About video ad sequencing

With video ad sequencing, you can tell your product or brand story by showing people a series of videos in the order that you define. You can use a video ad sequence campaign to build interest, reinforce a message, or create a unifying theme. This article explains how video ad sequencing works, what type of bidding strategies and ad formats you can use, and how you can view the results of your campaign. Learn more about how to create a sequence campaign and sequence campaign troubleshooting

How it works

A video ad sequence is made up of a series of video ads that you’d like to show to a person. Each sequence campaign is made up of a series of “steps.” Within each step of a sequence is an ad group and a video ad. Most of a sequence’s settings are selected at the campaign level—such as a bidding strategy and targeting—but you’ll select your sequencing rules, ad format, and bid within each of your sequence’s steps. Viewers will see your sequence campaign once it's running and the ads will be shown in the order that you have defined. 

Depending on the settings you choose when adding sequence steps, a viewer’s progress through your sequence is based on impressions, views or skips. For example, for a person to move to the second step in your sequence, an impression must be counted for the video in the first step. (if you choose impression as the condition to move to the next step). 

Bidding strategies include the following: 

  • Target CPM (Recommended)
    • With Target CPM, we optimize bids to show your entire sequence campaign to your audience, which can help you get a higher sequence completion rate. 
  • Maximum CPV

Ad formats include the following: 

  • Skippable in-stream ads
  • Non-skippable in-stream ads
  • Bumper ads
  • A combination of the above

The bidding strategy you select will determine which ad formats you can use. View the table below to see which formats are available for each bidding type.

Bidding type Available formats
Target CPM (tCPM)

Skippable in-stream ads
Non-skippable in-stream ads
Bumper ads
A combination of the above

Maximum CPV (CPV) Skippable in-stream ads

Sequence campaigns can only run on YouTube. To help you find the right audience, sequence campaigns let you choose Audience and Demographic targeting, however sequence campaigns don't allow targeting with keywords, placements, or topics. Furthermore, Audience and Demographic targeting, as well as exclusions, can only be set at the campaign level.

Furthermore, traffic estimates aren’t available in video ad sequencing campaigns

Reporting for video ad sequences

You can see different metrics for your sequence campaign, such as impressions, views, and clicks at the campaign and ad group (sequence step) levels, as with other Video campaigns. These metrics can be seen per step when you view your ad group-level reporting.

You can also use the “Sequence ” path column to review each step in your sequence, the interaction required to progress to the next step, and the step’s ad. Interaction types include impressions, views, and skips. 

How people progress through your sequence

Typically, your potential customers will progress through your sequence campaign, seeing the first video ad of your sequence, then the video ad for the next step based on the previous impression or interaction with the first step and continuing until the sequence is complete. 

In some cases, people will progress through your sequence campaign by seeing the next video in a sequence step when it appears in a different campaign. By following the sequence by video ad, regardless of the campaign that serves it, more people will complete the sequence at a lower cost to you. Keep in mind that the video ad’s targeting must be the same in both campaigns in order to serve as part of the sequence campaign. 

Keep in mind that frequency capping for sequences limits the amount of times people will see your sequences to 1 sequence per person in a 30 day period.

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