YouTube is a perfect place to earn a living from following your life’s passion. But like with most 'do what you love' concepts, being a full-time YouTuber is hard.
In reality, almost no vlogger makes huge money by simply creating and uploading videos – Adsense pays in cents. You will have to explore other ways, approach it differently and find out what works on your channel.
Here is a rundown on various ways to make a living on YouTube.
Upload videos frequently
If you really want to be a successful YouTuber, you will have to be consistent in creating and uploading videos. To start with, you can upload 2 to 3 videos every week. As subscribers increase which is likely to happen in 3 to 6 months, increase uploads to one in 2 days.
Make sure you give time to edit videos well and keep up with the quality.
Choose a profitable niche idea
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When you are choosing a niche, take into account what interests you and could possibly interest millions. You should look for a balance between the two. If you choose something that you are not passionate about, soon you might lose interest in research and create new content.
On the other hand, topics that don’t attract viewers do not make money. So spend a good amount of time deciding on a niche based on your talent, life experiences, and passion.
Advertise and monetize videos
YouTube has its own advertising campaign. You can enable advertising through video manager and make money as per cost per click or cost per view plan.
Roughly, for 1000 views one can earn between $1 to $3. The successful YouTuber PewDiePie earns around $23000 per video.
But until you go viral or your channel becomes big, the ad revenue from Google is not enough to make a living of it. You have to explore other avenues as well to add to the income.
Add affiliate links in the video description
Now with YouTube demonetization going on, affiliate marketing has become a lucrative alternative to earn income. You can review a product you like and recommend it to your viewers by adding an affiliate link in the video description.
To keep all the videos relevant, it is best to review products that are related to your niche. For instance, if your channel is related to gardening, you can review gardening tools, organic fertilizers, etc.
Note down comments that ask questions about your gear. Answer them with affiliate links.
Choose topics that can bring in viewers and add subscribers
Choosing YouTube video ideas that are in demand is key to make your channel successful. Look for keywords and topics that people are searching for on YouTube. Browse popular channels that are your competitors to know what’s popping. Then narrow down to topics on which you can create unique and better content.
Also, you can search for video ideas on the internet for inspiration and give them your spin.
Here is a list of 101 video ideas that you can translate to your niche.
When you have a good following with at least 20k subscribers, sell merchandise such as t-shirts, mugs, or accessories used in a video. Hire a custom T-shirt or mug provider who can make and drop ship t-shirts with your channel’s name. Loyal subscribers will buy them and it will help to build and grow your brand.
Send people to your website
While all the content on YouTube is given for free, YouTubers can offer paid content on their websites. For this, they can direct viewers by adding a website link in the description. The paid content can be ebooks, detailed tutorials, apps, games, etc.
A percentage of viewers who like your free videos would like to buy premium content and this can be a good income source. Also in case you get banned off YouTube which probably won’t happen, you have your website to keep your business going. For instance, conspiracy theorist Alex Jones is able to sell nutriceuticals from his personal website even after getting banned on multiple platforms including YouTube.
So investing in your website along with staying active on YouTube is essential, especially if the videos you create are controversial and could fall prey to changing YouTube policies.
Engage your subscribers on social media
As your subscribers increase you have to keep them active and engaged with your channel by sending them updates – new video uploads, what’s happening, etc. This helps to bring them back to view your videos and have a personal connection with them.
Create a course or masterclass group
If your YouTube channel is education-based, you can create a detailed course and sell it on your website. Many successful tutors on YouTube cover certain aspects of a skill or answer FAQs that help to attract students who want to learn it from scratch and receive personal feedback.
Using masterclass groups, paid viewers can interact with the content creator through Google Hangouts or Skype and receive personalized instructions.
Sell retail products
YouTube channel can be used to promote your e-commerce store. Introducing products by showing off their benefits through an interactive video can turn a fair portion of viewers into buyers. The success with sales depends on how popular your channel is an extent to which your viewers want to support you.
With a well-established YouTube channel, you already have a loyal audience who are ready to engage. Companies and publishers are looking for successful vloggers who can create sponsored videos and promote their products. If you have a great portfolio of videos uploaded, companies approach you or you can look for sponsors on site like Famebit.
If you make good content, subscribers are willing to send you money as a token of appreciation. To receive the money you can share your personal link. Giving shoutouts to top donors in future videos can encourage more donations. Travelers, food vloggers, and many others share the link to their GoFundMe page and receive money as donations as well.
It’s not surprising that making money off YouTube is harder now for starters. But if you constantly upload good content and gain a following, it opens up many ways to make living out of it.
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