Google have recently created and launched a new certification exam that can be taken within the Google Partners portal – the Video Advertising Advanced exam. Google state that this new exam covers “basic and advanced YouTube and Google Display Network concepts, including topics such as ad formats, targeting, and reporting”.
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This new exam should not to be considered as a component of the AdWords certification exams. Any candidate wishing to take this exam must already be individually qualified in AdWords (this means that you must have already passed the Advertising Fundamentals exam plus one of the advanced exams, such as Search Advanced or Display Advanced) before the exam becomes available within the portal to take.
The exam contains 74 questions, and you are given 90 minutes to answer them. You will need to achieve at least an 85% score in order to pass, which is considerably higher than the score required for the AdWords advanced exams. In my opinion, 90 minutes is more than ample time to complete this test. Your score will be immediately delivered upon answering question 74 with a percentage figure and a “you answered **/75 correctly” figure too. If you don’t pass the exam on your first attempt, you will need to resit the exam after seven days. If you do pass, the exam will remain valid for one year and you can print a certificate of achievement to hang on your wall. 🙂
Know Your Stuff
Don’t fall victim to the thought process that you have a free pass to acing this exam because you already know about Display advertising …that’s just a fast road to disappointment. You will need to prepare for this test specifically by using the Video advertising learning material, and more essentially having hands on experience of running video advertising campaigns. It’s simply not enough to go reading the learning material and then think you are instantly ready to take this exam.
What To Expect From The Exam
There are a mixture of single best answer questions are True/False questions. As with all Google exams, they are famously worded trickily, and you will need to fully read and digest the question and answer options before making your choice. I’ve read comment threads where many exam candidates have expressed the opinion that some of the answer options are very close to each other, making it hard to decide what indeed is the best answer.
The exam has a big focus on AdWords for Video, and there are quite a few questions asking specifics about the TrueView ad formats. Expect to be tested on where they can appear and how they work. You will be quizzed on additional features such as call-to action overlays and companion banners. You must know how and at what point an advertiser would be charged. Essentially, you must understand that Ad Gallery is completely different to AdWords for video in how it is used and what can be achieved.
Another hot topic is targeting and targeting groups. If you are not already familiar with these, don’t fall into the trap of assuming that they work like ad groups, they don’t. There are many questions in the exam related to different types (or methods) of targeting, how targeting methods are applied within a targeting group, the number of targeting groups that can be created within a campaign, and how targeting groups can be assigned to ads etc. It really is a hot topic that features prominently in the exam.
Expect to answer questions about the benefits of linking your YouTube account with AdWords. It’s not enough to know that you can do it, know how to do it and the reasons for doing it too.
There are also quite a few questions specifically about remarketing on YouTube, and I cannot put enough emphasis on this next point: make sure you know this inside out! In my opinion, reading the learning material alone will not prepare you for the questions you will be asked during the exam. Make sure you fully utilize your AdWords account at this point, so you know exactly what can and cannot be achieved through remarketing.
There are plenty of questions about the benefits of YouTube Analytics, and the types of reports and statistics that can be accessed through the tool. You must also be aware of what statistics are available in AdWords for video campaigns, and understand specifically when and why you should focus on certain metrics.
Finally, expect to see questions about reservations based campaigns, the formats available, how they are priced, and how reports can be accessed.
Video Exam Recap: Our Top Tips
- Thoroughly read the learning material provided.
- Apply everything you are reading to an AdWords for Video campaign.
- Explore every part of the AdWords for video interface, YouTube and YouTube Analytics, leave no stone unturned.
- Visit YouTube and watch videos, (no it’s not shirking!) Pay particular attention to the different ad types you can see, and determine which formats are relevant to AdWords for video etc. What else can you see? Are there companion banners, call-to-action overlays?
- If there is even a hint of a suggestion to link accounts or to complete and action in the learning material, do it. Its a massive boost to aid learning when you actually complete the process rather than just reading about it.