How To

4 ways to monetize your YouTube channel

4 ways to monetize your YouTube channel
Madison Brown

Madison Brown

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If you have the passion to create fun and engaging content for something that you’re interested in, you’ve most likely considered making a YouTube channel. You can make videos about anything: video games, food, reviews, pranks, tutorials, and music are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to topics for YouTube content.

youtube vlogger


Creating videos and brainstorming new and fresh ideas takes a lot of time and effort, and it’s very difficult to do that all while holding a job in order to make ends meet. Thankfully YouTube has made doing both possible with their partnership program.  Google’s YouTube help page says this about the program:

On January 16, 2018, we announced new eligibility requirements for the YouTube Partner Program. Once a channel reaches 4,000 watch hours in the previous 12 months and 1,000 subscribers it will be reviewed to join the program. 

This is part of an effort to strengthen our requirements for monetization so spammers, impersonators, and other bad actors can’t hurt our ecosystem or take advantage of creators, while continuing to reward those who make our platform great.

Youtube on a cell phone

It’s a lot of work, but we’ve made a guide to how to make money doing what you love on YouTube.

How to monetize your YouTube channel

1. What will you do on your channel?

Come up with some ideas for videos whether it be gaming, reviews, or a mix of a lot of different topics. YouTube is a saturated market, so make sure to think outside the box and try to present your content from a different angle. What makes you stand out from the rest? Once you have fully planned out what you want to do, start creating your videos.

2. Make sure that your videos are within guidelines

In order to become a YouTube Partner, you must meet the following criteria listed on YouTube’s help page:

  • Your content is advertiser friendly.
  • You created the content or have permission to use it commercially.
  • You are able to provide documentation proving you own commercial rights to all audio and video content.
  • Your content complies with the YouTube Partner Program policies, YouTube’s Terms of Service, and Community Guidelines. YouTube reserves the right to disable monetization for accounts that do not follow our guidelines.

If all of your content is eligible for monetization, you can apply to be reviewed for partnership. The help page goes on to detail what will and will not be eligible; for example, if you have copyrighted music or your content includes violence or anything inappropriate that violates YouTube’s Terms of Service, your videos will most likely not be eligible. If you have any more questions or what will and won’t be accepted, just visit the content page for a lengthier breakdown.

filming a video

3. Research Adsense

After you’ve been approved to become a partner, it’s time to get that cash flowing! In order to make money, your YouTube video will need to have ads. Ads can be before the video starts or strategically placed a few times throughout the video. Google Adsense is a tool that reviews ads to make sure that they’re relevant to the content of your video and of good quality. Once you sign up you can choose which ads you like, where they’ll appear, and then Adsense will approve the ones that pay the highest. Read up on Adsense and learn how it works because it is one of the most popular ways to monetize.

4. Other ways to monetize

Although Adsense is a good way to monetize, for channels that are just starting out, it might be difficult to reach the 4,000 watch hours at 1,000 subscribers if you aren’t familiar with the YouTube algorithm. In order to make a decent amount of money, you have to have a significant amount of traffic, meaning that you have to post videos frequently and on a consistent basis. This can be hard if you’re working a full-time job elsewhere.

One of the other ways is with affiliate marketing. Many companies have options for you to sign up and become an affiliate and once you do, you can order and reviews their products in your videos. You’ll receive a special link that you’ll provide for your subscribers and when they use the link to purchase an item, you’ll receive a commission. An example of an affiliate program is Amazon Associates.

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Another way you can earn to become a publisher with Brave. Brave is a web browser that specializes in supporting content creators, offering a few different methods to monetize your content in an age where ad-blocking is happening more and more. Download the browser and enable Brave Rewards. Brave anonymously tracks the number of visitors to your channel, and the more visitors there are, the more contributions for the creator. Once your contributions reach $100, Brave will send you an email to verify your channel. Then they’ll walk you through how to set up your Brave wallet, and you can view funds available to transfer to your bank account.

Brave also just launched their referral program and it has a lot of cool features. You can ask your followers to download Brave and use it as their browser, and for every person that does, you will receive $5 in BAT (Basic Attention Tokens), which is Brave’s version of currency. Your subscribers can also purchase BAT in their Brave payments wallet and donate it directly to you.

Lastly, Patreon is a great way for your subscribers to support you. With Patreon, you can set up monthly donation tiers and provide special things to subscribers who would like to go the extra mile. For example, you can start with a lower tier where, for $5 a month, you thank the subscriber by putting their name at the end of a video that you upload. For $100 a month, you can give them access to exclusive content. Put a cap on the number of donors per tier if you’d like so you don’t get overwhelmed. Patreon is great because you get a stream of revenue instead of just one donation.


5. Spread the word

Once all your ducks are in a row, spread your content everywhere. Create social media accounts for your channel, like a Twitter and Instagram page and advertise yourself. Tell your friends to watch your videos and to tell their friends to watch, too. When you send out holiday cards to your family, include a link to your channel at the bottom. Instead of getting gifts for your birthday, ask loved ones to watch, like, and subscribe. Nothing is off limits, and your goal is to get your increase your views and number of subscribers. Pitch to companies who make products that you use and if you do the job right, sponsors will come to you. Only advertise products and services to your subscribers that you actually like and can trust.

Keep working hard using these tips and you’ll be able to quit your 9-to-5 in no time.

Madison Brown

Madison Brown

Madison Brown is a Social Media and Tech Journalist for Softonic. In her spare time she likes keeping up with the newest and best in technology and gaming.

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