Ian Nagy is the Co-Founder of VidTao, a Free Software for tracking top-performing YouTube Ads. He’s also Co-Founder of Inceptly, a Youtube Advertising Agency that offers Done-for-You YouTube Services for D2C Brands.
We basically videos for us as an agency or a loss leader. So the main obstacle to scaling any offer on YouTube is the creative. And we make our money when our clients make money, um, by scaling. So we pretty much go into the red in terms of like the actual creative, almost always. So we keep costs down as much as we can for the production, because we know that it's not going to be, um, it's probably not going to be a home run, especially out of the gate. So we don't want, like, I know you can get an amazed, you can get some amazing video ads done for 70 K or even, you know, one of the most famous people will make them. They charge over six figures. [inaudible]
Listening to the rich and poor ed podcast where we break down the financial principles that rich advertisers are deploying today to turn advertising into profit and get tons of traffic to their websites without killing their cash. These advertisers agencies, affiliates brands are responsible for managing over a billion dollars a year in ad spend. You'll hear about what's working for them today. They're rich ads and we'll roast their epic failures and crappy ads on the internet with poor ads. Let's get into it.
Alrighty. Y'all we're back in action. With another episode of the rich dad, poor dad podcast, we got your hosts, Zach Johnson and Dylan Carpenter. What's good, Zach.
Oh dude, we're talking about some YouTube ads today. That's going to be a knife. Nice breath of fresh
Air. Oh, it is man. And especially someone who's, you know, spending Shu 40, 50 million a year, but more importantly, we got the co-founder of vids house, a free YouTube ads tool to kind of spine or competitors and the co-founder of, and separately, a YouTube ads agency. That's kind of the full service side of things, but Ian what's good, man.
Uh, you guys are so pro in your intro is I'm impressed. Cool, man. Thanks for jumping on
This about, uh, tell me about vid [inaudible] like I, uh, I'm not a YouTube as guys, so I, I would love to know like, what's the, what's the quick pitch here on video.
Yeah, so, um, me and my business partner, Brett, we were, um, or we're we're YouTube ad nerds. So we're, we were always paying attention to what ads we're seeing in our timeline on YouTube. And, uh, we started just logging them manually in a big Google spreadsheet. So there's a way you can right. Click on the ad as it shows up, as you're watching YouTube. And then you can grab this little bit of code and stats for nerds and then dump it into a YouTube link and then you'll get the unlisted video ad. So we started doing that, um, in a, in a Google spreadsheet just to keep track of ads we were seeing and try to reverse engineer them for our clients. And then we just decided, Hey, let's like, let's build the software for this, um, to make that process more simple. And then we also just decided, Hey, let's make a database of all these ads.
And so we did that about a year ago. Um, and, uh, yeah, now we, now we're tracking tens of thousands of ads and, uh, their performance is math daily. So you can see what people are spending because, uh, yeah, it's crazy. So cause if you think about it, an unlisted video, the only reason you're going to watch it is if you see it as an ad is there's no other really way to access it. So, um, yeah, we just track do you track views on these ads every day and then that is a, you know, an analog for, for spend. Um, and so you can see, you know, uh, what people are running right now and, uh, use it to just get inspired for your own YouTube ads and see what's working and go from there.
This is great. We're just going to rebrand this. The YouTube rich had library, uh,
Oh, it's free. So sorry. We'll be very profitable for you.
Oh man. Yeah. Well this is a non-profit podcast, so it's all good. Nice, nice. Nice. Just for the love. That's right. Oh, that's awesome. Awesome. I had no idea. You could do this on YouTube. What do I know, Dylan? What do I know?
Hey, it's new to both of us, man. Especially when you mentioned spend on Mike. Oh, you can see that, those kind of metrics. That's gold. Yeah.
Oh, that's cool, man. So, all right. Give us a rundown on, uh, the agency. You guys are managing 4 million a month. Let's talk about, uh, let's talk about one of your favorite, you know, campaigns or clients that you're, that you're most proud of.
I mean, where, where we really feel like super heroes is when someone is dependent on one traffic source and they're just not able, they're just standing on one leg and then they know they're one Facebook ban away from not being able to acquire customers. And I love being able to come in and, and hook them up with an entirely new source. And so we had that, um, I think it was this summer, actually, we started working with this, this, uh, I can't name the name, but it's basically like a, it's like a, it's actually a SAS. Um, but it's a D C SAS. It's not like a VC-backed SAS. So we got to basically, you know, every dollar we spend, we gotta make X back, which is, you know, just challenging and exciting as we're all used to, you know, we're all direct response people, but, um, so yeah, they had very little history on YouTube.
They had tried a few things, but nothing was really working. They had, I think they're spending, uh, you know, five figures a day, maybe like up to 20 K a day on, on Facebook. And so, yeah, this is, uh, we pretty much hit it out of the ballpark the first month. And we were spending, uh, 50 K a day at the end of the month from basically like a pretty cold account. And we're, we're still spending around that then it months later. So we've been able to maintain that spend over time has been awesome. So, um, that's definitely one of my favorite, um, you know, my favorite home run case studies to share, of course in the meantime, and those same months, there are plenty of offers that totally bombed on YouTube for us. So, you know, it's not like we always said out the ballpark, um, there's a variety of always a variety of factors that play, but, um, yeah, that's one of my
Heck. Yeah, man. So let's go ahead and dive into this rich ad segment here. We'd love to kind of find out what's working good for you right now in these wild times. So, I mean, what's your rich ad in this scenario?
Rich ad? Um, yeah, I would say, um, uh, I'll just drop it on you guys. All right. So
Put some serious thought into this. I love it
Simple, but it's, it's profound. So, um, yeah, if you can, if you have, uh, if you have, uh, something that's sold with the, like a video sales letter, um, you can, you can definitely with a few tweaks, make it work extremely well on YouTube as a, as an ad. So, um, yeah, there's definitely ways to do that and that's, that's been really powerful. Um, and if you look at vid tile, you go in there and look and see what some of the top ads are. You'll see that, um, it doesn't have to, it can be a super long ad, can be, you know, 45 minutes plus, or it, can you think about what's in a VSL, it's basically you're you are, um, a video sales letter. Um, you're basically addressing, uh, it's a complete sales argument, so you're addressing you're, you're agitating. Um, you're providing a solution you're overcoming objections, um, and depending on how common the product is or how cool the product is that can all happen within, you know, five minutes or maybe if it's, there's a lot more product differentiation that needs to take place, then, uh, it might take a bit longer than that, depending on the, you know, stages of awareness, like the Eugene Schwartz models that, um, I can't recall off the top of my head right now, but I think that's okay.
We all know with that. We all know about that. Yeah.
Now you said 45 minutes. Is that your typical link for these kind of VSLs or, oh, they can be,
That can work. That's what people find shocking is that you can run really long ads on YouTube. As you know, I'm talking about in-stream ads where you're gonna go watch, um, you know, cat cat, video compilation, number three, and this 45 minute video pops up in front of it and you end up watching it. So that, that happens. Um, and part of the reason I'll just digress for a little bit, but so it's all about the context of the app platform. So Facebook is, it's an interrupted app platform, got to think about it, how we use it, we're usually using it to kill time. You know, we're kind of just scrolling absentmindedly, um, through it, maybe just seeing what our friends or family are up to, or, uh, cooking on the occasional sort of very, uh, pattern interrupting kind of image from an ad or video from an ad.
Um, whereas YouTube, you go there with intent, you know, you go there to learn or be entertained pretty much, and you watch, you know, you're watching certain videos, you get into that YouTube rabbit hole kind of mindset, where it's almost like a sort of hypnotic state where you're completely focused and absorbed. So the ads kind of have to fit into that, that frame that, that, you know, that framework or that context. Um, so in that context, you can end up watching a 45 minute VSO. I doubt it would ever happen on Facebook. Um, you got to think about our minds kind of, we're kind of skimming along the surface there, whereas YouTube we're really, our mindset is quite immersed quite deep. So yeah.
Now out of the gate, when it, with those LinkedIn videos, is that something you're testing multiple angles of, or are you going straight for the killed, you know, with them, you know, they're already kind of in the zone, it kind of learned some new things. So I kind of get that concept there, but do you all usually test one or two of these at different links? I'm just thinking of, you mentioned those in-stream videos. I mean, oh man, if I'm watching you a podcast and all of a sudden they get a 40 minute ad, I'm furious.
Totally. I mean, I, I, it's not a, it's not a, a, it's not like a golden bullet, you know, it doesn't, it doesn't always solve a problem, but it's just something that I think that if your listeners are, have that kind of asset or have the capability to create that kind of asset in terms of like a long sales argument, um, it can be really powerful, but a lot of our best ads too are quite short. It can be under a minute. So, um, it just really depends. And again, you know, it's the cliche, but you have to test it and see how it does
The most, you put behind one of these VSLs and then, you know, possible revenue wise. Oh, you mean adspend yeah.
Oh yeah. I mean seven figures, for sure. So, so yeah, seven. Oh, I mean actually, no like eight figures. Yeah, for sure. So, uh, not my money client's money and, uh, you know, and actually, uh, yeah, actually one of these, I was talking to the co this particular client, uh, just to go weeks ago and, uh, he moved into a very exclusive area probably. Yeah. One of the most exclusive areas in the country and bought and bought an insane house, um, just as a result of this exact situation. So a really good VSL and some good, you know, some very good media buying behind it. Yeah. So that's my, uh, you know, that's my, my, my brag story right there. Hell yeah. How long did,
Can you usually run these for, do you notice creative fatigue? I'm totally, yeah. Yeah.
It just depends. You have to pay attention to, um, uh, you know, uh, click through rate is, is huge. Um, and, uh, obviously that, that changes every other downstream metrics. So it's actually also changes upstream metric, like CPM. If you have a really good click through rate on a video, then, um, Google, Google has a black box ad quality score metric, which we don't really know all the components of it, but click through rate is a big one. Um, so if you have a video with a really good click through rate and it's, and it's, it's congruent with what's on the actual next page, you know, um, then that's a as reflected probably by something like bounce rate or something like that, then, um, uh, that's gonna allow you to, they're gonna charge you less per CPM, you know, so you're gonna pay less per impression and, uh, from there, and then this is another point actually not to get too out in the weeds, but so yeah, these VSLs were great, but actually they're, th they're not optimal to be honest, if you think about it, um, just imagine how much money in 45 minutes, if you're on, which is close to the average session time on YouTube, it's about 40, 45 minutes.
Um, they could be showing you, I don't know, 20, 30, 40 ads probably, you know, so you're going to be paying higher, a higher CPM for, for, uh, a longer ad like that. So we like to try to, you know, if we can, um, get a shorter, compact video if possible, but sometimes, you know, it just doesn't work as well. It just depends on, oh yeah.
I mean, test it, you know, cause yeah, if you can pull an eight figures off one of these, I mean, Hey, that's a, that's a gold mine there, for sure. For sure. Well, heck yeah, man, that's quite a good one there now of course we'd love to kind of dive into the not so great things, you know, the more embarrassing tests as we all know, not all test when you're adding the scenario.
Right? Yeah. So, um, I would say something that's interesting is that, you know, you would think that the more higher production value videos would do better, you would think that, okay, all things being equal. If I, if I had a nicer looking video that, um, you know, it's looks more professional or whatever, um, that's going to be a major factor in performance. So we actually, this past year, we've really invested a lot in building our live action video captain capacity. So we basically, we can produce full live action, comedic video ads. So like super high, like cinematic quality, um, video ads. And I mean, some of them work. Um, and I, I know this from, you know, uh, our team being behind some other, um, behind the scenes on some other, uh, some other videos. I won't name them them, but, um, similar to the high quality and well done, funny everything else, all the direct response elements at play. Um, sometimes they just don't work. So that's been interesting to see, um, and seeing how oftentimes simple videos with it's all starts from like the ad copy, you know, just connecting with people on that, on that level. Um, that can be really, really powerful. So that's been interesting to see how sometimes he's really entertaining ads that also they're not just entertaining. They're like, well done from a direct response perspective, sometimes don't work. So that's been interesting to see.
Oh, heck yeah. Yeah. I mean, for a lot of the guests we've had on is, you know, they'll take that professional video that costs, you know, 15 K to make, they'll put 10 K ad spend behind it and turns out that the video they did for free performance 20 times better. So, I mean, based off this specific case, what's been the biggest loss they're considering, you know, how much money they put behind it and ad spend how much the video costs would you say it's, you know, upwards of 20, 30 K there, or is it a, usually a smaller kind of, you know, budget there?
When we do videos, we basically videos for us as an agency or a loss leader. So the main, the main, um, and that in the sense of the main obstacle to scaling any offer on YouTube is the creative. And we make our money when our clients make money, um, by scaling. So we pretty much go into the red in terms of like the actual creative, almost always. So we are, so with that said, we're pretty, um, we keep costs down as much as we can for the production because we know that it's not going to be, um, it's probably not going to be a home run, especially out of the gate. So we don't want, like, I know you can get an amazing, you can get some amazing video ads done for 70 K or even, you know, one of the most famous people who make them, they charge over six figures.
Um, and then a percentage on the backend and I'm not gonna, I mean, they're do amazing work, um, both of those companies, um, but that's a big chunk of change to lay out if you have no idea if it's gonna work. So we try to, you know, we try to hedge a little bit more on the, on the side of, uh, uh, testing more ideas versus trying to go all in on one massive, massive production while still keeping the quality, the quality is as high as it can go. You know? So, but in terms of your question, like how much was lost, not that much, honestly. Um, yeah, it wasn't, it wasn't a huge, it wasn't a huge deal, especially because you got to think about, um, at scale what it comes down to. At least what we see is we want to be, um, 75% of our efforts in the creative side are dedicated towards iterating on control on a cause it's hard to find a control, right?
Like it's, it's hard to find, uh, a winning, a winning ad that is wildly profitable. So it's kind of like you find that horse and you're riding it. And then obviously, like you mentioned, um, ad fatigue is gonna set in at some point. So we always want to be testing new iterations of that. And that could be like reshooting the whole thing, the whole thing, same script, new actor. Um, I don't know if you guys, this is a great example, actually. Have you guys seen the Buddha, the Buddha power bracelet ads on YouTube? I don't think I have. Okay. Well, I'm about to put a post up on our blog. Vitel about this. And it's like, I mean, just to be honest, it's, it's borderline unethical with what they're talking about in these ads. It leads off with, you know, uh, yeah, I was, I was living, I was living on the streets and I was, uh, I was a junkie and, um, and I met this old, this old man gave me this bracelet and my life changed for that.
I lost my bracelet and my life was worse than ever, but then I found this other, I found the bracelet again and, and you know, my life is now amazing. I'm rich. I have a, you know, an amazing family, blah, blah, blah. And you can get it too for just $20. And it's literally this, or I think it's 29 99 and it's this thing you can get. You can just look it up on alley express and it's cost $4. So it's like, it's, it's, uh, it's pretty much a commodity and they've created this whole story around it. Um, and there's, uh, on Midtown towel, we have, I think we're tracking like 12 of their ads they launched in early 2020. And, um, I think at this point, it probably based on our estimates there they've, at some months they've spent over seven figures on this, on this offer and, um, all the ads, they're just iterations of the same story, like slightly different hook, new actor, same trajectory of the story.
Um, same format. It's like a person in front of a green screen with some B roll of, uh, you know, the drama of their life. Just like be real. You get off of, um, you know, stock dot Adobe or something like that. And then some product shots super like low budget. You probably, you wouldn't cost much to produce it, but they S they works. Um, so my point is like, iterating is a big one. The second biggest thing is, uh, so 25%, we'd like to just aim for moonshots, like entirely different screams, not whispers is the, um, is the expression that someone, I didn't make that up. Someone said that test screams, not whispers some, I think some, a Gora guy anyways. Um, so yeah, the, these live action comedic ones fall into the realm of, um, into the realm of, uh, these moonshots. And so, so as I work, um, I, yeah, we've never had one that was a game changer that took an offer that wasn't converting and made it convert amazingly. Um, but you know, we haven't been doing it that long either. It's been, you know, less than a year, we've been doing these comedic, uh, you know, live action ones. So I am confident that eventually, maybe eventually we'll hit one. That's gonna go massive. But, um, in the meantime, you know, some of them, most of them convert decent, but none of them have been like head and shoulders above, uh, the other existing controls just to be totally transparent.
Interesting. So the big moral of the story is here, buy some cheap bracelets online and come up with an unreal story on higher lives, terrible without it, and try and scale it to the moon, you know? Yeah,
Absolutely. It's true though. It's all about the story like that's, that was, was interesting is that they basically took this commodity it's, it's basically a commodity, it's like a cool looking commodity and they made a story around it, and now they're able to charge what, what is that? My mental it's eight 30 at night year. My mental math is terrible, but that's like $4 into basically $30. So, um, you know, that's where they marked it up. And, you know, if you look up that you just look up funk, sway bracelet on, on Google, you're going to see like hundreds of these things, all probably from the same factory in China sold by different vendors, but they're able to sell it, you know, it's crazy just because it has that story attached to it.
Unreal. Well, man, it's super interesting there. So as you're aware of, you know, with the podcast and the witty name, we love to find the crossroads of marketing and the financial side of things. So based off your expertise, your experience there, what kind of financial tips could you provide for some of the listeners here?
Um, yeah, I mean, I would say as a business owner or co-owner, um, invest in your people honestly, well first find, find, find good people, which is easier said than done, but you know, them when you find them honestly, and, uh, just give them the space to give them the space and also the structure to, uh, to thrive in their zone of genius and think, I mean, I, there's no way we would, uh, you know, w we would be like, I'm not, there's no way we'd be where we're where we are right now. That sounds like really presumptuous or, um, like over the top, but I feel very happy with how we've been able to grow. And, um, it's because, you know, we have an amazing team and, um, it's all comes down to people. I always thought, like back in the day, um, when I was getting into internet back in the day, um, that it was going to be like, I needed to do everything like every piece of the puzzle, but it really comes down to partnering up and teaming up with the right people. And that's where the magic happens. I think it's like two plus two equals eight, versus it's not, or like one plus one equals eight, not like one plus one equals two. Um, so not like a, not like a specific financial, uh, bit of advice, but don't hesitate to properly incentivize your team. What are
Some ways you've incentivized your team to kind of, you know, really invested in them and make them love what they do.
Um, always identify their zone of genius and be willing to invest in support for all the stuff that is holding them back from that zone of genius. So it could be like hiring assistance for your people so that they don't have to do some tedious stuff that they don't need to be doing. Um, you know, even if it's a little bit more expensive for you as a business owner, um, always like never hesitate to someone is if someone on my team is interested in, in learning something that's connected to our business, I just don't even hesitate to get them access to whatever program they want, you know, like, um, and yeah, I mean, and don't, uh, just, don't be stingy either just pay, pay, pay, pay what you can, and obviously within the realm of what, what works financially, but just think long-term in terms of building a building a family, and I've seen it firsthand, how some of our best people, um, you know, there's only so many hours in the day and other people will want to work with them. Um, and when they're happy with the environment that they have working for you, they're, I mean, they're just gonna like laugh at other people, trying to get a piece of them when they know that the situation is not as aligned with their kind of the meaning that they have, um, you know, with the situation that you've created. So I don't know, maybe I'm like talking to them too much, but that's just my sense of how things have gone. And we've been really fortunate also to just find really quality people.
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Good. Well, that makes complete sense. When was the kind of point in your internet marketing journey that you were like, Hey, this is one-stop shop or one man show or two man show. It's just not going to cut it. How long did that kind of take you to kind of grasp there? Um,
Well, so my first, uh, so I was, uh, I was ambulance driver and then I lost my job and I ended up working for this. It was an instructional porn company. They sold direct response and instructional support. It was called two girls teach sex, and that's a whole, whole long story. And I know we're running out of time here, but, um, I won't get into it too much, but it, that was golden hippo media. That's how they got started. They're like, I don't know if the listeners know, but there, uh, I don't know how big they are now. They're, you know, hundreds of millions of dollars of revenue a year, and they have all kinds of different offers in health, beauty. Um, and they have an amazing system there, but I remember walking in there and, um, Craig Clemens and his brothers, and then, uh, Josh, uh, Craig, Craig, Josh, um, mark and Kurt, those guys, those four guys, they found that it, um, they had their four founders and I always thought like, why would you need four founders?
You know, um, that's a lot. And then under those four founders, there, there were like, there's, uh, a copy team. There's even an email team. There's like a, uh, B like a, B squad, VSL writing team. You know, there's all these different components. And honestly, I took me, you know, that was eight years ago, I think, eight or nine years ago. And it took me just until this last year, really to realize that it's so obvious, but not one person can do everything even like the most brilliant copywriter like Craig Clemens is he's probably the, the best copywriter, direct response copywriter in terms of how much money he's earned, who's ever who's ever lived. And, uh, you know, that's his one area of genius and you gotta have like a media buyer in the mix. You've got to have an amazing teams guy. You gotta have like an amazing finance guy. And then all kind of just plugged in together, like one big brain. So it's, it sounds really obvious, but it took me like actually living, growing, uh, growing a team to realize that I can't do it all myself and I was trying to do it all myself, even, you know, a couple years, two, three years back, um, before I met my business partner. And it's just makes so more sense when you start to think about relationships and building a team and building this like a, yeah, just like a family really. Hmm,
Man, I love this. Well, heck yeah, man. So give everybody an idea. What's next for you? You know, how can we support you and how can people kind of, you know, reach out to you?
Yeah. So first of all, if you're at all interested in YouTube ads, I'm just going to go to [inaudible] dot com. It's our free YouTube ad spy tool and check it out, sign up it's free. And, uh, I'll ask you some questions and the onboarding, and then, um, that's those get free access to the software. And again, it's totally free. It's we have tens of thousands of ads and you can see what other people are running. You can search the search functionality was really bad until like two weeks ago, it was like very, very bad. If you capitalize the letter in the wrong space, you would you'd have, you wouldn't get near results, which we, uh, we, we invested in, in updating that. So that's actually quite good. Um, so they should be able to find some of your competitor ads there, check that out. We have some content on the blog on how to, uh, how to run YouTube ads. We really try to be just transparent and share everything. That's everything that we can in terms of what's working. What's not working on the media buying side and the creative side so that people can add in this other traffic platform to, to the mix. So, um, that's our, or are you too bad spy tool? And then in separately and subsidy.com, um, is our agency. And, uh, yeah, we, we are a full service YouTube ad agency. We produce and scale YouTube ads for two, for a direct to consumer direct response brands. Heck
Yeah, man. Well, cool. Once again, man. Thanks for jumping on. It was an absolute blast there.
Thank you gentlemen. It's great, Tim. Great to meet you. III meet you and uh, yeah, thanks so much for the opportunity.
Thanks so much for listening to another episode of the rich ed or ed podcasts. If you're like me and listen to podcasts on the go, go ahead and subscribe on apple podcasts, Spotify, YouTube, and rich dad, poor dad.com/podcast. And if you absolutely love the show, go ahead and leave a review and a comment share with a friend. If you do take a copy screenshot of it, email me firstname.lastname@example.org. Show me you left a review and I'll give you a free copy of the rich add or add book to learn more about the book. Go to rich ed poor, a.com to leave a review that a rich ed or ed.com/review. Thanks again.
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Jason Hornung is the founder and Creative Director at JH Media LLC, the world’s #1 direct response advertising agency focusing exclusively on the Facebook ads platform. Jason’s proprietary methods for ad creation, audience selection and scaling are responsible for producing $20 million + of profitable sales for his clients EVERY YEAR