Last week an article with the same title as this video went huge in the YouTube community, talking about YouTube creators who have huge, significant audiences yet are starving and hardly making enough money off of their audience.
Is that the normal or not? If it is, what can you guys do differently to make sure that doesn’t become you? How can you make a significant amount of money off of a relatively small audience?
It’s Tuesday, time to take a look at some of the online video news updates from last week and talk about what they need for us as creators like we do every week here on Video Creators. So this article got a lot of response from the YouTube community. It was written by a girl who has a channel with about a half million YouTube subscribers and she talks about her experience and the experience of many other YouTube creators who do have YouTube audiences in the half millions, millions of subscribers, getting millions of views, being very popular on YouTube.
But yet they work these normal jobs, she calls them, where they’re still waitressing, or they’re working at Starbucks. And they can’t do those jobs because of all the recognition that fans give them, but also because it’s really hard to do those jobs and maintain the community that’s going on over here on your YouTube channel.
If you just read it, it just feels so bleak and hopeless, like anyone who’s trying to develop a decent sized audience. It’s like there’s just no way to make it. Other creators in the community responded to it, and I’ll link to a bunch of them at the end of this article so you can see what other people have said about this.
My response to this is that I want to give you guys a plan so you don’t end up where they’re at. Where you have half a million YouTube subscribers and you’ve got like $80 in your banking account, and you don’t know if you can buy groceries.
Here’s the deal guys. I’ve worked with enough creators to know that a lot of them come to YouTube thinking that their job is to build an audience and YouTube’s job is to say thank you and give them a lot of money for it. That’s actually not how it works at all.
Your job is to develop the audience and a monetization strategy for earning an income off of that audience. YouTube’s job is to provide you with an amazing platform where you can do that.
Now thankfully, YouTube does also happen to split some of the ad revenue that they earn on the ads they display on your videos with you. Which can be nice, but let’s not bank on that. Let me just give you some real life numbers here. I’m going to use my own numbers. These are not made up. This is actually what’s happening here on this channel Video Creators, hard data, OK?
I typically earn about $2,000– $2,000, yeah that would be awesome– $2 per thousand views here on YouTube. It fluctuates, you can go look at your own RPM at google.com/adsense, and it’ll just say there what you’ve earned in the past 28 to 30 days. You can see, though, how you really do need to have a pretty significant audience to make that add up to something that’s going to pay your bills.
There’s another way, though, and that’s the way I recommend.
You wrap a business model around your audience. I have a lot of different ways I do that. One practical way is that a few times a month, maybe like twice or so, at the end of teaching something in a video, I’ll say “hey guys, if you want to take this to the next level, if you want to go deeper into this, I have an ebook.”
It’s called “30 Days to a Better YouTube Channel.” And in it, every day for 30 days, you’ll get a lesson; something need to know. You get a task; something you need to do right then on your YouTube channel. And further resources to really help you take that task in that teaching to the next level on your channel.
Every time I do that, I’ll convert about 1% of the audience into a sale. Some people tell you that’s high, but that’s about what I get. And so do the math. It’s a $30 ebook. 1% of 1,000 people is 10 people so 10 people give me $30, I just made $300 off of the same 1000 views that I otherwise would have made $2 from. And I still did make the $2, but you can see how if I’m getting $2 versus $300 for the same number of views, I’m going $300 everything time.
I know you could be thinking, “well Tim, my content doesn’t naturally lend itself to selling products and resources like yours does”. And I would tell you that you’re thinking about your channel all wrong. So here’s how to do it. It’s totally possible to do this on your channel regardless of niche that you’re in, gaming, beauty, especially expert related channels where you’re teaching something.
The way works is you need to know who your target audience is: Who am I trying to reach with my videos? And then second, you need to know your Value Proposition: What value you want to deliver to those people through my channel. And then the product that you develop has to tie in directly to the value that you’re trying to deliver to the audience you’re trying to reach.
So if there’s a disconnect anywhere in there, that’s when you get like the whole sellout thing. That’s when you get, “oh, they’re just trying to pay the bills or whatever”. That’s when you get the sarcastic comments from the people that you don’t like to hear in your comments section.
Think about it this way. A brand will come to you and say “hey, we want to pay you let’s say $1,000 in order for you to promote this product of ours because–” the only reason they’re doing that, giving you $1,000, is because they think that maybe this person’s going to be able to sell $5,000 worth of product for us.
And that’s how that economics works, right? If you don’t do that and that doesn’t work on YouTube, then the brands stop coming to YouTube doing brand deals. So you could either just go from brand deal to brand deal to brand deal just looking for the next thing of someone else’s stuff to sell to your audience. Maybe it’s a good thing, maybe it’s not. Or you can go the direction like I’ve done and say rather than going from deal to deal to deal and then just trying to keep getting those to keep revenue coming in.
If those brands think that I can sell a product and that my audience will buy it, then why don’t I just make my own thing to sell, that I am 100% confident is like super valuable, I really stand behind, I’m really excited and passionate about it, I made it myself, it has my own fingers and sweat and tears and everything into it, and something that I know is extremely beneficial and valuable and is going to rock my audience’s world, right?
I get to keep 100% of the profit, and I don’t have to go from deal to deal to deal. I can just integrate that thing into my content naturally as it makes sense. And so I don’t have to take every deal that comes along. I can take just the valuable ones that I think are really awesome for you guys and just to do those.
When you think about your channel and the business model around it, you can go full time on it much more quickly. Like for me here, this channel Video Creators after about six months after launching it, I had about 3000 subscribers. And I was making a full time income off that audience to support me and my family off this channel after only six months full time.
So again, check out my full talk about all the details of how to do this and how to think about this on your channel here, completely for free. Hope it helps you guys. And if you do have a business model wrapped around your channel, what is it? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below, how you monetize your audience besides just AdSense.
And for those of you guys who are thinking about this now a little bit, go read what other people are sharing down there. I know you’ll learn a lot from them and get a lot of ideas from them as well. And if this is your first time here at Video Creators, I would love to have you subscribe. Every week we just help you guys stay up to date with what’s happening in the online video world, so that your channel can continue to develop and grow and reach an audience. Thank you guys so much for letting me be a part of that, because I really believe that a lot of you guys have messages that need to be spread, and I love helping you grow your channel so that people hear your message and hopefully have their lives be changed as a result.
So thank you for hanging out, subscribe, and I’ll see you guys again soon.
- Get Rich or Die Vlogging: The Sad Economics of Internet Fame
- Philip DeFranco’s Response
- Austin Null’s Response
- How To Make Money on YouTube as a Small Creator
- My eBook: “30 Days to a better YouTube Channel”