Brand Safe YouTube Campaigns: See & Control Where Your Ads Appear12 min read

A Step-By-Step Guide To Brand Safe YouTube Campaigns

Imagine this: you’re responsible for overseeing the video marketing campaigns at a BIG brand that sells products to support family health & wellness. Naturally, your company maintains a strong position on aligning with brand-safe content across your marketing efforts. There’s no room for flubs on questionable content.

You prepare RFP’s and hold meetings to direct your teams and vendors to adhere to your strict advertising and marketing guidelines.

Everything seems to be going as planned… until your coworker captures a screenshot of your marketing campaign, running against unmistakably unsavory content. And the fire begins to flame before you know it, your valued customers begin to take note.

Does this sound like the start of your next night terror? Lucky for you, there’s a way for you to check if you are currently, or have historically been running against potentially nightmare-inducing content on YouTube.

Read on to learn about the two actions you can take to protect your brand’s image to keep the perception of its values intact:

Action 1: See Where Your Ads Are Running on YouTube

Follow these easy steps to see if your videos are running on content that  aligns with your brand values:

1. Navigate to your AdWords account.
2. Click on “Campaigns”

3. Select the campaign you are looking to investigate

Brand Safe: See Where Your Ads Are Running - AdWords Campaigns

4. Inside the campaign, select the tab “Video Targeting”

Brand Safe: See Where Your Ads Are Running - AdWords Video Targeting

5. Then, click on “Placements”

Brand Safety: See Where Your Ads Are Running - Placements: Video Targeting

6. Inside the Video Targeting tab, scroll down past the graph to select “Where ads are shown”

Brand Safety: See Where Your Ads Are Running - Where Ads were shown: Placements: Video Targeting

7. Select Where Ads were shown

Brand Safety: See Where Your Ads Are Running - AdWords Where Ads Were Shown Exclusion

This list could shock you. You didn’t set out to run ads on rap videos etc, but remember, with audience targeting you are actually targeting the user and not what the user is watching. These videos could be relevant to your brand and message with the right viewer.

Now that you know where your ads are running, how can you control and change where your ads are shown?

Action 2: Control Where Your Ads Run on YouTube

The key to successful marketing on YouTube is to get your ad in front of the right viewer at the right time, right?

Audience targeting is one way to achieve broad volume, however, the user needs to be logged in for it to work at all, and it often falls short because it doesn’t help you control ad placement and brand safety.

The fix? Placement targeting!

Placement targeting is one of the best ways to reach your customer at the time of intent. With Placement Targeting, you as the marketer hand-select the videos and channels to run your ads on.

If a viewer watches one of your selected videos, your ad will be shown…highly relevant and at the moment of intent.

But with 400 hours of video uploaded to YouTube every minute, how can you possibly sort through all relevant content manually to find enough videos for your campaign?


Read more about Brand Safety With Placement Targeting on our blog:

How to Achieve Brand Safety on YouTube Through Placement Targeting

We’ve attempted this several times and it’s just not manually scalable – there’s no way to find enough videos to scale your campaign reasonably, let alone keep up with the freshest relevant content that’s continuously being uploaded. Sure, you would get relevant impressions and views, but they would be few and far between.

So your options are to use audience targeting for the volume, but not run ads closely aligned with your brand or product – or – use manual placement targeting for extremely relevant videos to run on, but with limited, if any, volume.

Imagine being capable of scaling those relevant placement targets, without having to put in hours of manual effort.

The truth is, you can use video marketing automation software to plan, orchestrate, optimize, and scale your campaigns while using placement targeting, and, while doing so, preserve the integrity of your brand’s values.

Brite Content’s platform does just that – it takes your marketing efforts and amplifies them. Puts your best content in front of the right customers.


  • Your brand is what your customer thinks and feels about you, so keeping brand integrity intact is key for smart marketers. Take the initiative to find where your ads are running and if they are in line with the values your company represents.
  • Play around with what placements you’re currently running on, and which ones perform the best. You might be surprised and learn more about your customers.

Brand Safety on YouTube for Enterprise Companies

Brand safety is possible on YouTube today, it’s really a matter of using the most precise targeting technique – Content Targeting.

The Brite Content platform delivers content targeting at scale to ensure brand safety for global enterprise brands. This, in addition to simple campaign creation, orchestration and a reporting dashboard that surfaces actionable metrics in real-time.

Want to see how this works?

Easily experiment on the largest video platform in the world – YouTube. Test messaging, offers, content targeting, and sequencing to ensure the best combination always wins.

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