Back in kindergarten we learned that if we want people to like us, we need to share. That lesson comes in especially handy for marketers, who must share their content if they want to get likes and views and leads.

So you do your research, and you learn that video is the best way to engage audiences. Then you make some killer videos to market your brand and product, and you share them in all the ways that you can think of: you put them on your website, in your video hub, on your blog, on YouTube, and through all the social media channels. And then you wait, hoping that people will come across them, embed them, like them, and share them.

But what if you want to do more than that? What if you want to go above and beyond, and really get the ball rolling by making sure that your video is viewed by as many people as possible?

I’m going to tell you what I hope the five-year-old you was never told in school: sometimes you have to shell out some money to really get noticed.

Don’t feel like I’m trying to rob you of your lunch money. Paying to promote and widely distribute your video doesn’t have to cost a lot. With some of the options out there, you can set a very modest budget, or if you have the marketing budget, you can go really big. Figure out what works for you by checking out some of these awesome ways to promote your videos.

YouTube TrueView Ads

I’m starting with YouTube first because, well, YouTube. Your videos are all already in your own channel on YouTube. But then what? There are an insane number of videos on that site, so how do you get people to check out yours?

Through YouTube TrueView Ads. All you have to do is set up a Google AdWords account to create an online video campaign. Decide your budget and target audience, and don’t worry about any contract because TrueView Ads can be started or stopped at any time. And, best of all, you pay only when the ad pointing people to your video works! Let me explain…

Keep WatchingTrueView InStream ads play before the start of a monetized YouTube video. The viewer sees five seconds of your video, and then can decide if they’re interested enough to keep watching, or if they want to skip it. Someone who clicks away is not interested in your content, but someone who watches at least 30 seconds could be a real lead. That’s why you only pay for the ad if more than 30 seconds is watched.

TrueView InDisplay ads appear to a video’s viewer as a thumbnail and text on the right-hand “Recommended” pane. Again, you only pay per view.

These YouTube ads can be targeted to the right audiences in three useful ways:

  • Video remarketing targets an ad to YouTubers who have already checked out your channel. If they’ve watched, liked, or commented on one of your videos they’re probably interested in your content, so you can keep engaging them with ads to make subscribers and–hopefully–customers out of them.
  • With placement targeting, you can show your ad to YouTubers who are enjoying channels that are similar to yours.
  • Interest Category targeting displays your ad to viewers who are searching for and looking at similar topics.

With TrueView ads, you have access to metrics like how many subscriptions you earned or how many views your video received through one of these ads.

Google AdWords

Let’s backtrack a little bit now. YouTube uses Google AdWords to help you promote your content. But what is Google AdWords?

Google SearchWell, it’s how your content gets displayed at the top of search results when anyone googles keywords related to your content. You can send people to your video hub or a video you’ve posted on YouTube. You can target these search result ads to people in a certain geographic area, so you can decide if you want to attract locals or people from across the world. And, similar to YouTube, you only pay if someone clicks on your ad! There’s no contract, and you can set any amount you’re willing to budget for this type of promotion. Google AdWords also works on any device, whether someone’s searching on a laptop, tablet, or phone.

Don’t forget analytics! AdWords comes with up-to-the-minute tracking, so if something isn’t working quite right, you can pull it or adjust it as needed to make sure you’re getting the best bang for your buck.

Yahoo’s Bing Ads

Want to make sure your video marketing content pops up in all three of the top search engines? Add Yahoo’s Bing Ads to the list. Bing Ads work just like Google AdWords, right down to the pay-per-click cost. It’s a great way to make sure that no matter how people are searching, they’ll find you!

Facebook Ads

Facebook is a great way to reach customers when they’re socially connecting to what matters to them. You just need to set up a page for your brand where you can post videos (and other marketing content). Then you can create an ad that can target audiences in three ways:

  • LikesFind lookalike audiences that are similar to those awesome customers who already follow your page.
  • You can also target audiences through their interests by displaying ads to those who like or follow pages that are similar to yours.
  • Finally, Facebook ads can even be used to target audiences based on what they do on other websites outside of Facebook. This kind of partner category targeting figures out what that person is into, and then sends them an ad directing them to your community page filled with all your branded and audience-tailored videos.


Yes, if you’ve got a great video and you want to promote it, you can do that on Twitter, too. Since it’s such a widely used social network, it’s a great way to expand the reach of your marketing videos, whether they’re how-to’s, top-of-funnel campaign videos, or ‘trailers’ for webinars. You can use what are called Promoted Tweets.

Twitter users would see your promoted tweet in Search Results both for a relevant topic or a Promoted Trend. It would also be visible in a user’s timeline if your ad is relevant to them. It would, of course, also show up in your own branded page as well. Don’t worry about annoying all your potential leads because if someone isn’t interested in what you’re promoting, they can dismiss your ad from their timeline. And, you can check out how your promoted tweets are doing through the analytics that Twitter offers.

The cost of promotion on Twitter works a little differently from the previously listed solutions. Twitter uses a bidding system. You specify the maximum amount you want to pay for specific actions that you want Twitter users to take on your ad. For example, if you want to drive users to your website, you will pay the amount you bid each time someone accesses your website from the promoted tweet. But, you will not be charged whenever your tweet is retweeted or replied to, for example. The higher your bid, the more often your ad is displayed, so you likely want to consider bidding at least the ‘recommended’ amount to make sure your campaign is competitive against other advertisers.


Facebook and Twitter are great for getting noticed when people are engaging socially. But don’t forget about LinkedIn; it’s the biggest professional networking site. People are there for business purposes, so why not advertise your business right there? You can target ads to audiences based on job title, company, industry, and more. Have an IT product, for example? There are countless IT professionals you can target with ads. You can use text-based ads to drive people back to your video hub or website, or you can even post video ads! LinkedIn suggests you try promoting free trials and demos, and include calls-to-action like ‘Download’, ‘Try’, and ‘Sign Up’.

Like the previously discussed solutions, there is no contract, you can stop any time, and you pay only when someone clicks on your ad. Then you know you’re getting real benefit out of each dollar you spend on promotion. There is one thing to keep in mind, however: The fees for LinkedIn ads are higher than Facebook and Twitter. LinkedIn ads can potentially provide better targeting, but you’ll pay more for it!

If you’re looking to go the extra mile beyond simply sharing your marketing videos, consider using any of these the paid promotional options, and let your ads start generating leads for you. But definitely don’t ignore all the great ways you can promote your videos for free; check out the Video Marketing Institute’s Lesson on promoting your video content.

Video Marketing Institute

Emily Ross