From Static to Video — Why Video Ads Dominate Digital Marketing Today


n today's fast-paced digital landscape, advertising has evolved to become more dynamic and engaging than ever before. At the forefront of this evolution is video advertising, a powerful tool for brands to connect with their audiences in a meaningful and compelling manner. Whether you're familiar with the ins and outs of digital marketing or are just diving into the online realm, this article aims to shed light on the world of video ads, how they stack up against other digital marketing tactics, and their undeniable importance in modern-day advertising. And if you're wondering who can help you navigate this space effectively, Crafted has got your back.

What is paid advertising?

Let’s start with understanding what “paid advertising” really means. Paid advertising is an online strategy where advertisers pay to display their promotional content to a specific audience. It includes everything from ads that pop up on your Google search results to the sponsored posts on your social media feeds. Paid ads target consumers based on their interests or intent. By focusing on a particular group, businesses have a higher potential of generating qualified leads and increasing conversions. These ads often hinge on certain keywords in search engines or are positioned on websites that align with the ad's products or services.

Types of paid ads

The digital sphere boasts a plethora of paid advertising tactics, each with its unique advantages.

1. Paid Search: Often associated with platforms like Google Ads, paid search involves bidding on keywords to appear prominently in search engine results. When someone types in a related keyword, your ad can appear at the top of the search results, driving direct traffic to your website. Companies pay to get prime real estate on search pages.

2. Programmatic Display Ads: These ads are automated, real-time auction ad buys. Using sophisticated algorithms, these ads determine which ads to display to a user in milliseconds, ensuring the right message reaches the right person at the right time. They can appear as banners or other ad formats across various websites, tailored based on the user's browsing history and preferences.

3. Social Ads: As the name suggests, these are ads placed on social media platforms. Whether it's Facebook, Instagram, or TikTok, these platforms provide a goldmine of user data, allowing brands to target their audience based on demographics, interests, behaviors, and more. It's a space where brands can engage with users in a more casual, yet impactful, setting. Brands can pop their ads right in between your friends’ vacation pics and meme shares. Social ads include both static images and video ad placements. 

Having covered the various types of paid ads, including social ads, it's time to zoom in on a specific and influential type of social advertisement: video ads. Let's explore.

What are video ads? 

Video ads are dynamic, visual messages designed to captivate and engage viewers. They're not just traditional commercials; they're often interactive, tailored to a specific audience, and optimized for the platform they're on. Brands utilize them not just to promote products but also to communicate their values, missions, and narratives. With platforms like TikTok gaining popularity, the focus has shifted towards bite-sized, impactful videos. These clips are memorable, easily shareable, and have the power to go viral. Whether it's introducing a new product, offering a tutorial, or simply making viewers laugh, video ads are the heartbeat of modern digital advertising.

Why are video ads important?

Video is undeniably the king of digital content. A majority of consumers gravitate towards video over other content types. Imagine a bustling digital marketplace where brands clamor for attention. In this scenario, video ads are the eloquent speakers, instantly captivating an audience and leaving a lasting impact. 

The stats speak for themselves. A whopping 73% of consumers devour short-form videos on mobile devices. Moreover, 66% emphasize that this form of content is the most engaging. Clearly, optimizing for mobile consumption is crucial. Furthermore, videos have become a primary educational tool, with two-thirds of consumers turning to them to understand a brand or product better.

The benefits of video ads are manifold:

- SEO Boost: In the vast digital ocean, videos serve as lighthouses guiding users to your brand. Search engines prioritize pages with videos, with 55% of Google keyword searches showcasing them. Moreover, incorporating video can skyrocket organic traffic from search engine results by 157%.

- Engagement and Conversion: It's not just about getting eyes on your content; it's about sparking action. Videos consistently outperform other content types in engagement, urging users to delve deeper into what a brand offers.

- Audience Expansion: With the global reach of platforms like YouTube or TikTok, videos allow brands to transcend geographical barriers, reaching an international audience.

- Cost-Effective: Contrary to popular belief, video ads, especially those on social platforms, are cheaper than traditional advertising avenues like TV commercials.

- Instant Feedback: The real-time nature of social media allows businesses to gauge reactions instantly, facilitating quick strategy tweaks.

- The Fun Factor: Let's face it; videos are fun! They offer a respite from the endless text-heavy content, making information consumption enjoyable. 

However, like all things, video ads come with their challenges. They can be skipped, require top-tier content to truly captivate, and necessitate consistent innovation to remain fresh and relevant.

How do videos perform against other tactics? 

Vs. Paid Search: While video ads are visually engaging, paid search generally are the most efficient digital marketing tactic. In 2023, they continued to make up the bulk of marketers’ digital marketing budgets, sitting at 41.8%. Individuals using search are already interested in related products, producing higher-quality leads and increasing the likelihood of conversions. Paid search is highly targeted, allowing brands to target against keywords that are competitive, category, complementary, or branded. Paid search can also boost SEO. However, they lack the visual allure and viral potential of video ads.

Vs. Static Ads: Static ads, typically images or text, are less expensive and straightforward. They convey benefits quickly, without the need for user engagement over time. However, they often lag in reach and engagement. Video ads generally enjoy a 25% higher impression rate compared to static counterparts. 

Types of Video Ads

After understanding how video ads measure up against paid search and static ads, it's essential to delve deeper into the diverse landscape of video advertising itself. Not all video ads are created equal, and their effectiveness can greatly vary based on their type and purpose. We'll navigate through three predominant categories of video advertising: brand-generated content, the authenticity of organic social videos, and the influential realm of influencer collaborations. Let's dive in, starting with brand-generated video ads.


Brand-generated video ads, as the name suggests, are videos meticulously crafted and produced by brands themselves. This contrasts with content sourced from users or influencers and places brands in the director's seat, giving them the reins to the narrative they wish to share.


One of the significant advantages of these videos is their adaptability to various purposes. For instance, when brands are launching a new product, a well-executed video can create anticipation and excitement around it. Similarly, if there's a limited-time offer or a special discount in the offing, a dynamic video ad can effectively communicate that urgency and entice consumers to act. Beyond products and promotions, some brands use this medium to delve into their identity. This might involve sharing culture-centric content that highlights the brand's ethos or presenting a heartfelt narrative about the brand's origins and journey, establishing a deeper connection with the viewers.


However, the benefits of brand-generated video ads aren't without challenges. Their strength lies in the brand's ability to control the message and ensure consistency, coupled with the fact that the content's ownership remains solely with the brand. This ownership means brands have full flexibility over its distribution, usage, and modifications.

Yet, the challenge arises when striving for authenticity. A brand's voice and the creative direction it chooses can sometimes come across as less genuine compared to, say, a personal recommendation. It's worth noting that a significant majority of consumers, about 92%, trust recommendations from others more than brand messages. This suggests an inherent challenge for brands in making their messages resonate genuinely with their target audience.

Furthermore, the road to creating these videos is neither cheap nor quick. High-quality production involves substantial costs, including state-of-the-art equipment, skilled personnel, suitable locations, and meticulous post-production efforts. This investment in both time and money can be considerably more than simpler static content.

While brand-generated video ads present a unique opportunity for brands to convey their stories and offerings directly, they also necessitate a thoughtful approach to ensure authenticity, engagement, and cost-effectiveness.

User-Generated Content (Organic Social)

User-Generated Content (UGC) has revolutionized the digital landscape. At its core, UGC is precisely what it sounds like: content created and shared by regular users or consumers. Unlike meticulously designed campaigns from established brands, UGC is characterized by its organic nature and spontaneity. While UGC encompasses a range of content forms, including reviews, comments, tweets, and photos, our focus here is exclusively on videos.


The appeal of UGC, particularly in video format, is multifold. Foremost among its advantages is trustworthiness. Research indicates that a staggering 70-80% of online users prefer to bypass paid advertisements, directing their attention instead to organic content. This inclination isn't random. UGC, by its very definition, is produced by real people. It's not polished or curated with a marketing agenda but is instead an authentic reflection of individuals' experiences, opinions, and creativity. This inherent authenticity resonates with viewers, rendering UGC a powerful tool for engagement.

Moreover, UGC presents an opportunity for brands to tap into a continuous stream of content. By fostering a community or encouraging customers to share their experiences, brands can source UGC videos consistently. Of course, this comes with the necessary condition of obtaining the right permissions and rights.


However, with all its merits, UGC does pose challenges for brands. The primary limitation lies in control, or rather, the lack of it. UGC doesn't always align with a brand's messaging or image. It's raw, unfiltered, and might not communicate all the facets a brand wishes to highlight. Hence, while UGC can enhance relatability and trust, it requires brands to relinquish some degree of control over the narrative.

In summary, UGC, especially in the realm of organic social video, offers brands a genuine and trusted avenue of connection with their audience. Yet, this avenue demands a careful balancing act between authenticity and brand consistency.

Influencer Content

Influencer video ads have emerged as a compelling middle ground in the world of advertising. By definition, influencer content is the offspring of a paid collaboration between a brand and an influencer or creator. These collaborations weave the line between the curated nature of brand-generated content and the raw authenticity of user-generated content (UGC).


The power of influencer video ads lies in their unique balance between authenticity and control. When executed with precision, influencer content can mirror the genuineness of organic UGC. This is particularly true when brands strategically partner with microinfluencers. These influencers, often with a niche yet engaged following, produce content that feels genuine and unforced. Consequently, viewers often perceive their promotional content as a natural extension of their regular posts rather than overt advertising.

This hybrid nature of influencer content is what sets it apart. Brands can relay specific messages and narratives, but they can do so through the authentic lens of a trusted creator. The influencer’s personality becomes an integral part of the brand’s narrative, bringing both relatability and reach.

Moreover, influencer content is scalable. Depending on a brand's budget, marketing goals, and target audience, they can partner with multiple influencers across different platforms, expanding their reach and message consistency.


However, the world of influencer advertising is not without its pitfalls. The success of influencer collaborations hinges heavily on alignment. Brands must invest time and effort in selecting influencers whose values, audience, and content style mirror their own. An ill-matched partnership can easily be spotted by discerning consumers, eroding the trust both in the influencer and the brand.

To encapsulate, influencer video ads offer a dynamic blend of brand messaging and organic authenticity. When approached with thoughtfulness and strategy, they can be a game-changer in a brand's advertising toolkit.

Maximizing the Potential of Video Ads

The digital age positions video content as the crown jewel. Success in video advertising hinges on strategy. Regardless of platform specifics, there are universal truths to crafting impactful videos. It's pivotal to have clear objectives. Is your goal brand awareness or boosting sales? Tailoring your content based on objectives - be it awareness, consideration, conversion, or retention - is paramount.

For upper-funnel objectives, the emphasis is on brand visibility. This stage involves casting a wide net with content that educates or entertains, paired with soft calls-to-action. Metrics such as video views and engagement rates become crucial indicators of success.

The lower-funnel, however, is action-oriented. Here, diving deep into product specifics, showcasing testimonials, and using compelling CTAs is key. Retargeting strategies can also be employed to nudge potential customers closer to conversion.

Regardless of the funnel stage, understanding your target audience is essential. It ensures your message resonates, engages, and prompts desired actions. Furthermore, continuous iteration and A/B testing, especially of creative elements, can refine your approach. From having a strong hook to showcasing genuine testimonials, every element contributes to the video's success.

For a deeper dive into mastering video ads, visit this article.

To wrap up, after immersing ourselves in the dynamic world of video advertising, it's evident that videos have become the centerpiece in the realm of digital marketing. They not only spotlight a brand's offerings but also weave intricate narratives that resonate on a human level. Brands can use video to share their story, showcase authenticity, or simply entertain. With platforms like TikTok or YouTube offering unprecedented reach, the possibilities are boundless. Yet, as with all tools, effective use is key. It's about striking the right balance, understanding your audience, and delivering content that's both engaging and genuine. And remember, it's not just about the view count but the impact you leave behind. 

If you're looking to navigate this dynamic space, having the right partner, like Crafted, can make all the difference. Reach out to for more information. Dive in, explore, and let your brand story shine through video.

Oct 30, 2023
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