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How to Earn Money from YouTube

There are 4.8 billion internet users worldwide and YouTube has 2.3 billion users globally. That’s close to half the internet users. Of these, 79% have their own YouTube account. As a powerhouse for content creators, over 500 hours of videos are usually uploaded on YouTube every minute.

A couple of years back, making money on YouTube was easy. All you had to do was create content, upload on YouTube, get millions of views and earn a share of YouTube’s ad revenue. Now, content creators have multiple ways to make money on YouTube. This is in addition to ad revenue.

Want to know how to earn money from YouTube? Read on…

1. Join the YouTube Partner Program

The YouTube Partner Program is a platform that gives YouTube creators access to its features and resources. This program also enables YouTube to share ad revenue for video ads and overlays served on your YouTube videos.

There are several types of ads that will appear on your videos once you join the program. They include…

  • Bumper ads
  • Overlay ads
  • Skippable video ads
  • Non-skippable ads

To join the YouTube Partner Program, make sure your YouTube channel follows YouTube’s guidelines and policies. You need to enable 2-Step verification for your Google Account and have at least 1,000 subscribers. YouTube also requires content creators to have 4,000 valid public watch hours.

To sign up, log in to your YouTube channel, click your profile picture, then YouTube Studio. Click ‘Monetization’ then click ‘Notify me when I’m eligible’ YouTube will send you an email if you meet the threshold. Make sure that you only have one AdSense account.

Once you join the program, you’ll receive up to 55% of your total earnings when YouTube runs video ads on your videos. To make more money and become a pro, join the YouTube Creator Academy.

2. Promote Products Through Affiliate Marketing

If you can offer brands a large audience, they can pay you to promote their products and services. Affiliate marketing is a popular way where vloggers and bloggers promote products and services. Basically, you sign up at a reputable affiliate network, and direct people to the brand’s store.

If the customers click your affiliate link and purchase the product, the affiliate network or brand pays you a commission. For this to work, you need to add your affiliate link in your YouTube video description.

For example, you’re a fashion vlogger. You upload content about the latest trends in clothing, shoes, and beauty products on your YouTube channel. To make money through affiliate marketing, sign up on one of the following networks…

  • ShareASale
  • Awin
  • Amazon Associates
  • CJ Affiliate
  • Rakuten Marketing
  • ClickBank
  • eBay Partner Network

You can choose brands selling fashion products and promote them on your YouTube channel. Alternatively, promote products and services from other industries such as…

  • Education
  • Games
  • Computers
  • Arts and entertainment
  • Business and more

You don’t have to sign up for all 11 affiliate networks. If you spread your traffic too thin, you may find it difficult to reach the minimum pay-out.

3. Print-on-Demand Dropship Products

Besides selling your DIY products, print-on-demand dropship products such as printed hats, T-shirts, posters, mugs, stickers and more. Today, there are plenty of stores that allow you to create your printed products, and they handle the rest.

A good example is Printful. Printful allows print-on-demand drop shipping. Here is how it works.

  • Sign-up and create your free Printful account
  • Connect your online store using one of the many integrations
  • Create your custom products
  • Use Printful’s mockup generator to create high-quality images
  • Upload the images to your store without worrying about inventory
  • Start promoting and selling your products on your YouTube channel

All you need to do is create videos promoting your products and include your store link in the video description. Now, sit and watch as orders come in.

Other print-on-demand drop shipping sites include…

  • CustomCat
  • Print aura
  • Printify
  • Spreadshirt
  • Teelaunch

You can create custom products such as phone cases, T-shirts, tank tops, hats, keychains, postcards, stickers, bags and more.

4. Brand Sponsorship

Brand sponsorship or influencer marketing is a lucrative revenue stream for YouTubers. Here is how it works. A brand looks for a YouTuber to promote the company, its products and services within a video.

A cosmetic company can approach a YouTuber to promote a beauty cream, makeup and more. She can promote the brand and its products by creating tutorials educating subscribers on using the product.

A good example is Michelle Phan. She started by uploading makeup tutorials on YouTube over 10 years ago. Her first video was on a natural makeup tutorial that she created using a grainy webcam back in 2007.

Within a week, over 40,000 people had watched the video. After creating a Lady Gaga makeup tutorial, Lancôme signed her as their first official video makeup artist. She swiftly exceeded 8 million subscribers, and today, her brand is worth more than $500 million.

5. Channel Memberships

Another way of monetizing your YouTube channel is through channel memberships. Basically, your fans make recurring monthly payments in exchange for bonus or exclusive content. For example, special videos, emojis, badges, live chats and more.

To start fan funding, your YouTube channel must have over 10,000 subscribers. YouTube Super Chat is a feature that lets you create a tipping jar for your viewers. They donate however or whenever. You also have YouTube Super Stickers where subscribers pay you to get their messages highlighted in your live chat.

Besides YouTube, third party services such as Patreon also allow YouTubers to monetize their fan base via monthly pledges.

Patreon is ideal for…

  • Podcasters
  • Non-profits
  • Writers
  • Musicians
  • Gaming creators
  • Visual Artists
  • Video creators and more

One of the most-watched YouTuber making money as a Patreon creator is Philip Defranco. With over 6.34 million subscribers and 2 billion views, he is the most recognizable online personality. His noteworthy show, The Philip Defranco Show, shares his thoughts on current social and political issues.

6. YouTube Premium

YouTube Premium is a subscription service that provides ad-free access to content. Launched in 2014, it started as Music Key before rebranding to YouTube Red. The service offered ad-free streaming of music videos from participating labels on Google Play Music and YouTube.

In 2018, YouTube announced its rebranding YouTube Red to YouTube Premium. Today, the service has over 30 million members and provides access to premium YouTube Originals. YouTube Premium costs $11.99 per month after a 30-day free trial.

Subscribers can watch content across multiple devices and apps, including the YouTube Music app. Through the apps, users can save videos to their devices to watch or listen offline.

As a YouTuber, you can get part of YouTube’s Premium subscriber’s subscription fee when they watch your content. To earn YouTube Premium revenue, you need to become one of YouTube’s most prominent content creators. Once you become a member, encourage your subscribers to join YouTube Premium.

7. Write and Promote an Ebook

Digital information is pervasive – from emails and texts to social media and blog posts, we share all written words electronically. Over the past decade, the book industry has experienced a shift. Since self-publishing is popular, you can make a lot of money by sharing your eBook with the world.

Today, you can self-publish eBooks with Kindle Direct Publishing. This service allows you to reach millions of readers on Amazon. Publishing your eBooks takes less than 5 minutes, and your book will appear on Kindle stores worldwide in less than 24 to 48 hours. You can earn up to 70% royalty on sales in the UK, US, Canada, Australia, Mexico, Brazil and other countries.

Kindle Direct Publishing allows you to keep control of your rights and even set your listing prices.

Read: How to create your first eBook with Kindle Direct Publishing.

Once you write your first eBook, promote it on your YouTube channel. Before you know it, you could land on the #1 spot on New York Times Bestseller list. If writing an eBook as a tutorial, upsell a course in your eBook.

For example, if your eBook is on stock trading, offer a course where readers can subscribe and learn stock trading concepts.

8. License Your Content to the Media

A lot of YouTube content creators create viral videos with mass appeal. For example, a funny clip of a cat playing the piano or exclusive footage of a plane crash or significant natural disaster. Online news sites and TV news outlets use such videos to engage their audience and make their shows popular.

To make money from your YouTube content, license your videos. The news outlets and sites will reach out to you to use your videos if they happen to go viral. YouTube allows creators to license their videos with a Creative Commons CC BY license.

If you mark your YouTube videos with the CC BY license, you retain your copyright. Other creators can reuse your content but subject to the license terms. YouTube creators can only use Creative Commons licenses on 100% original content. You cannot mark your videos with a CC BY license if your videos have a Content ID claim.

To make it easier for news outlets and sites to find your videos, list them in a marketplace such as Juken Media.

9. Spread the Word on Other Platforms

Take advantage of other platforms to increase your revenue. You can spread the word about your merchandise, discounts and giveaways on other social media channels. They include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok and others.

For example, you own a Shopify or Etsy store. You can incentivize new subscribers or customers to buy your products as follows – Buy two products and get one free. Alternatively, you can offer discounts on your products.

If you don’t have a social media account, sign up. It’s free and takes less than 3 minutes. Post your giveaway, discount or campaign on your social media channel and share the offer’s link in your YouTube video description.

The more posts you share on your social media channels, the more the views. This will grow your following beyond YouTube. It helps you make more money via YouTube through ads, fan funding, channel memberships and more.

10. Use YouTube to Popularize Your Blog

YouTube is the second largest search engine after Google. As such, it makes sense why you should use YouTube to build your brand and popularize your blog. YouTube can help you drive traffic and increase conversions and business revenue.

You can use YouTube to reach your readers and fans on other social media platforms. So, how do you drive traffic to your blog using your YouTube channel? First, accompany your blog posts with your YouTube video(s). It would be best if you made sure that your YouTube video is always related to your content. Also, ensure its professional looking and of high quality.

Second, optimize your YouTube profile for Google search engine. This will help you rank higher on Google organic search listing. To optimize your YouTube profile, identify relevant keywords with search volume. Use the Ahrefs Keyword Explorer to find keywords that best describe your videos.

Besides identifying relevant keywords, optimize your video page and link all your YouTube videos to your video page.

Third, add clickable links to your YouTube video page. Place the clickable links on your video description or as a pinned comment. When pinning the comment, make sure it’s visible even when you’re signed out.

11. Create and Sell a Digital Course

Another awesome way to make money with your YouTube channel is to create and sell a digital course. If you have knowledge on a particular topic, such as health and fitness, create a digital course and offer great value to your subscribers.

Other courses you can create are…

  • Digital marketing
  • Social media marketing
  • Personal development
  • Cryptocurrencies
  • Stock trading and more

Meet Kevin is an excellent example of a YouTube channel where the creator markets his online training programs.

His digital courses teach people how to make money in real estate. Here is how he does it. He adds his courses in his video descriptions, along with a call to action. This drives viewers to purchase his courses.

12. Product Reviews

You can do product, app or software reviews on your YouTube channel for various brands in your niche. In turn, these brands will pay you to seek exposure and sales. For example, review UberEats. Tell your viewers how to get contactless delivery for groceries, restaurant takeout, and more in your review.

Besides making orders, Uber Eats offers opportunities for people to deliver food and get paid. Explain how they can sign up and start taking orders. Product reviews work exceptionally well as your viewers are in search of information.

By reviewing products, brands, and more, you get paid, your viewers access useful information, and the brand gets more exposure. Basically, it’s a win-win for everyone.

Final Thoughts

YouTube is a bottomless well of income for content creators. There are tons of money-making opportunities. You can become a YouTube Partner and earn money from ads. Sell your merchandise, license your content, work as an influencer and more. The opportunities are endless.

You now have all the information needed to monetize your YouTube channel. All that remains is for you to take action and use two or all of the ideas above.