Can you turn your love of making videos into a million dollar empire? Increasing numbers of YouTubers are doing just that. We’re spilling the beans on how they do it! We'll go over not just how much money do YouTubers make in reality, but also HOW they make it.
If you have a YouTube channel, congratulations. You are part of a community that is 1.3 billion strong as of this article. What began as a place to share home videos has evolved into the largest video social media network in the world. YouTube has become a space where people from all walks of life gather. There, they share their interests with others to teach, inspire. Sometimes they get lucky enough to start earning a nice income while working from home.
There are several ways that YouTubers can earn money. In this featured post, we’ll unravel the mystery around YouTube earnings. We'll give you some real life examples of individuals who went from zero to hero with their channel revenues.
So, how much money do YouTubers make? And how do they do it?
Standard Youtube Monetization
YouTube has multiple options for users to monetize their videos. The platform is driven by advertising dollars (remaining free for users). Nearly all of the standard YouTube monetization strategies have to do with boosting exposure to ads appearing in videos and various places around the site.
It’s possible that you may be doing some of these things already to try to increase your earnings on YouTube. However, there are other strategies we will frame here so you can get a complete look at ways to earn more and maybe hit those six and seven figures.
How Much Money Do YouTubers Make with the Partner Program?
The YouTube Partner Program gives all channels the opportunity to start earning money by allowing the related advertisement to appear on videos, although it has increasingly set new restrictions over the last few years. The general minimum requirements to sign up for the YouTube Partner Program are:
- Channel needs at least 4,000 watch hours in the last 12 months
- Channel needs at least 1,000 subscribers
- Agree to the YouTube Partner Program
- Sign up for the Google Adsense program
- Choose the types of monetization advertisements
- Videos must be viewable and meet community standards
- Be an influencer focused on growing your subscribers
- Reside in a country where the program is approved.
Earnings can vary depending on a number of factors including the quality of the videos, the number of video views, how the advertisements drive click-throughs, and how large the community is becoming. Some channels will be rejected for the subject matter or because of the use of non-commercial rights music or images.
How much money do YouTubers make using the Partner Program? It’s generally based on a number of algorithmic data points and subscriber factors.
1000 views = 1$ (10) + ads clicks
10,000 views = 10$(10) + 150$
10,000 views = 150$
George also showed the payment he received for this period, which was $115. Keep in mind that this was one of many channels he produced, so it can be different for others, but this is just one example.
Once a YouTuber becomes well-known for a certain subject matter, companies may approach them and ask them to promote their product or other offering. For example, imagine you were a YouTuber specializing in the area of childhood development. You can bet that once you hit some serious subscriber numbers with your quality videos that a company will approach you with an offer to produce sponsored videos.
The cool thing about being asked to produce sponsored videos is that you can command the prices you want, and your earnings are based on the number of views that the video receives. Let’s say you charge $50 per 1,000 views because you know that the video will get a lot of views. Your video ends up going viral and getting 1 million views. Payday is a nice $50,000 for you!
Another form of sponsored videos involves brands sending products directly to YouTubers who have a large following in certain areas. These products may be new to the market and the added exposure on YouTube is a tremendous value to them, especially if a well-known YouTube producer is willing to try it and promote it to their fans. In this case, however, the brand itself offers the YouTuber a large cash amount to sponsor the product. It is reported that some of the top YouTube earners have been offered tens of thousands in dollars to say good things about their products on a specific video or series of videos.
Affiliates and Product Marketing
Another way to go about promoting the brands you love, even if you have not been approached to do a sponsored video yet, is to find companies with generous affiliate programs. Using this method, you can self-sponsor the products and services you already use and trust on your own terms. Mentioning the company at the start with a mini-commercial can be a fun way to introduce your affiliate program to your community.
So you might say something like,”Hey, have you heard of [product name]? I use their security software to keep my computer safe from malware and viruses. Now you can too. Grab my exclusive link for a 50% discount on the first year.” It’s simple to work into practically any content. You can, however, increase conversion rates and your earnings by choosing affiliates that are a good match for your topic area and interesting to your viewers.
Products can be another way that YouTubers earn some extra cash from this platform. One thing that has become very popular is the sale of books, t-shirts, make-up, hair products, jewelry, stickers, and signed autograph pictures of favorite YouTubers who have reached celebrity status with their fans. Some are also selling and launching new software and other premiums to YouTube fans.
Multi-Platform Youtube Monetization
A growing number of YouTubers have turned to multi-platform Youtube monetization to boost their earnings and influence. Instead of staying strictly on YouTube, some individuals are promoting on other platforms too -- such as Patreon, Twitch.tv, and Facebook, to name a few. There are also those who are using videos to promote other money-making products that they’ve created, like books and programs. Let’s see what’s trending:
A new generation of video sharing and earning platforms have been built around the benefactor model. This includes Patreon, which has quickly grown to be one of the most popular. Taking its idea from a combination of wealthy patrons supporting the creative work of artists and the modern-day crowdfunding concept whereby anyone can support their favorite artists, Patreon gives YouTubers a place to direct those who are fans of their video content to provide financial help.
How it works is that any YouTuber can create exclusive content for Patreon supporters, and they have access by paying a small monthly fee (subscribers). They can mention this in their free content shared on YouTube. Patreon members love having first dibs at their favorite YouTubers and so they are willing to pay a premium to access it. And it’s not just for YouTubers, other creatives sharing content can participate.
Move over gamers as the big players are earning money doing what they love - slaying zombies and building empires from the comfort of their gaming chairs. Twitch.tv users earn money live streaming their gaming prowess, with some earning as much as $1 per watcher per hour. But this is just the start. Gamers who want to earn the real money are recording their live streams and other casual playing events for their YouTube communities where they can build even more followers.
On YouTube, serious gamers can promote their Twitch.tv accounts and invite users to buy a membership there (a measly $4.99 per user per month) to become regular live viewers. Then on the YouTube platform, they can monetize things with standard ad revenues and sponsored advertisements. Lastly, they can ask their followers to become VIP fans by making donations to them. We’ll meet one gamer who has hit it rich using these methods.
It seems Facebook has its tendrils in every other platform where money is to be made by advertising. Since introducing it’s live feeds, Facebook has made it possible for YouTubers to cross-promote their channels, gain more subscribers, and increase the likelihood that they will be picked up by some big name brands.
Interestingly, YouTube got on the sharing bandwagon early on, enabling users to share their favorite videos with Facebook and other major social media platforms. And of course YouTube has it’s own Facebook page. Any user can link their YouTube page with their Facebook page. Increasing earnings happen by promoting new YouTube videos on Facebook, aligning with social media influencers, and inviting users to become subscribers. Facebook offers paid advertising options, which work well with users who want to attract certain demographics of followers on both platforms.
YouTube Monetization Winners
There are stars on YouTube and then there are the SUPERSTARS who have taken their fame and earnings to never before seen heights. In order to inspire you to discover your own business strategy for generating big profits, we wanted to share just a few of the top earners who are making millions in YouTube profits and setting the bar high for others. We call these our YouTube Monetization Winners.
Alex Becker is the CEO of email marketing firm Market Hero, tech entrepreneur, a national best-selling author, and a serious YouTube earner. With 374,639 subscribers, he is often featured talking about ways to make money with one of his favorite luxury cars nearby. His most popular YouTube videos are “Does A Ferrari Attract Girls? – Picking Up Girls In Ferrari”, “My $45,000 Rolex (Worst Money Ever Spend)”, and “How I Went From Broke to Lamborghini”. This makes it fairly obvious who his fan base is made up of -- hungry young men who dream of having it all.
It is reported that Alex’s net worth is $15 million, much of which comes from his Internet entrepreneurial efforts and his role as CEO. Alex maintains a channel on YouTube that educates others on how to make money online and what mistakes to avoid. This nature of “giving back” is what makes his fans keep coming back for more.
Tyler Blevins who goes by the gamer name as “Ninja” is a force to be reckoned with. Still in his 20s, Tyler has become the most popular gamer on Twitch.tv, earning 226 million streaming views in 2018 and already set to maximize that number this year. In 2018, he reportedly earned $10 million from YouTube and Twitch.tv alone, and even more from his sponsors Red Bull, Uber Eats, and Samsung.
The secret to his success? His consistency and dedication to the game Fortnite, which has been wildly successful since it’s 2017 launch. Blevins was an early adopter of live streaming and turned these skills into a money-making venture by rising to the top as a player. He used his considerable gaming skills along with a deep sense of hard work, to build his empire.
The name Jeffree Star is synonymous with glamour and sparkle. In the world of YouTube, he is reported to be an $18 million earner. But Jeffree didn’t get his start on YouTube. He had a large following on MySpace and when that platform hit the skids, he did what all survivors do -- he kept moving and re-established himself on YouTube.
The first thing you will notice about Jeffree Star is that he is outspoken, bold, and brutally honest about his love of makeup. He accepts nothing less than the best. He is a rockstar in the LGBTQ community, giving them representation and helping individuality go mainstream. Jeffree continues to grow his net worth as a smart investor, and has his own makeup line which he markets to viewers. He’s also not afraid to expose the practices in the beauty industry so that consumers can be well-informed.
Grabbing Your YouTube Millions
The only way you can start making money the way these brilliant YouTubers have done is to start your own YouTube channel. Pick a subject you are knowledgeable and passionate about, then get to producing content and posting.