How to make money from YouTube videos

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By in Make Money. Updated July 2016.

Remember that viral video you laughed at yesterday while chowing down on your doughnuts? That video could have earned the creator more than £100,000.Make money from YoutubeWe’re not kidding when we say you can earn money from YouTube videos. And it might just be the funnest money-making gig EVER!

While it sadly isn’t as easy as clapping your fingers and the money appearing in your bank account like magic, making money out of YouTube videos is still a relatively simple concept.

And, in an effort to help you earn some dollar, we’ve put together this step by step guide. Send us some of your earnings maybe?

How much money can you make?

Rich StudentStraight in there with the killer question, you shrewd lot. Well, the answer is a bit of a mixed bag really, if we’re honest.

While you might be lucky and find a video clip of yours goes viral and earns you £100,000 (like the guy who uploaded a clip of one of his son’s biting the other one’s finger), this is very unlikely. That said, if you have got something funny, by all means give it a shot.

You’re much more likely to build up revenue by getting an audience through constant content, whether you’re making vlogs, cat videos or just talking about custard creams.Student Fred Pye earns money from YouTubingYou might remember the tale of 17 year old Fred Pye – he hit the news recently for earning £24,000 a year by making walk-throughs for Grand Theft Auto.

But as we said, it isn’t all like this. Livie Rose, a beauty blogger from Brighton says her pay fluctuates from thousands one month to £50 the next, and some people only report a few pounds here and there.

What can you realistically expect?

poundsign_shakyAs a benchmark you can expect to make around $1.50/1000 views. This means that one million views = $1500… That’s around £880 to us English folk.

However, keep in mind that a lot of the channels (such as Epic Mealtime) sign advertising contracts with certain companies or even promote their own merchandise, like T-shirts, which can earn them even more on top of their views alone.

It’s hard to put a total on this but the possibilities are endless depending on what your videos are about.

How does it work?

Explaining how earning money on YouTube worksThe basic deal with this is Google Adsense, a nifty little programme that allows you to monetise (we love that word) your website or videos with adverts.

After you’ve signed up with the beast that is YouTube and built a decent amount of followers and views you’ll receive an email asking if you want to monetise your videos. You’ll then be able to select your best videos to make money from.

The basic gist of this is companies pay Google to advertise on your videos and you’ll get a cut of the profit.

Just to be clear, you can’t monetise any videos with copyrighted material in them. So no nicking other people’s stuff y’hear?

What do you need to get started?

Best startup equipment for YouTube videosDepending on what you’re planning on filming you’ll need to get your setup sorted from the beginning.

There’s no point having good content if you’re filming it on your iPhone. A decent setup goes a long way towards showing that you’re serious and having people respect your videos.

You’ll need:

  • A decent camera – Quality is important and you’ll need to record your videos in full 1080p HD.
  • Video editing software – Both PCs and Macs have pretty decent video editing software (Movie maker & iMovie) but Adobe Premier is a decent option for advanced users.
  • Sound recording equipment – Most cameras come with a microphone but if you’re looking for top sound quality you might need to purchase a decent microphone.
  • Lighting – This is not an essential but some top Youtubers swear by it.
  • A decent backdrop – If you’re filming a vlog or pieces to camera you might want to set up a decent backdrop. You can stick with plain white or jazz it up a bit with a collection of posters for example.

How to make the best YouTube videos

watching videosAs we said before, the way this works is you get popular then you get paid. You can’t sign up to monetise videos no one has watched yet.

It makes sense really, who wants to pay to advertise on a billboard no one walks past? Yet while building up a decent audience might seem daunting, there are some easy tips that might help you get there sooner:

  • Choose your genre: One of the most popular genres on Youtube is gaming walk-throughs but it’s a pretty competitive. Take some time to think about what you can do well and whether you think you can make a success of it. Other genres that work well are: product reviews, comedy, how to’s, sports and films.
  • Choose a good username: Sounds trivial, trust us, it isn’t. You need to make your username memorable and steer clear from numbers and random characters. Yes, that means Xxx_ponysrock92_xxX is a no go. Sorry.
  • Catchy relevant titles: Make your title both catchy and relevant. That way people will remember it, and more people will stumble across it if they’re searching for something similar.
  • Upload regularly: You won’t build an audience if you stop posting! Remember, the longer you keep that audience locked in, the more monies you get.
  • Be original: There’s nothing wrong with tried and tested formats such as reviews or cat videos, but you have to make sure you stand out from the crowd. Go forth and be different kids!
  • Show your enthusiasm: You need to be creating videos about something you love. Having a passion for your videos will show! If you don’t love what you’re doing you’ll soon get bored and the videos will start to show that. The passion comes first and the money comes second…

Always make sure to follow the rules too; no inappropriate content, copyright or spamming. Play nice and you’ll be fine.

How to make more money on YouTube

This student knows how to make money on YouTube!If you’ve built up a pretty sizeable base and have a dedicated audience, there is one other avenue to explore aside from Google Adsense and YouTube itself.

Patreon is a great little web tool that allows your fans to sign up and donate money directly each time you post something new.

The key to this is building up an audience that appreciates you – if they like what you do the chances are they can be persuaded to part $1 or more each time you upload. Yes it’s US money, but money is money!

Also, as mentioned above, you can approach companies to talk about advertising or at the very least free sample for you to review/talk about.

You might even want to branch out into creating your own merchandise once/if you make a name for yourself.

Some of the big shots on here are earning about three thousand dollars every time they post a new video. Yes you read that right.

So, have you decided to give YouTube video-ing a crack? We’d love to see your efforts and hear how it went! Make sure to hit us up in the comments below.

See our 39 other ideas on how to make money.

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10 Responses to “How to make money from YouTube videos”

  1. Melissa

    06. Oct, 2016

    I’m a 42 year old mother who is facing the challenges of raising a transgender 14 year old. FTM) I know that a lot of parents don’t know what to say or do, it’s simple, you just DO!! Would you want your child to be happy or there’s always the alternative, that I’m not willing to allow happen because parents can’t live their flesh and blood unconditionally. We need more parents to speak about this and it’s just the it is, accept and help your child love who he or she is. Let me know what you think??

  2. JesterBumblebee

    20. Nov, 2015

    I loved this post – I’ve made a couple hundred bucks myself simply trying to help people get that nasty wart off the bottom of their foot. (Plus others) No big deal – but a needed service, and it shows. 🙂

  3. Jon Brooks (Music Composer)

    14. Nov, 2015

    I monetise my videos… it’s well worth doing for a little extra pocket change! I have around 5,500 subscribers and over 3 million video views.

  4. Luke

    22. Mar, 2015

    Backround noise in your videos can annoy some of your viewers so you should keep that low.

  5. Andy

    30. May, 2014

    Cheers dude, your website is great by the way, helps with a lot of stuff money wise 🙂

  6. Andy

    29. May, 2014

    Dude, you forgot to mention the costs of buying recording software etc especially for console users they cost loads…

    • JeremyW

      26. May, 2016

      Dude no need for consoles, there are so many great mobile handheld recording devices with top notch sound quality and high fidelity audio and built in microphones. I personally use a portable digital Tascam recorder called a pocket studio, like basically a digital 4 track recorder that can do multitrack recordings. A bit complicated and intense for the novice user but many devices out like the Zoom handheld recorders and the iRig little mini USB type devices that are audio interfaces will provide you with some excellent options for recording audio. Make sure to use a soundproof environment and try to minimize echo if and when you can.

    • Jake Butler

      30. May, 2014

      Great point. Although there are a lot of videos that have been shot on potatoes that have gone viral… sometimes it’s a selling point.

      • Andy

        30. May, 2014

        Dude I’m sure, but the majority of people here won’t wanna be filming no potatoes. If I made a great point, why not add it to your guide? U gotta consider you tube from everyone’s point of view ya know? 😀

        • Jake Butler

          30. May, 2014

          Fair point, I was just joking a little.

          I have added it to our list of updates (we have over 100 guides to keep updated on the site) and will make sure it’s added with the next version of the article.


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