How To Set Up Targeted Youtube Ads

Youtube is a huge platform with over 2 billion monthly users worldwide. Youtube can be a great platform to communicate with your audience if you target them correctly. You need to first understand who your audience is and what type of content attracts them. To understand who your audience is you can dig into your data.


Once you have discovered your audience, you then need to target them correctly, think about what type of video they watch, who their influencers are and where could you place your ads in order for them to be seen by your audience.

Youtube Advertising Walkthrough

There are a number of ways you can target your audience on youtube, you can target users based on demographics, interests, hobbies, education level and more, you can choose popular channels to have your video shown or you could nail it down to the exact video if you wanted to be that precise.


Say for example you sell healthy eating products, you wouldn’t want your Youtube ad appearing when people are watching “How To Make A BigMac” video. If you are selling fitness products you would want your ad tied to fitness videos rather than makeup tutorials.


Youtube ads are set up using Google Adwords. In this article, I will set up a targeted Youtube campaign for Multicore National and walk you through some steps to help you set up your very first targeted Youtube ad campaign.


Step 1 – Choosing Your Goal And Campaign Type

What are you trying to achieve from your ad, is it brand awareness, sales, website traffic or even online sales? First, define your goal and select your advertising method.


Head over to your Google Adwords dashboard and select the blue circle containing a white plus symbol and select “new campaign”, then choose your goal.

Youtube Advertising Walkthrough

Google will now ask you to choose your campaign type, for this option we are going to select video, this will allow us to set up a video ad on youtube and across Google display network if we want. You can then add your website and click on continue. If your campaign goal is brand awareness then you will have the option to choose a campaign sub-goal. These will be skippable in-stream, bumper, non-skippable in-stream, out-stream and ad sequence. Choose your subtype and click continue, for this tutorial I will keep it nice and simple and choose skippable in-stream.


Step 2 – Configure Your Ad Settings

Next, you can start to configure your Ad settings, this step is going to be broken down even further to help you understand each section.


Step 2.1 – Name your campaign, give your campaign a name so that when you see it in the list with all your other ad campaigns it is easy to identify.


Step 2.2 – Choose your bidding strategy, here you have lots of options and the strategy you choose will depend highly upon the campaign goal you choose. To get an understanding of what each of the bidding strategies mean you can click on the ? symbol and Google will break each one down for you, choose the one that best suits your needs.


Step 2.3 – Enter your budget and campaign start and end dates, if you want your campaign to be continuous with no end date then you just simply change it from “campaign total” to “daily budget” and select the daily budget that you are willing to spend.

Youtube Advertising Guide


Step 3 – Choose Networks, Locations And Languages

The next step is to choose where you want your ad to be shown, what language and which areas you would like to target, again I will break it down below.


Step 3.1 – Choose your network, your network is basically if you want your ad to be shown next to search results, in-stream or on Google display network. Choose how you want your video ads to be shown on Youtube. 


Step 3.2 – Languages, what languages do your audience speak? This will restrict who your video will be shown too based on their language settings. If your audience is of mixed languages then leave this section blank so your video reaches your specific audience regardless of their language.


Step 3.3 – Location, where do you serve? Are you a localised business? Are you going for worldwide youtube targeting? You can choose your location or locations that you want to target now. As Multicore National only operates in the UK in Stoke and Manchester my youtube Ad is going to be shown to people in these areas within a 20-mile radius. Either choose all countries and territories or choose to enter another location, you can either enter the locations in here or if you want to set a radius you can choose “advanced search” and select radius at the top, enter your locations and choose the radius around your location that you want to show your ad.

Youtube Ads Guide

Step 4 – Content Exclusions Define Where Your Ads Can Show

Now you need to choose where your Ads can show, excluded content, inventory type and excluded types and labels. If you are marketing a product for children or a product that can be sensitive to people then this section can be very beneficial to you.


Step 4.1 – Choose an inventory to show your ads on, basically what type of content do you want your Ad to be shown on. You can narrow it down further, but here you have 3 options. “Expanded Inventory” “Standard Inventory” “Limited Inventory”.

The expanded inventory shows your Ad on some sensitive content but avoids extremely sensitive content.

Standard inventory will show your Ad on content that is appropriate for most brands, it excludes the same inventory as expanded but also excludes any violence whether this be fake or real and also any sexual content, even if it’s just the mention of something sexual.

Limited inventory is very limited to what type of content your ad is shown on, it excludes everything the same as standard and expanded but also excludes anything with moderate profanity and moderate sexually suggestive content.


Step 4.2 – Choose excluded content, now you can choose more sensitive categories that you want to exclude your video from being shown on. You have the choices to not show your video on tragedy and conflict videos, sensitive social issues, sexually suggestive content, sensational and shocking videos and videos with profanity and rough language. Click on the categories that you want to exclude your video from and then move onto the next step.


Step 4.3 – Excluded types and labels. Here you can select the content type to exclude your video ads on, you have the options to not show your content on embedded videos and in-stream videos if you want to exclude these types. You can also select digital content labels to exclude, these are basically like movie age ratings and you can select between general audiences, suitable for families content, videos that need parental guidance, teens and older audiences, mature audiences or you can keep it as standard and show on all types of content regardless of the label.


Step 5 – Create Ad Group And Targeting Settings

This part is very important if you would like your video to show to the correct audiences, the more information you have on your audience, the easier it is to target them specifically.


Step 5.1 – Name your Adgroup, give it a memorable name so it is clear what this Ad group is and it is easy to find amongst all your other Ad groups.


Step 5.2 – Demographics, choose your demographics, these include sex, age, parental status and household income.


Step 5.3 – Audiences, create your audience, this section you have the choice to select your audience. Use all the data you have collected to make the correct choice, you can click on the browse tab at the top and start browsing through the list. The list has a drop-down menu featuring 100s of choices. You can search through the “who they are” section, “what their interests and habits are” section, “what they are actively researching and planning” section and “how they have interacted with your business” section, each of these have loads of options for you to choose from. Narrow your audience down the best you can in order to have the highest impact with your Youtube ad.


Step 5.4 – Keyword and topics, here you can choose keywords and topics. You can include all your keywords if you want to narrow it down and show your ad to people who search your keywords often. You can choose topics, so for my campaign, I could choose my topic to be plumbing, so my ad will be shown on videos that fall under the plumbing topic.


Step 5.5 – Placements, you can select the exact Youtube videos you would like your ad to be shown in between, or you can choose the channels your video appears. Knowing your audience’s influencers and what they watch will be very beneficial here because you can have your ad placed in videos that you know your target audience will be watching. You can also select websites, apps and app categories to further narrow down your targeting.


Step 6 – Bidding And Your Advert

You have another option to select how much you want to bid on this Adgroup. Google will use your campaign-level settings so you can just input the same as your campaign settings in here. This is beneficial when you have different video ads you would like to be pushed out. For example, you may want to have 1 campaign with a daily budget of £50, in this campaign you may want to have 2 different video ads one on £10 per day and one on £40 per day. So you can create 2 ad groups and choose the bidding for each one, but it will still take into consideration your campaign level budget and never spend more than this.


Your advert should already be published on Youtube, make your video ad appealing and relevant to your audience. Then input the link to the video in the box under “create your video ad”. This will pull up your Youtube video ready to start sending it out. Next, you want to select the blue button at the bottom labelled “create campaign”. The next page will be a small overview and again click on the blue box labelled “continue to campaign” and that’s your Ad all set up.

Youtube Ads For Beginners



Youtube ads can be very effective if you get your targeting narrowed down. From my knowledge, Youtube is effective for some businesses but less effective for others. For example, Break Free escape rooms Youtube ads have been very successful resulting in a conversion rate of 9.21% when compared to the same video on a Facebook promotion with a conversion rate of 4.3%. When doing Youtube ads for a plumbing company they don’t work great in terms of targeted ads, but they can be very beneficial when using Youtube as a platform to remarket to users who have already visited our website. Remarketing can be very effective with Youtube and I have found it as a great way to re-engage my audience with a cool video and bring them back to my website to make a booking.