How to Make Money on YouTube: 9 Ways to Monetize

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19 Min


21 Dec 2023

How to Make Money on YouTube: 9 Ways to Monetize

Every person who has shot a video for YouTube has at least once wondered: how can I make more money on YouTube? In this piece you'll discover the comprehensive list of 9 ways to earn on YouTube!

It's no secret that making money on YouTube is a very real opportunity. The right strategy and quality content are the keys to success on the platform. Here is just a short breakdown of how much some of the top creators are making on different platforms now according to Forbes:

  • Mr. Beast (Jimmy Donaldson) - $ 82 million
  • Rhett & Link - $ 35 million
  • Jake Paul - $ 34 million
  • Elliot Tebele (F*ckJerry) - $ 30 million
  • Matt Rife - $ 25 million
  • Olajide Olatunji (KSI) - $ 24 million
  • Charli D’Amelio - $ 23 million
  • Logan Paul - $ 21 million
  • Emma Chamberlain - $ 20 million
  • Brent Rivera - $ 17,5 million

All of them used different strategies to get where they are now. So, let's dive deeper specifically into the YouTube strategies you can use to boost your revenue.

How to Make Money on YouTube?

Before we go to the advanced techniques, here are some basics for the beginners on YouTube. First step to earning on YouTube is enabling monetization on your channel. It will not be possible to enable monetization on YouTube for new channels immediately. To begin with, you will need to regularly upload and promote your videos on YouTube and fulfill certain conditions:

  • Over the past year, your videos should have received 4000 hours of views.
  • Your channel must have at least 1000 subscribers.

This is required so that YouTube specialists can analyze your videos on the channel and determine whether they comply with the video hosting rules and whether you have any violation strikes. Therefore, even if you have reached the requirements, you may be refused to connect to monetization if any misconduct has been noticed on your account.

9 Additional Ways to Make Money on Youtube

There isn't a specific or one-size-fits-all method for earning money from your videos. Your choices depend on your content, audience, and how you promote it. Now, let's explore 9 ways to make money on YouTube and understand how each one works.

1. Do The User-Friendly Advertisement

The Advertising revenue on YouTube is all about traffic. YouTube wouldn't even payout your earnings if they don't hit the minimum payout threshold of $100. So, our main goal here is to keep the traffic and CPMs growing. To start taking control over it, pay attention to what and how is advertised in your videos. It would be better to switch off YouTube's automatic placement and go for manual settings. To improve your CPMs, try the following:

  1. Use mid-roll ads for longer videos. Place them in natural breaks, like pauses or between segments, to avoid disrupting the main content.
  2. Don't overwhelm your audience with ads. Too many ads may make viewers leave. Aim for no more than one ad every 8-15 minutes for a positive viewing experience.
  3. Non-skippable ads might not always bring in more money, and they could annoy viewers. If viewers can't skip an ad, they might close your video. Let's avoid that, okay?

Extra Tip #1. Discover additional insights on optimizing your YouTube ads in this tutorial on YouTube ad revenue.

Grow Your YouTube Ad Revenue

AIR Media-Tech has helped over 3000 content creators boost their YouTube income. Reach out to us for custom revenue growth strategies! 

2. Connect YouTube Membership to Your Channel

YouTube membership is an opportunity for fans to support their favorite YouTube channels by making automatic monthly donations. The primary purpose of YouTube membership is to provide financial assistance to YouTubers to help them make videos full-time. In addition, members are provided with benefits such as member-only access to blog posts and exclusive emoticons for use in YouTube live chats.

To access YouTube membership, the channel must already be in the YouTube Partner Program and have no active strikes. Membership is not just about connecting the feature in the YouTube Studio. It is about building a loyal community around your content. To make Memberships the most effective, consider the following strategies:

  1. Consistent Communication: Keep members informed about channel updates, upcoming content, and changes in membership benefits.
  2. Exclusive Q&A Sessions: Host Q&A sessions to address members' questions, interests, and curiosities.
  3. Loyalty Rewards: Recognize and reward long-standing members with special badges or perks.
  4. Member Spotlights: Showcase members' achievements or stories to make them feel appreciated.
  5. Feedback Channels: Create dedicated channels for members to contribute suggestions, ideas, or improvements.

Extra Tips #2. Check out this complete guide on YouTube Memberships to set them up and manage them effectively.

Guide on YouTube Membership

3. Engage in Affiliate programs

You've probably seen videos where the blogger first advertises and then asks viewers to place an order at the link provided in the video's description. This kind of monetization is called a YouTube affiliate program - the creator earns a commission on every order made and paid for by his referral link. In this case, you are getting paid for results on the number of orders and their average bill.

If you choose to partner with an affiliate program, consider these steps:

  1. Choose the right media network for you. Read reviews from former and current partners, learn the rules about payments, consider the partner network requirements, and assess all of the pros and cons.
  2. Check if your channel is eligible for collaboration
  3. Join the program via the Earn section in the bottom menu of the YouTube Studio.
  4. Accept the Terms of Use and you're ready to tag affiliate products aligning with the tagging guidelines!

Engage in YouTube affiliate marketing for effortless passive income. Here are just some of the popular video formats you can use for affiliates:

  • How-To Guides: Educate and entertain your audience through valuable how-to manuals, covering products of your partners.
  • 'Best of' Videos: Rate and discuss products/services in videos like "Best Productivity Software" or "Top 10 Sneakers in 2023." 
  • Unboxing Videos: Share your experience as you open packages and reveal the contents.
  • Product Reviews: Demonstrate product functionality, share real-life use cases, and provide honest impressions. Compare products and include affiliate links to earn commissions.

Guide on YouTube Affiliate Marketing

Extra Tip #3. Take a look at this step-by-step guide about YouTube affiliate marketing to maximize your earning potential.

4. Join Multi-Channel Network

In addition to the direct YouTube affiliate program, there are also multi-channel networks (MCN). Network representatives help creators earn money from youtube views and do business with partners. Multichannel affiliate networks offer:

How much can you earn with direct and multichannel YouTube affiliate programs? It all depends on the strategy you choose. For instance:

  • With our partner Pikameo Gameplay, we opted for continuous streams, and they managed to generate roughly $2,000 and gain 6,000 new subscribers within a month.
  • Another partner experienced over 1500% revenue growth in 2023 with the help of a set of services, ranging from YouTube SEO optimization to content distribution and enhancing the ad strategy.
  • For the Canadian family-friendly channel HZHtube Kids Fun, we translated and localized their content into 12 languages, resulting in over 54 million subscribers globally on those channels, significantly boosting their income.

Every case is unique and depends on the partner's goals and the methods we choose to achieve them. If you'd like an audit and estimate from one of the top 3 MCNs globally, drop us a line.

5. Collaborate with brands

Working with brands and direct advertisers produces a much more impressive income than the YouTube affiliate program. Moreover, both methods can be combined, increasing profits. If you have a channel with many subscribers, good display statistics, and impressive reach, then advertisers and brand representatives will contact you on their own. Cooperation takes place under a formal agreement: for six months, a year, or more.
Possible formats:

  • Demonstration of an advertising product in their videos (direct advertising);
  • Placement of referral links on the channel;
  • Reviews and PR mailings.

You may be interested in brands that match the subject of your videos. Find out what other sources of additional income exist in our video guide.

6. Promote and Sell Your Own Products

If you're a YouTube creator, chances are you've got other things going on in your life besides making videos. But here's the deal: once you've got a bunch of subscribers, you've got a built-in audience that you can show off your other stuff to. Here is just a brief list of ideas on a "What can I sell as a creator?" topic:

  • Courses: Share your knowledge by creating an online course. Teach your skills or expertise to your audience.
  • Artwork: If you're an artist, sell prints or custom pieces to your fans who love your creative style.
  • Music: If you make music for your videos, release original tracks or albums for your audience to enjoy.
  • Consultation Services: Leverage your expertise to offer consultation services. Help others with what you've learned about YouTube or your niche.
  • Live or Online Events: Host events or meet-ups for your fans. Sell tickets, merchandise, or exclusive experiences.
  • Digital Products: Create downloadable content like presets, templates, or exclusive digital goodies for your followers.
  • Books: If you've got some wisdom to share or a story to tell, write a book and sell it on platforms like Amazon.

YouTube isn't just about the videos after all – it's a stepping stone to all sorts of other things to monetize on. If you get big enough on YouTube, you can even use your popularity to launch new projects. Some creators also get paid to talk at conferences or give advice on YouTube Marketing, all thanks to their YouTube fame.

7. Merch It Out

When it comes to merchandise you need to be very careful. Make sure your merch has a story your followers can associate you with or the meaning they can relate to. YouTube fans can be picky. If they think their favorite creators are just in it for the money, it can be a turn-off. So, be careful not to sell stuff in a way that makes your audience feel like you've gone all commercial on them.

  • Don't bombard your audience with constant sales pitches. Integrate merch promotion organically into your content: use/wear it yourself, tell stories about it naturally.
  • Create the atmosphere of belonging for your audience. Ask for input on merch ideas. Involving your audience in the process can create a sense of community and anticipation.
  • Whether it's T-shirts or stickers, ensure the quality is good. You want your fans to be happy with what they buy.

Pay attention to what your audience is saying. If they have concerns or suggestions about your merch, take it into consideration for future releases.

8. Go For Crowdfunding

Crowdfunding on YouTube is a way to raise funds for the development of your channel. If you regularly post quality content, you can ask users for financial support. A great example of this kind of platform is Patreon. Don't get confused about Memberships and Patreon on YouTube. You can definitely use both. It's up to your audience to choose what they prefer more. Your task is to make it more convenient for them to donate.

One of our partners was already utilizing the Parteon Service when they decided to add Memberships, incorporating levels, prices, and bonuses from their Patreon account. This allowed the author to attract new sponsors and increase channel revenue by 17% in the first month and 24% in the second month after activating Membership.

But first of all, you need to build a loyal audience and make good stuff regularly. That's where Patreon comes in. It's a place where your fans can chip in every month to support your content creation. When you decide to go for the crowdfunding, try to stick to these main rules to make it transparent and effective:

  • Clearly communicate what your crowdfunding is for. Whether it's to upgrade equipment, fund a special project, or support regular content creation, let your audience know what their contributions will be used for.
  • Provide perks for different contribution levels. It could be exclusive content, behind-the-scenes access, personalized shoutouts, or even limited-edition merch.
  • Keep your backers in the loop. Regularly update them on the progress of your project or how their contributions are making a difference. Transparency builds trust.

If you promise perks or exclusive content, make sure to deliver. Keeping your word enhances trust and encourages ongoing support from your audience.

9. Translate Your Content

The YouTube audience for English speakers is massive at 1.45 billion, with 12.2 million creators vying for attention. In comparison, there are 602 million Hindi speakers, 548 million Spanish speakers, 274 million Arabic speakers, and other languages with lower competition. This highlights the potential for you to succeed in less saturated markets and grow your revenue by translating your already existing content.

There are three simple strategies to scale through translation:

  • Start by adding subtitles and translating metadata on your main channel since 57% of people prefer videos with subtitles.
  • Progress to offering multi-language audio options.
  • For maximum impact, create fully translated and localized channels.

Our Partner Kids Diana Show launched 20 translated channels with AIR Media Tech, gathering 160 million subscribers and achieving a monthly viewership of 2.5 billion worldwide. Sounds like a great foundation for increasing revenue, don't you think?

It is even easier to opt for translation starting in the year 2023, as YouTube has introduced a multi-language audio feature. This allows creators to add dubbing to both new and existing videos, expanding their audience reach. Keep in mind, though, that YouTube doesn't generate audio tracks, so creators need to handle translation and dubbing independently.

Wrapping up

A blog on YouTube is the game of the future. You won’t be able to earn much all at once. And you will not have advertisers knocking on your door until you have an audience in the thousands or millions, and most importantly - a loyal audience. Keep in mind, in the beginning, you can expect only a tiny income from AdSense advertising. Consider it a bonus for your efforts, rather than decent pay for your work. But, if you are ready to play the long game and see the appearance on YouTube as an important and necessary stage of your development - then you’ve got to try and see how everything works out for you!
For our part, we at AIR are ready to back you up in reaching your goals as soon as possible.


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