About targeting for video campaigns

To provide a comprehensive and consolidated view of your Audiences and make audience management and optimisation simpler, you’ll see the following improvements in Google Ads:

  • New audience reporting
    Detailed reporting about audience demographics, segments and exclusions is now consolidated in one place, the 'Audiences' tab within the left page navigation menu. You can also easily manage your audiences from this report page. Learn more about audience reporting
  • New terms
    We’re using new terms on your Audience report and throughout Google Ads. For example, 'audience types' (these include similar, custom, in-market and affinity) are now referred to as audience segments and 'remarketing' is now referred to as 'your data'. Learn more about the updates to audience terms and phrases

Video campaigns run on YouTube and across the web through Google Ads. By targeting your video campaigns on YouTube and Google video partners, you can advertise to people at moments that matter. With a wide variety of targeting methods available to you, such as demographic groups, interests, placements and your data segments, you can reach specific or niche audiences based on who they are, what they're interested in and what content they're viewing.

Available targeting methods for video campaigns

Audience targeting methods

Audience targeting methods let you define who you want to reach. Audiences are groups of people with specific interests, intents and demographics, as estimated by Google. These include:

  • Demographic groups: Choose the age, gender, parental status or household income of the audience that you want to reach.
  • Detailed demographics: Reach users based on additional broad, shared traits, such as students, homeowners or new parents.
  • Interests: Pick from available audience categories to reach people interested in certain topics, even when they may be visiting pages about other topics. Learn more about audiences
    • Affinity segments: Raise brand awareness and drive consideration with your video ads by reaching people who already have a strong interest in relevant topics.
    • Custom affinity segments: With custom affinity segments, you can create audiences that are more tailored to your brands, compared to our broad, TV-like affinity segments. For example, rather than reaching 'Sports Fans', a running shoe company may want to reach 'Avid Marathon Runners' instead.
    • Life events: Reach potential customers on YouTube and Gmail when purchase behaviour shifts and brand preferences change during life milestones, like moving, graduating from university or getting married.
    • In-market segments: Select from these audiences to find customers who are researching products and actively considering buying a service or product like those you offer.
    • Custom segments: Built with performance advertisers in mind, custom segments allow you to reach viewers as they’re making a purchase decision based on the keywords that they’ve recently searched on Google.com.
  • Your data segments: Reach more viewers across YouTube and Google video partners based on their past interactions with your videos, video ads or YouTube channel after linking your YouTube channel to your Google Ads account. You can also show ads to people who’ve interacted with your website or mobile app.
  • Customer Match: Customer Match lets you use your first-party online and offline data to reach and re-engage with your customers across YouTube and Google video partners. Learn more about Customer Match
  • Similar segments: Similar segments is a targeting feature based on first-party data lists (usually your data segments or Customer Match segments) that helps you expand the reach of your best-performing audiences by targeting new users with similar characteristics to your data segments or Customer Match segments.

Content targeting methods

If you target or exclude certain YouTube music artist channels, you’ll have to verify which videos will be included. Learn more

Content targeting methods let you define where you want your ads to show. These include:

  • Placements: Target channels, videos, apps, websites or placements within websites. For example, you can target an entire high-traffic blog or just the homepage of a popular news site. Placements can include:
    • YouTube channel
    • YouTube videos
    • Websites on the Google Display Network
    • Apps on the Google Display Network

      Note: When you add Google Display Network placements, your ad may still run in all eligible locations on YouTube. When you add YouTube placements, your ad may still run in all eligible locations across the Google Display Network.

      If you have 'Video partners on the Display Network' selected under 'Networks' and you add Google Display Network placements only, your ads may still show on YouTube.

  • Topics: Target your video ads to specific topics on YouTube and the Google Display Network. Topic targeting lets you reach a broad range of videos, channels and websites related to the topics that you select. For example, if you target the 'Automotive' topic, then your ad will show on YouTube to people watching videos about cars.
  • Keywords: Depending on your video ad format, you can show your video ads based on words or phrases (keywords) related to a YouTube video, YouTube channel or type of website that your audience is interested in.
  • Devices: Target users using computers, smart phones, mobile devices and TV screen devices like Chromecast.

For video ad groups using placement targeting only: If you’re targeting placements solely on YouTube or the Display Network, your ads are now eligible to run on both.
Existing ad groups without targeting are automatically paused as a one-time exception to ensure that they don't run ads you don't intend to show. Going forwards, manually pause ad groups that aren’t ready to show ads. Learn more about how to pause or resume your ad groups
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