Finding the right YouTube ad agency is no joke. You’ve chosen a partner, and their approach seems okay, but have you been really getting everything you should out of them?

With social media advertising becoming a larger phenomenon, especially through video ads, competition is extremely high. So it might be time to reevaluate the YouTube advertising company you’re currently working with.

To achieve the best results, you should work with the most knowledgeable social media advertising agency to make sure your campaign is meeting the right standards and being optimized for maximum effectiveness.

We’ve put together a list of questions you should ask to determine if it’s time to walk the YouTube advertising path holding a different set of hands.

Related: How to choose a social media advertising agency


1. Does your social media ad agency follow brand-safety parameters?

First and foremost, are you fully confident that your YouTube ads aren’t being run alongside content that doesn’t align with your company’s values? Are you sure your ads were managed properly so they won't run beside videos that could be offensive to potential consumers or inappropriate to viewers in general?

There’s a strategic way of ensuring this does not happen — negative targeting. It allows your YouTube ad agency to block video topics you don’t want to be associated with your brand. Account-level controls make it easy to manage brand safety standards for your campaigns run on AdWords for video.

You don’t want to take the chances with a YouTube agency that doesn’t do much regarding controlling where your video ads are placed. Careful observation is key to identify both where your video ad is sent out and who it brings back in.

Which leads us to another question: Are you positive your ads are even being shown on YouTube? Could your social media advertising agency be placing them elsewhere, or lack the strategic knowledge to target your campaign appropriately?

Your YouTube agency should be able to answer that and tell you where and with what type of content your ads are being placed.


2. How does your social advertising agency optimize your campaigns?

How often does your YouTube ad agency check your campaigns and how they’re performing? Once a day, twice maybe? Well, the peak hours of the internet are during a business’s off hours, from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. The best way to go about optimizing a campaign is having it under 24/7 watch.

An advertising campaign isn’t something you can check on every once in awhile to see how things are going. Around the clock observation is what’s going to drive your campaign to meet those KPIs you set. It allows for budgets to be shifted over to the targets that matter most and are gaining the most traction.

Another question: How is your targeting broken up, if at all? YouTube ad groups should be as narrowly focused as possible, ensuring you’re reaching the right audience for your ads and products.

Your groups should be meticulous to yield the best results and most actionable insights. These insights are what fuel the team behind your campaign to improve and optimize it continuously.

An AI-powered YouTube software can be a valuable resource to help you create an hypergranular targeting plan. It not only helps you identify audiences you wouldn't have considered before, but will shift your budget to the best-performing segments, which will increase performance and reduce costs.

Related article 6 tips for YouTube advertising success As the second largest search engine behind Google, YouTube represents a big opportunity for social media advertisers. Read more


3. Does your advertising agency update you every step of the way?

With YouTube being a source that’s constantly available to its users, it’s not like sending out a weekly memo with updates from the week before. There are constant changes or improvements to your campaigns as they’re being run.

So how often does your YouTube agency send you these updates? Are they always available to answer any questions you have? It’s important that your social media advertising agency offers complete transparency the entire way through your campaign.

Choose a YouTube video marketing partner that provides a 360 view of the entire media buying process so you’re never left in the dark. The best social media ad companies are those that update you every time something changes in your campaign, and offer proactive solutions and guidance on next steps.

Transparency is essential to any and all work done by your agency. Does your YouTube agency add you to the account so you can see everything that is being done in your campaign? Do you have a direct line of communication to the team members on your campaign and access to experts, such as data scientists who can crunch all of your numbers?

If your agency keeps you at a distance, that is a major red flag and a sign it might be time to change your YouTube ad partner.


4. Do you have real YouTube specialists working on your campaign?

That is, Premier Google Partners who are specialized in video ads? These partners have been trained in advanced concepts for creating, managing, measuring and optimizing video advertising on YouTube.

To earn a badge, social media advertising agencies need to prove they not only have a team with the knowledge to build great campaigns, but also a record of achieving strong results with campaigns that increase client and company growth.

If your YouTube agency can’t guarantee a certain CPV, you should be considering other options. It’s important to know what you’re buying to ensure your goals will be met and that you’re spending the appropriate amount of money.

Also, be attentive to your social media advertising company's tools and what they can add to your business. Do they use the most advanced technologies in ad tech, such as machine learning and AI? Do they leverage deep data to take your campaigns further? If your YouTube agency is still running your campaigns off of sticky notes, it is time to look for a new partner.

Related: Understanding your YouTube campaign's view through rate


5. How does your social media ad agency make money?

A crucial question to ask is how your YouTube agency makes their money. There are basically two ways most agencies can charge you. They will either charge a fee in addition to the management services or add a markup fee as part of the total budget or media spend.

To explain the first of these strategies a bit further, an agency may estimate how much time will be needed to meet the performance expected by the client and define that price, but add billable items unrelated to your campaign cost. These additional charges are made to ensure profit for items such as salaries, benefits, rent, snacks, etc.

The second strategy is a bit more practical. Advertising agencies will charge by adding a markup fee as part of the total budget (a $100,000 budget would mean, for example, $75,000 in media and $25,000 in fees) or as a markup on media spend (an extra percentage on top of the $100,000 in media spend).

Moving forward, there are two important questions to keep in mind when reviewing the YouTube advertising agency you’re working with:

  • How are you paying your social media advertising company? Is it a percent of media/budget or is it a fixed cost?
  • If it’s a percent of media, is there a guaranteed price with each campaign?

Consider the answers to both of these questions to determine how well your agency works with you and your budget. Is the price they’re charging too good to be true? Or are you suddenly wondering what other expenses, unrelated to you or your campaign, you’re paying for?

The best social media advertising agencies give you a price guarantee and are completely transparent about what goes into their fees.

Here’s to choosing the best social media ad agency

What it all boils down to is that you’re choosing the right YouTube agency for your company so that you can see the results you expect from your campaigns. The best YouTube ad agency drives results and meets every goal you’ve set. Follow the steps above to understand where your social media ad agency stands.

Taylor Schaller

Taylor Schaller

Taylor is the Social Media and Content Marketing Intern at Strike Social. A graduate from The University of Alabama, she is now an MBA candidate at Loyola University Chicago.