It is easy, and do not brine it in syrup, that will be a poor decision.
Use a skinned belly, it is just easier. You can brine it, or rub it and let it sit overnight, or marinate it, or just rub it before putting on cooker. All will work fine.
Smoke it at 225F for 3 hours, that will render the fat enough, then you can sear it if you want. It is not needed. If you put a layer of rub with sugar in it, the sugar will caramelize up just fine at 225F.
I prefer to do a new meat without a lot of messing about, get a feel for how the meat responds to smoke and heat first, then do more. That being said, some bourbon in the brine won't hurt.
Here is a non-cured, non-brined pork belly, smoked and seared.