The Secrets To YouTube Advertising with John Belcher

YouTube is an amazing advertising platform and the video consumption is incredible. However, there are a lot of question marks in people’s minds about YouTube and YouTube advertising. John Belcher of AdSkills has a brilliant strategy for how you can advertise to get more subscribers to your channel. AdSkills is a company that not only teaches people how to place ads and make money placing ads, but also helps to certify ad buyers. John says people consume and appreciate the products you put in front of them, and they don’t mind seeing ads there because it’s not in their personal space, unlike Facebook. His team help put together really good ones and make sure that the ads show up to the right people. John shares some of the most important things people should know about YouTube and YouTube advertising.

As promised at the end of our last episode, we are going to take a deeper dive in this episode again with our same guest, John Belcher from AdSkills. If you’re joining this episode for the very first time and you missed that last episode, I’m going to strongly suggest you pause this one. Go back and do that one first because it gives you such broad principles on advertising in general, media buying, making sure that your cost effective. John is a Google AdWords guy. That’s how he cut his teeth. He knows how it works and everything. Remember, YouTube is owned by Google, so this is critically important in the process of things. We personally have our own experience of having many of our podcasts and blog posts from those podcasts for us and for our clients being boosted when the video is inputted in it.

Usually, it’s a fast start boost. When I say boost, meaning they’re joining on the first page of Google. They’re Google ranked quickly. That’s one aspect of why we’ve been a big advocate of inserting videos into your blog posts for your podcast and doing all of that. John has a brilliant strategy here because what we’ve not been so successful with, is getting people to subscribe to your channel and just watch it on YouTube. We haven’t really seen a lot of that going. We get people to subscribe on iTunes, Stitcher and other places to our podcasts and come to our websites, listen to the podcast and do all of those things. We’ve not been able to get that successfully happening with either our videocasters or our podcasters in and of itself. He’s got a brilliant plan for how you might advertise to get more subscribers to your channel. What we have to remember is we’re going to YouTube because we have a plan. We want to learn something we’re going at a how-to. It’s not all that different from how we search on podcasts. It has a very similar synergy. Do we really want to derail people from listening or watching? Let’s go to that interview.


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The Secrets To YouTube Advertising with John Belcher

John, we’re very excited to speak with you again. This time in more detail about YouTube. I think that there are a lot of question marks in people’s minds about YouTube and advertising on YouTube. I think we’re in that camp ourselves right now, we don’t know what we don’t know. I don’t even know exactly what to ask you. Why don’t you start sharing what you think are some of the most important things people should know about YouTube and then maybe we’ll have some questions along the way as things emerge.

YouTube is an amazing advertising platform. It’s my absolute favorite, it’s the only one that I actually do still run traffic for people because I love it. I love the opportunity to scale and how engaged people are. Video consumption is incredible. Just watching people consume, how much they love it and how they really appreciate the products that you’re putting in front of them. I recently had someone describe YouTube advertising. We asked them if they mind YouTube ads, if you see 100 of them and you can’t skip them, everyone says we don’t like them. The answer I’ve gotten from a lot of people is if I see a good one, I really enjoy it. We asked them if they feel the same way about Facebook ads and they say no. I say, “Why is there a difference?”

They say, “On Facebook, it’s my feed but on YouTube I know I’m going to someone else’s yard. I’m playing around, so I don’t mind if there’s something over there because it’s not in my personal space.” It was a really interesting thing for me because I want to use it when I describe what I do to people. I say that you don’t like the ads you don’t like on YouTube, that’s what I do. We help put together really good ones and make sure that your ads show up to the right people. It’s cool to hear when it’s done well. People appreciate it and you can see there’s been some mega companies built off YouTube advertising. I know it’s hard for the small business person to relate, but Dollar Shave Club was just razors in a warehouse.

They’re a great video and a great problem they were solving. It may be hard for someone that’s running a barbershop or a law firm or something to relate to that. You may not have the amount of scale that the Dollar Shave Club did or Poo-Pourri. They have the best ads. It may not feel the same to you, but if you have a great problem that you can solve and you can communicate it through video, you have a great opportunity on YouTube. You don’t have to spend $10 million to make it work. You just need to think about your market and as we talked about last episode, doing customer research, understanding their problems. One of the really big exercises we do in our customer research courses is talking about an empathy map. It’s talking about what are people thinking, hearing, feeling, and saying. Those are really important to understand.

Google is everything. Everybody goes to Google to search for stuff. Share on X

Then you formulate their hell island. What’s their hell? What are they dealing with and where would they like to get to? They may not know where they like to get to. With the Dollar Shave Club, you knew that you were paying a lot for razors, but there wasn’t really another option. They were just telling you there were no other options they could help you get to have. You’re only paying $3 a month for razors. That was the piece of what’s your service can help people get from where they’re at to where they want to go? It’s really important as long as your video conveys this is how you can help someone get there. Always having proof is great. It’s a great thing that you can build into videos. You don’t have to spend $1 million to be successful on YouTube. Last time we talked about you do your keyword research and you understand what people are looking for. What’s amazing about any Google advertising platform, Google search display or YouTube, you have the ability to use the keywords that people are searching for to target your ads. From wanting to start a podcast, do you have an example of a keyword that you try to SEO for?

We do a lot with the podcast hosting. Like best podcast hosting, money making, or monetization is typically one because we combined podcast hosting and money essentially. There’s a bunch of words that circulate around that.

Podcast monetization. I’m not sure on the search volume on that. It’s not massive but I imagine it’s a really good niche. If people are trying to monetize, that means they’re interested in generating money. There may be a decent chance they’re willing to invest in something in order to get a return on that. What do we would look to do is create a video ad that calls out their problem, “Struggling to monetize your podcast? You want to watch this video.” All you’re doing in those first five seconds, we call it the punch. You’re trying to make sure that the people that you’re targeting are just going to stay and listen to what you have to say. We say you’re competing against the skip button, but the really good thing is if someone skips your ad, you don’t pay for it.

YouTube Advertising: Make sure that the people you’re targeting are going to stay and listen to what you have to say.


You’re only talking to people who are actually interested in what you’re talking about. That’s a really amazing thing about YouTube. I think people don’t understand it. They’re like, “I’m paying, and all those people are skipping.” If they skipped, you don’t pay. That’s really important to understand that you want to call it the people that you’re trying to talk to. Whatever their hell is the problem that you’re trying to help them solve. It’s a great way to do that. Podcast monetization, you’re struggling to monetize your podcast. You want to watch this video then you’re talking about the problem. A lot of people struggle to monetize their podcasts for X, Y, Z reasons. It’s really great to get emotional there. You can say, “We understand. We went through it ourselves and it was really difficult. You’re trying to figure out a way to create freedom for yourself and build this podcast and blah, blah, blah. Here are all the reasons that you’re struggling with it. Here’s what you used to have to do to monetize it, but luckily you don’t have to anymore. That’s what we’ve invented, our solution. Here’s what we do and we’ve helped X, Y, and Z people accomplish this. If you want to learn more, click here.”

Something very basic and as I said before with YouTube, you’re not going to get clicks the same way. What we often do, because people have come there to consume. The last time when I was in the show, we talked about people who are there to be educated and to be entertained. The chances that they’re clicking on things, they’re not as likely because they want to be there to consume that content. What we often do, say, “Go visit us at this website.” We can also do a tech stop Dan, so we use lead pages. There’s a tool called Lead Digits where it’s like text this particular term to this number in order to get your free lead magnet. You’ve got different ways to have call to actions to get people to your site, but if you’ve done a good job calling out those people and using the keywords that they’ve typed in, Google knows what those keywords are.

It doesn’t matter what the actual video is that you’re serving ads on. You can just serve different people who recently searched for that which makes a huge difference. It’s a really great way to go through and do that. A lot of people at this point say, “That’s all great and I’d love to do that, but it’s really hard to go through and create video content and until recently, I would have agreed with you.” That’s what I just said problem and then big hook. “I don’t have a product to sell you, but Google’s done a really nice job recently. They just came up with a program called YouTube Director Onsite. If you commit to spending $350 on YouTube, they will have a professional filmmaker get together with you and make a 30-second video ad for free. I am just dumbfounded at how Google went through with this program.”

You’re telling me that you agree to spend $350 in YouTube advertising spend, they will send someone to you to your location who’s a professional and help you record a 30-second video. To the readers, that’s worth everything right there. I guarantee you if anybody who has gone out to hire somebody to help them record a video, they’ve each spent more than $350 getting someone to just show up and forget all the other things that it cost. You’re saying, show up and record it. They’re going to edit it and give you a final cut of a video. Is this a one-time thing or just to get your foot in the door or can you do that repeatedly?

It’s a one-time thing from my understanding. It’s a very new program so we’ll see. I would imagine it’s a one-time thing because they’ve got their approved filmmakers. What I would do if I was one of those filmmakers, they had this work, do you want to shoot another one? “Here’s a coupon, so I’ll come back and do it with you again.”

Our son-in-law is a filmmaker. He’s killing it on YouTube right now, a music video. This is the deal. I pay him more and he’s my son-in-law. That’s great value for people that want to get started in this, I would think. That’s such a great offer.

Google does a very good job getting people. They're filmmakers, they're not salespeople. Share on X

It’s a huge deal. What the biggest thing that I would say is while these filmmakers, I guarantee you are greats because Google does a very good job vetting people. They’re filmmakers, they’re not salespeople. I wouldn’t imagine that most of these filmmakers are people that do a great job selling. They’re going to help you put together a script, but I don’t know if it’s going to sell you very well and if it’s going to contain what it really takes to have a successful offer. What I did is I shared with you guys our scripts. This is how we put together a 30-second script and the different pieces that we have of it. I put together an example of how I would put an ad together and then give you the templates so you can go through and do it yourself. What I would hate to see is that you go through and do everything to get your ad produced.

It’s an ad that doesn’t have a very good call to action, doesn’t tell people where to go, and doesn’t really have an offer, that for me is a bummer. That would be something that will be bad. I wanted to make sure people have something that is useful to help them go through and put together their ads. The last thing is you don’t have to spend $350 on advertising. It’s important that you’re making that commitment. The last thing I would want to see people do is go through and just waste that because they didn’t know how to advertise on TV. That’s the biggest thing. I put in there a resource, our Bulletproof YouTube Ads. That was the first course I ever created for AdSkills. It’s our number one selling course because so many people struggle with YouTube advertising. Everything we talk about, I talked about in that course, we’ll help you go through and set up your ads so you don’t waste that $350. I would hate to see that happen. That’s what we put together in their go through and review it. If you decide not to get the course, you just used the template, that’s great. I just want to see you be successful.

Many people that sought advertise on YouTube are not experts in what it takes to do it effectively. We’re sort of taking some steps here to help ensure that they don’t just throw away $350 on an experiment.

I just want to see people be successful. Something that I’ve gotten the privilege, I get to have a business that I love to do and I get to teach people. All I want to do is just make sure there are people have the chance to succeed with this because like I said in the last episode, the two things we talk about are confidence and cashflow. You have to have confidence in what you’re doing and you have to be able to make a return on it. Once you do that, you’re going to start investing more and more in your business. Back to the fun part on YouTube. I’ll just talk quickly about the different types of how you can get your ads out in front of people.

YouTube Advertising: You have to have confidence in what you’re doing and you have to be able to make a return on it.


A lot of times people are like, “I put together that one 30-seond ad professional filmmaker, do I have to do that every time?” Absolutely not. A lot of our YouTube ads or me sitting in front of my computer, I use a tool called Camtasia when I film. I’ll sit here and it’s just talking to our audience. I have a list right here. I put together all of the YouTube tutorials that I’m going to be doing. It’s three pages. Took me two hours to put this together. I created a YouTube remarketing video that said, “What’s cool about AdWords? You can say, “If people have watched one of your videos or visited your site but are not subscribed to your YouTube channel, you can serve an ad to those people.” There’s a million different ways you can cut things up. I just spent two hours putting together a list of 300 YouTube tutorials that I put together. I’m excited to teach you, but the problem is that you’re not subscribed to our channel. What we’re going to do here is, in three seconds, I’ll have a button pop up. You click on it, you’ll be subscribed. You’ll be notified whenever I put these out, cut, three, two, one, video. It shows the little button pops up, you can subscribe to the video and onto the next one. We’ve been able to get subscribers for $0.08 just to make sure that our channel continues to grow because people are going through and doing this.

It’s great because they don’t leave YouTube so that they didn’t really derail what they were doing.

It’s simple, it’s clean, click on it onto the next one, they can still watch the video that they came there for. It doesn’t have to be the super professionally and produced commercial. Whenever you’re talking to what we call a cold traffic, people who’ve never met you before, that’s a very helpful thing. That’s what that 30-second would be great for. You can choose something on your iPhone. Just make sure people know who you are or your podcast. Maybe they don’t get to see your face all the time, but if you just called out, “Just wanted to say, we really appreciate you following us. We’re going to start putting up some more content on our YouTube channel. Click here to subscribe.” You don’t have to spend a lot of money to do that.

Where you’re typically paying for a view is somewhere between $0.03 and $0.05. If you’re doing advertising on Facebook and you’re like, “That’s really expensive compared to Facebook.” You only get charged with YouTube A, when people don’t skip and B, they have to watch 30 seconds or the entire length of your video, whichever one is shorter. I think it’s that piece. Facebook, you get charged at the three to ten second mark, so you’re getting a much more qualified view with YouTube. That’s why I really tell people do not compare apples to apples, you’re going to be very upset.

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Do you think it’s very important for people advertising on YouTube to have their own YouTube channel and to be creating videos like this for them to engage to the point where they subscribed to you? Is that a key aspect of it?

You have to have a YouTube channel to advertise on Google. You don’t have to have your subscribers or any content, but you have to have a YouTube channel because the videos, the ads have to be loaded onto YouTube in order to utilize. That’s number one when it comes to the content piece, if you’re not trying to build a following on YouTube, you don’t have to do it. I do not work with companies any longer that do not have YouTube libraries. I want people to be engaging on YouTube because it has a lift effect where if you’re running ads, it will continue drive more people to your organic site or you organic YouTube channel. If you’ve got conversion set up to there, it works really well. That’s just business models of the businesses that I work with. You don’t have to have a YouTube channel or if you don’t have to have content on your channel, it’s not what you have to have. The biggest thing is just having the videos and then thinking about who you’re talking to.

In the last episode we talked about the five stages of awareness. It’s really important to think about that. One thing I love about YouTube, YouTube is one of the very few networks. The other thing we talked about in the last video aired last session is don’t think about an ad network like a Swiss army knife. Think about it like a fork or a spoon or a knife. It has a unique purpose and it can’t do everything. YouTube is one of the networks that can actually do everything. It can cover people all the way from the top stage, to the totally unaware down to do being really good at remarketing. That’s because you’ve got what I call Google data. Google knows what it is that you do on a daily basis online. It can see what you’re searching for, what blogs you’re reading, if you’re visiting sites like ESPN, if you’re watching stuff on YouTube, It’s g-mail. There are a lot of people who use Gmail, so those are all Google properties and so the extent that Google is a big privacy concern about everything right now, do you think Facebook knows a lot about you, Google knows way more.

They know way more from the day you enter third grade is what we’ve discovered.

Google doesn’t have an age range, Facebook has a demographic, Snapchat has a demographic. Google is everything. Everybody goes to Google to search for stuff or to go to YouTube. You talk to kids between the ages of eight and twelve, they may know about Snapchat than Facebook, but YouTube is everything for them. You cannot advertise to people below the age of eighteen. That’s not one of those things that you can do, but I’m just saying Google is a universally adopted ecosphere and so it’s really good at understanding about you. Where I was getting with that is there are two types of data that it really looks for. Affinity audiences or interest targeting is everything that you do on a daily basis.

I played football in college. I absolutely loved football. I look at football stuff all the time. I searched for football scores, I watched football highlights on YouTube, I read blogs about football. It knows that I’m a football fanatic. From the affinity audience side, I would fall into football fanatic, I would follow it to marketer, I would fall into business person. It’s got these little buckets and it puts me into. If you want to target people who are football fanatics, John’s going to be in that bucket with millions of other people. Do you want to target business people? You can do that. At any time, you break your normal habits. Let’s say I look at football stuff, now all of a sudden I want to get a new car because my car broke down. I started searching for new cars. Google knows that I broke my habit and I’m now in the market to buy something.

What’s incredible about this is one step down. Affinity audience’s totally unaware. It’s like, “You’re interested in this stuff and we’re going disrupt your normal daily routine and tell you there’s an opportunity.” The same thing with problem aware is kind of that stage of, “You’re not really looking for anything yet, but you may be in this area. You have a car and it’s check engine light came on. We have a product that solves that.” I’m either not aware of my problem or I just became aware of it and I’m not actively looking for a solution, YouTube can cover both of those extremely well. Then when it really starts to get exciting is that in market piece where you’re actively searching for something, whether it be how to start a podcast that’s high and then moving down into podcast hosting or podcasts this or that, and then it’s how to monetize a podcast, that’s all lower and lower into the funnel of the search words.

It gets more and more long tail, more and more unique, more and more market-specific. YouTube allows you to target people. If you fall into one of the major categories like you’re in the market for mortgages or cars or life insurance or baby supplies, you can advertise to people who are actively going through that. You start to get into things where if a little bit more of a micro niche, you can start to put together. Google just recently released a tool. It’s called a Custom Intent Audiences. You can actually take keywords that people are actively searching for that deal with your niche markets and turn it into your own little in market audience and advertise to those people. I have a YouTube video, a tutorial. It talks about how we do this. When we built a top of funnel, middle funnel, bottom funnel keywords. This is where people are at and we could advertise. We can build ads based on what they’re searching for. If you’re looking at podcast hosting. I think that was one of the terms you gave me earlier.

YouTube Advertising: You can take keywords that people are actively searching for that deal with your niche markets and turn it into your own little market audience and advertise to those people.


If you’re interested in podcast hosting, make sure you watch this video, dive in, talk about a lot of the challenges, and here’s the solution that we created to help you solve that problem. If it’s further down on monetization, you can go back to the ad that we talked about earlier. It really covers all the way from didn’t know anything, there was no problem, all the way down to actively looking for a solution. Once they’ve got there and they already know about you, then you can retarget them. It truly covers that whole spectrum. Google’s data is incredible and allows you to reach people through it every stage which I think is incredible.

I want to thank you for being so open and free with your information. I think that’s very helpful to us as hosts, to us as business people and to all of our readers as well. Certainly, they now know that AdSkills is a heck of a resource.

We’re lucky this is something that Justin and Chaunna, my business partners, we’ve been really blessed. We found that there’s an opportunity to sell people stuff, but just doing good and helping people get to that point, they feel that confidence and they can start to generate a return for themselves. We judge our success not by well how well we do, it’s by how well our customers do, or our students do. We just love to be out and share it, and make sure people aren’t making the mistakes that are costing other people money. We appreciate the opportunity to be on here.

The Secrets To YouTube Advertising – Final Thoughts

That was such a revelation to me to because we even have some video ads running in the front of YouTube videos right now on YouTube that are related to podcasting and people looking into learning how to start a podcast. Our video strategy, it remains to see to be seen whether it’s going to completely work and it’s too early in our ad campaign process to determine that. You’re going to start taking the courses in AdSkills and we’ll report back. I think we should also report back on what success we’re having with our own ad campaign. We have a dozen video ads that are running in front of different YouTube ads but what they’re doing is people that are going to watch certain videos on YouTube, are going to be served our ad first. The idea of these ads is that you would click on the ad and immediately go to an offer taking you away from this video that you were planning on watching.

It never made sense to me because it’s not human nature to derail you from doing it. That’s why we ignore commercials all the time. That’s why we prefer Netflix instead of TV. We just don’t like it. You and I were watching a TV show on demand on direct TV, that’s what we have here. We’d been watching the show on Netflix, and then we ran through all of the episodes, but the current season we had to catch up I think on ABC Go. We had to watch it and you can’t fast forward through the commercials. We were so annoyed and it wasn’t just so annoyed because there were commercials, it was so annoyed because they were the same commercials over and over again. When you get annoyed with something that’s not working for you, that’s not helping your brand. It’s not even leaving a good brand impression if your goal was to get brand awareness. You’re getting negative brand awareness and it’s bleeding off from their annoyance of how ads are served.

I really think this strategy of not necessarily intending to take people away from the video they were going to watch in the first place, but getting them to instead subscribe to your YouTube channel. Once they subscribe to your YouTube Channel, you’ve got all their data and you know who they are and you can retarget them later. The other thing about this is that we’re going to be bringing new episodes upcoming as I’m getting more and more information about Google podcasts. Now we have a connection between YouTube, Google podcast, your Google search, and your blog posts. Those three things together could be creating really powerful cross subscriber understanding. Which means better advertising, more relevant, a more targeted audience overall.

Judge success not by well how well you do but by how well your customers do. Share on X

Having a YouTube strategy, whether it’s just having and the ad’s going to a subscribe channel and it’s just you’re playing. We have some clients who will do just the words. It’ll just be the words and you just hear the audio track version of the podcast. It’s just a standard image and just the audio track. We have others who actually record video and play that. With Product Launch Hazards, that’s what I do. We put all of our videos up because we’re actually doing a live Zoom. We record that so we have the videos, but we also then put it out in podcast so we have both things going on. Whether you’re doing that but having some kind of YouTube strategy and having a channel there is important. Make sure that you’re putting that practice in place because this is going to be powerful overall and your ranking strategy, which should be the ultimate goal. Getting people to stay tuned into you no matter where they want to listen to you. Then being able to follow them and make them offers that they are ready for and that are relevant to them. I really appreciate John’s expertise and his openness and willingness to share with us.

While we can’t speak from experience from taking the courses on yet, I think it’s a fantastic resource. We’ll give you our experience in the coming months, but I was very impressed and I think it’s worth at least exploring for sure. I do want to say we didn’t have no relationship with the AdSkills at all in terms of an alliance here. We don’t make money when you go to and do that, I just want to be clear on that. It’s just the best resource that we’ve found so far to provide real informed information on this. That’s really what everybody’s looking for is to sift through and separate fact from fantasy here. When you have such depth in knowledge that like John has, I want you guys to hear that. That’s why we’re so passionate and excited about it.

Thank you all for listening to Feed Your Brand. If any of you have had experience and taking some of these courses, reach out to us and let us know anywhere on social media or comment on the blog post or send us an email. There are lots of ways to contact us, you’ll find on the web. Thank you so much everybody. We hope you enjoyed this episode. We will talk to you next time. This has been Tracy and Tom on Feed Your Brand.

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John Belcher

John got his start working at Google on the AdWords team. While there John saw a gap between the average company’s advertising goals and their actual ability to leverage paid traffic to achieve them profitably. John has personally managed over $5MM in ad spend, consulted on another $20MM, helped clients raise Series A funding, 5x MRR in 8 short months, and implement tracking and analytics systems to understand which marketing channels are driving results for their businesses.
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