This is part of our Ultimate Guide to Building a Music Business collection where we’ll be breaking down platforms section by section. We’re covering everything from streaming platforms to eCommerce solutions, monetization systems, and marketing platforms. We’re kicking things off with Google Ads for Youtube and expanding into the Youtube platform and all other areas like Spotify, Publishing, etc.

Google Ads provides you with a great option for gaining exposure for your content on Youtube. One of the reasons Google Ads is such a great option is the fact that you’re paying for views, which ensures that your brand is reaching attentive eyeballs and building awareness. On a platform like Facebook, you’re charged every time your ad appears, even when it appears multiple times to the same person, and appearances in the feed are counted as views. When a Facebook user scrolls through their feed, every time they pass a video, that video generates a view no matter if the user stopped to watch the video or not. With Google Ads for Youtube, you only pay when users actually stop and watch your video. Let’s take a deep dive into Youtube ads to find the best strategies that will contribute to improved performance on the platform. 

Audio Ads 

  • Runs on Youtube Music 

  • Limited to 15 seconds 

  • CPM (Charged per thousand times the ad appears) -  based advertising 

The thing about the Google Ads Audio ad option is they run on the Youtube Music platform. There’s a big difference between the users on Youtube.com and the users on Youtube Music which we break down in our analysis of the Youtube platform. Advertising on Youtube using audio ads is like advertising on the radio. Users can’t skip the ads which means everyone is forced to listen to them no matter if they like what they hear or not. 

What’s great is reaching Youtube Music users who have the ability to stream tracks on-demand. In-stream ads and Discovery ads primarily appear on Youtube because there are vastly more Youtube users than Youtube Music users. As an advertiser, your budget gets exhausted on Youtube before it even has the possibility of appearing on Youtube Music. With Audio ads, the focus is on Youtube Music where you’re more likely to find music fans. The issue here is that Youtube Music is for a lean-back listening experience whereas Youtube is a lean-forward experience. Youtube users are more likely to be looking at their screens than Youtube Music users which means they’re in a better position to act. Audio ads could be more impactful in building an audience of listeners but also more expensive due to Youtube Music’s lean-back environment. 


  • Your music gets exposed to Youtube Music users 

  • Higher royalty payouts for streams on Youtube Music 

  • Viewers are less likely to encounter ads when streaming your music 

  • Automatically pulls up a playlist that heavily features other tracks from your catalog thereby driving more organic streams. 


  • Only 15 seconds to convince people to click 

  • Youtube music is for laidback listening so users may not be actively engaged with the screen which makes them less likely to respond 

  • Streams don’t count toward the algorithm 

  • Requires creating a custom 15-second video to serve as the ad 

The goal of an Audio ad - Expose your music and get it heard by music fans.

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