5 Ways to Get Paid & Earn Money on YouTube

By: Rita Cunha | January 4, 2021

If you have a passion for video content, you may have just found an extra stream of income. YouTube pays its content creators to be original and entertaining on the platform. And since there are billions of avid viewers logging on to watch YouTube videos every month, you could potentially make a good full-time income from the platform.

“But how do I get paid on YouTube? What do I have to do?” We hear you. This article goes into the nitty-gritty of monetizing your YouTube channel, from Adsense revenue to brand deals and more. Stick around to find out.

The Best 5 Ways to Get Paid on Youtube

YouTubers seem to live a very lavish lifestyle, so how do they do it? How does YouTube pay for videos? Easy, in these five ways!

Enable Ads on Your Videos

The easiest and most common way to monetize on YouTube is ad revenue. This is why you see so many ads on YouTube videos. As long as that video is advertiser-friendly, the content creator will receive 55% of the revenue generated (the other 45% goes to the platform).

Advertiser income is easier to understand than most people think. If you get these metrics, you won’t have any issues monetizing your content.

For starters, there’s CPM (or cost-per-mille). This means you will get some ad money whenever someone watches your ads (bonus money if they watch the whole ad). As an example, a million views can get you anywhere between $3,000 and $10,000 in Google Adsense revenue alone.

Secondly, CPC (or cost-per-click) also affects how much money you will get. If you have a high CTR (click-through-rate), meaning if a lot of your viewers click on the ad, you will get even more revenue.

Sounds great, right? Fortunately, signing up for the YouTube partner program is incredibly easy. All you need is at least 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 watch hours on your channel.

If you meet those eligibility requirements, congrats! The next step is creating a Google Adsense account and connecting it to your YouTube account to start making money.

Post Sponsored Content

Sponsored content is another awesome way to monetize your content. Brands will pay you to talk about and show their products in your videos. This is a type of influencer marketing that gets more popular by the day.

To start getting paid, you need to ensure you have a loyal viewership. Take note of how many subscribers you have and how many views your videos get on average. Then, reach out to your favorite brands with that data and inquire about sponsorship opportunities.

The top earners make a lot of money this way. Sometimes, brands are willing to pay four figures or more for a shoutout. Just remember that if you live in the United States you must disclose if your content is sponsored in a clear way!

Charge Followers for Extra Content

You don’t have to stop at sponsored content or the YouTube Partner Program. You can make even more money from your channel. For instance, you could start charging your subscribers for an extra YouTube video here and there.

YouTube Premium is a program you can use to do just that. If you have a video project you want to try out and have your followers pay for, you can upload it there.

Patreon is another alternative. While this crowdfunding platform doesn’t belong to YouTube, it is quite popular among YouTubers and other content creators. Patreon is a place for you to upload original content and get paid extra for it.

Sell Your Own Merch

Once you get enough subscribers to have some recognition, you can launch your line of merch. This is a monetization option especially interesting for artists, but it’s not at all limited to them. You can sell shirts, home decor, mugs, art prints, or even your own book!

Stream and Get Donations

Lastly, you can also double as a streamer. Twitch is a very popular streaming platform, especially popular among gamers. But even YouTube has given creatives a way to stream content on the platform. The best thing about streaming is that you will get donations straight from your subscribers’ pockets, which can prove to be a very lucrative complement to ad revenue.

How Much Do You Get Paid on YouTube?

Probably the most frequently asked question about starting a channel is “How much money can I make on YouTube?”

Unfortunately, it’s hard to say. As you saw earlier in this article, a lot of factors may affect your YouTube earnings. Your number of followers, monthly views, advertising revenue, and sponsorships must all be considered.

However, it’s safe to say some YouTubers (for example, Pewdiepie) are rolling in cash thanks to this video-hosting platform. Forbes routinely reports how much the top YouTube stars make every year.

In 2020, the channels bringing in the most money on the website were Dude Perfect, Mr. Beast, and Ryan Kaji (oddly enough, a nine-year-old who made $29.5 million in one year alone).

How to Grow Your YouTube Channel: 9 Tips

If you dream of making it big one day like those big-names we dropped, you will need to grow your YouTube channel. Here are the top tips for beginner content creators.

Pick a Profitable Niche

First things first, we have to point out: the amount of money you make from ads depends on the topics you address in your videos. This factor is also known as your “niche.”

For example, if you make videos about investing in the stock market or about real estate, you will make more money on ads per million views. That is simply because advertisers in those niches are willing to spend more money to promote their products and services.

Of course, you can pick a less-profitable niche. It is all up to you. But if you have an interest in a profitable topic, go for it!

Set Your Branding

One thing is incredibly important when setting up your YouTube channel. If you project a clear image, there is a chance you will raise the number of video views you get every month. This is especially important once you start considering more “advanced” monetization options, such as brand deals and sponsorships.

Post Consistently

The YouTube algorithm clearly rewards uploading videos consistently. It might be a good idea to set up a schedule you can work with and stick to it.

Post Frequently

Additionally, the algorithm also likes it when you post a lot on your YouTube account. For example, you may get a higher number of views per video if you upload three times instead of only two times a week.

However, do keep in mind that quality is still king. Uploading lower-quality videos will likely lower your performance, which means YouTube won’t suggest your videos to users as much.

Try to Stand Out

This platform has been around for over a decade now. Before there weren’t that many content creators active and it was easy to make money on there, today it is a whole other story.

Nowadays, YouTube creators have to go above and beyond to simply get noticed by the users of the platform. It is all too easy to blend into the background and not have a large viewership. Thus, over the years, creators have had to get creative and stand out.

If you want to be successful on YouTube, it’s recommended that you think well and hard about what type of content you want to make. For instance, if you want to become a beauty blogger, what is something in that niche that other YouTubers haven’t tackled yet? What can you offer that is different? This is how you will leave your mark on the platform.

Jump on Popular Trends

But that isn’t to say you can’t do the same things other YouTubers do. You can, and you should! Certain video ideas and challenges go viral for a reason: people love watching that type of content!

If you spot a YouTube video that is performing rather well, it’s wise to make a video inspired by it. Don’t copy other creators, though. Get inspired and add your own twist. If you are successful, you will see your video views go up, as well as your ad revenue.

Use Keywords to Your Advantage

Did you know you can use keywords to bring more people to your YouTube videos? It’s true. Search engine optimization (SEO) is more popular with blog writers, but YouTubers can (and should!) take advantage of it too. Pick some keywords or topics that are trending in your niche and get to work incorporating them into your content! Your title, meta description, description box text, and tags can all make you rank higher on Google’s search page.

As an example, let’s imagine you are a beauty content creator and that a new line of foundation just came out. You could make a video review or a few tutorials showing how to apply the product and incorporate SEO into your content. Then, if you’re successful, your video will get recommended to anyone who looks up that product on Google. (Bonus money if you include an Amazon link in your description, once you are signed up for an affiliate marketing program.)

Besides that, if your video starts trending and people share it on social media, you will get more video views. And what do we know about that? That YouTube pays you for every person who lands on your video and watches at least five seconds of an ad.

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