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Can You Still Make Money on YouTube?

You don’t need thousands of subscribers to make money on YouTube. Learn the income sources that make real money.

2018 was supposed to be the year of video for many bloggers, the year we start making money on YouTube and other video sharing sites.

Then YouTube threw up a big middle finger to small blogs with less than 1,000 subscribers, making it harder to make money.

But is the change in YouTube’s advertising policy really an issue? Should the fact that you won’t be able to run ads on your videos keep you from making money on the world’s second most popular search engine?

Let’s look at how much money people make on YouTube, from the YouTube celebrities to smaller channels like you and me. Then I’ll show you how to make money on YouTube regardless of how many subscribers you have, income sources for your videos that will make many times over what YouTube ads pay.

What Happened with the YouTube Advertising Change?

So if you haven’t been active on YouTube yet, you might not have heard about the new change in advertising policy. It all started last year when advertisers complained about ads being shown on racist and low-quality videos.

Protecting the money rather than its video creators, YouTube instituted a policy that channels would need 10,000 lifetime views before they could make money on ads embedded in the videos.

It didn’t help.

Complaints kept coming in from advertisers of low-quality videos and questionable channels so YouTube drastically increased the requirements starting this year.

Video creators now need 1,000 subscribers and at least 4,000 hours of watch time over a 12-month period. Both of these are extremely high hurdles.

I’ve analyzed over 200 YouTube channels and found creators with less than 1,000 subs get an average of three to five subscribers for every video uploaded. That means between 200 and 300 videos before you’re likely to reach enough subscribers to qualify to make money on your videos.

Even YouTube channels with 1,000 subs are being kicked out of the program because of the 4,000-hour requirement. If the average watch time per video is around three minutes, you need a constant stream of videos and new views to hit that 240,000 minutes each year to stay in the program.

How Much Money Does YouTube Pay You for Advertising?

To see why I could care less about the change in YouTube’s advertising policy and how to make money on your videos, you have to start with how much YouTube pays for ads.

making money on youtube 2018Most bloggers start making money with Google Adsense on their blogs. The pay sucks, averaging between $0.006 and $0.015 per page view, but it’s quick and easy.

YouTube ad rates are even worse.

YouTube shares 55% of its ad revenue with video creators and books an average of $7.60 per 1,000 ad views. That means you get about $4.18 for every 1,000 views of ads shown on your videos.

That’s just $0.0042 per view and doesn’t even count if someone clicks off the ad before a certain time has passed.

I know it’s a lot of numbers but stick with me for a second to see just how crappy a deal this is.

If you publish two videos a week and get an average of 500 views on each, an extremely ambitious goal, you’d still make less than $20 a month.

How Much Do Famous YouTube Celebrities Make?

Everyone gets pulled into the myth of making money on YouTube by the millions made by a very few YouTube stars. Exact income isn’t shared but estimates are pretty easy to come by with the top ten all making more than $10 million a year from ads on their channels.

Six-year old Ryan of ‘Ryan’s Toy Review’ is estimated to make $11 million by opening and playing with toys in videos for his 10 million subscribers. I think my 5-year old son is responsible for about half of the views on the channel.

Daniel Middleton is estimated to have made $16.5 million by playing Minecraft in videos for his 18 million subscribers.

But think about those numbers. NBC gets about 18 million viewers for its Sunday Night Football broadcasts, the #1 rated show on TV. If the show was on YouTube, it would make just $1.2 million for the 17-game season…

YouTube celebrities are getting millions of views on each video and making a fraction of what is being paid on traditional media. You have to reach nearly 12 MILLION PEOPLE a year with your videos just to make YouTube a full-time job based on what you make with ads.

How to Make Money on YouTube – the Real Way

Making money blogging or on YouTube has never been about selling advertising space. I’m always amazed when I read a blog post and have to scroll through four ad blocks within the content. It’s so annoying and how much is that blogger really making off the ads?

Making real money has always been about finding the income sources that pay more, the income strategies that don’t depend on millions of monthly views.

how to make money on youtube

How to Make Money on YouTube Every Month

Affiliate advertising is a good start but still not the best income source for bloggers and video creators. I make an average of $0.09 per page view from affiliates, that’s from people clicking through to an affiliate and then signing up for the service.

Sure, it’s harder to get an affiliate commission than it is to simply get someone to click on an ad but the payout is much higher.

Making money with affiliates on YouTube works the same way it does with a blog.

  • Find three or four affiliates that speak directly to your target audience, that solve a common problem.
  • Create a video reviewing the service and how it helps users
  • Create a demonstration video specifically for your auience
  • Interview other users of the affiliate
  • Copy your affiliate link in the description to the video, preferably within the first few lines

Sponsored videos are another way to monetize your YouTube channel without having to rely on embedded ads. Again, this works the same way as sponsored posts on your blog.

Talking with other video creators, I’ve found an average rate of between $0.05 and $0.15 per view for sponsored videos. So if you get an average of 500 views each video, you can charge a sponsor about $50 to mention them during the video.

That’s more than 20-times what you’d make from YouTube advertising!

The final way to make money on YouTube, and this should be your goal in blogging as well, is to create your own courses and products. Any time you remove the advertiser and connect directly with your viewers for your own products, you are going to make more money.

best entrepreneurship books to readThis means quick products like self-publishing and printables as well as the higher-value products like video courses. If you can convert just one viewer in every 1,000 views to your $250 video course, you’ll have made $0.25 per view…more than 59-times what you would make with YouTube ads.

Want more ways to make money blogging and on sites like YouTube? Check out Make Money Blogging, a step-by-step into nine ways bloggers make thousands a month. I start with the easiest and fastest ways to make extra cash before detailing the strategies that make thousands a month. No fluff or general ideas here, just a step-by-step guide to getting each strategy set up to make money every month.

Making money on YouTube doesn’t have to depend on advertising and it certainly doesn’t mean being held back by new YouTube advertiser policies. Learn how to make real money blogging and with videos by using the income sources that make more money per view.

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