Ads

The 'Learn More' button is part of Worldwide eLearning's ads. When YouTube superimposes its 'Skip Ad' button underneath, it appears as though both buttons are part of YouTube's interface.

The editing of the video ads ensures that all viewers will hear the primary message, because it's communicated in less than 5 seconds. The 25 seconds after gives viewers time to decide if they'd like to skip the ad, or visit the TTU Worldwide eLearning website to learn more.

Bonus: If a viewer skips a YouTube ad before it's finished... it's free.

The ads are scheduled to rotate each week during August 30-November 28, 2015. In the first four weeks of the campaign 48,677 people have seen at least the first five seconds of the ads at a cost of 2.5¢ per an impression. Approximately 18% decided not to skip the ads or clicked 'Learn More.'

The six videos can be viewed below. Additional programs may be featured in future campaigns as Worldwide eLearning's marketing program develops.