Creative Excellence Guide for Demand Gen Campaigns

A deep dive on building stunning ads that create and convert demand.

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Best Practices logoDemand Gen campaigns connect your brand with audiences across Google’s visual surfaces—YouTube, YouTube Shorts, Discover, and Gmail—using relevant creatives that spur action at the right moment. Among people who discover new products on YouTube or Google, 86% say they took action after using those platforms.1 To capture these actions, it's important to create high-quality visual experiences that draw the eye and grab attention. 

Follow the guide below for tips on creating compelling and impactful ads for Demand Gen. 

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Use a combination of videos & images

  • Engage audiences at different parts of the decision journey by telling a cohesive story about your brand with a combination of video and image creatives.
    • Drive reach and engagement - Using a combination of videos and images, you’ll be able to maximize your reach across all available inventory and formats within your campaigns.  

      Question mark iconWHY IT MATTERS

      On average, advertisers who run both video and image ads with Demand Gen campaigns see 6% more conversions per dollar than those running image-only ads.2

      Example videos & images advertising Galaxy Watch5


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Provide Google AI with the right assets

  • Demand Gen campaigns come with a variety of creative formats to help you fine-tune your brand storytelling, including videos, images, carousels, and more.
    • Check the guidance in asset specs and asset quality and policy requirements to ensure you’re preparing the right assets for Demand Gen.
    • Follow the rule of three—in each ad group, include at least 3 images or videos in each aspect ratio (vertical, square, and landscape) to maximize reach and engagement across all available inventory. 


      Prioritize assets that feel native to each platform. For example, when creating YouTube Shorts, prioritize vertical video that’s relatable, authentic, and connects with your audience.
      • If you don't have any videos, you can make them in the video creation tool using various templates. Additionally, Trim video can help you create shorter videos from longer clips.
    • Enhance your existing product imagery with Product Studio in the Merchant Center. It’s an easy way for you to update your product images, making them relevant for a variety of customers, product offers, and ad formats.

Google Ads Tutorials: Video creation in Google Ads


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Use high-quality, relevant visuals

  • Use high-quality, high-resolution videos and images to build brand trust and inspire customer action.
  • When using image ads, make sure to use high-resolution, compelling images with clear subjects. For videos, follow ABCD creative guidance, and repeat the CTA to ensure it’s echoed in the voiceover and overlaid graphics. 


    Start by reusing high-performing, inspirational imagery from existing social platforms to save time and showcase your brand at its best. Then, continue optimizing your creatives to improve relevance on YouTube and Google.

  • If you’re a retailer, you can use product feeds to tailor your ads based on customers’ interest. Upload aspirational short text and images to your Google Merchant Center catalog to drive deeper consideration.

    Question mark iconWHY IT MATTERS

    On average, advertisers see 33% more conversions at a similar cost per action (CPA) by adding product feeds to Demand Gen campaigns.3

Example product feed


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Evaluate and optimize performance

  • Adopt a test-and-learn strategy as you fine-tune creatives for your unique audiences and goals. Check the insights in reporting tools to make informed decisions about creative optimization.
    • Keep an eye on ad strength to understand how well you’ve built your ads to our specs. Once campaigns go live, review the engagement metrics (e.g. click-through rates) in asset reports to identify your top-performing assets, then swap out lower performers with new variations—make sure to aim for both quality and quantity.
    • Review segment by ad format reporting to further diagnose how your ads are performing across key formats: YouTube Shorts, in-stream, and in-feed.

Screenshot of segment by ad format reporting in the Google Ads UI

  • Run A/B experiments for Demand Gen to test the effectiveness of your creatives across different surfaces by creating head-to-head tests in a clean environment.



1. Google/Ipsos, Video & Social Ad Impact Study, July 2023-August 2023, online survey, n=13328 US, UK, BR, FR, DE, IT, JP online users 18-54 who use social apps/sites monthly or more often (social apps/sites: Discover, YouTube, YouTube Shorts, Gmail, Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, X, Snapchat). 
2. Google data, Global, Aug 22-Sept 18, 2023.
3. Google data, Global, Nov 01-Dec 31, 2023. 


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