101 Center was new. Not “I want one” new, but “who are you” new. They were developing a product that was the first of its kind in a location that wasn’t known for lavish apartments, and they quickly needed a wide variety of people to know several things about them. Not only did they need to announce themselves as the coolest thing coming to Arlington since some guy named Jerry built a stadium there, but they needed to build a foundation of awareness for their three biggest competitive advantages. They contacted us to help them with a 4-week campaign that would do that in a way that was different enough to produce valuable engagement from a crowd used to seeing big messages.

YouTube pre-roll immediately worked its way into our conversations. The platform was perfect for achieving 101 Center’s goals, but few marketers are using it effectively. With an average user session of at least 40 minutes and an 18-34 year-old reach larger than any cable network in the country, our challenge was to utilize YouTube in a way that would make people actually want to watch our ads instead of skipping them in 5 seconds.

The solution was to embrace those 5 seconds. We wrote, filmed, edited, and distributed 6 different videos that were focused on getting a very specific message out of the way loudly and quickly within the first 5 seconds. After that, we rewarded the viewer with some interesting endings. This strategy resulted in crazy numbers. The average pre-roll ad has a view rate of 15%. Ours were viewed over 25% of the time they were served. We’ll let you check out the rest of the results that this 4-week campaign produced below.

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