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If you are wondering how much YouTubers make, the short answer is TONS of money.
Let’s first take a look at the top 10 highest earning YouTubers in 2019, according to Forbs:
At the NO.1 spot is a 8 year old kid who posts videos of him unboxing different kinds of children’s toys.
Can you believe that even 8-year-olds can make millions of dollars online by simply uploading YouTube videos of him playing with toys?!
When I first heard of this, I remembered saying to myself, “Why didn’t I think of starting a YouTube channel with my son?”
It’s not too late to start because there is always a market for kids’ videos.
As a parent, kids’ videos are a life saver for me whenever I want to have a peaceful time.
If you have kids, you will understand what I am talking about;)
As you can see from the screenshot above, his YouTube channel has a total of about 24 million subscribers.
And as of my writing today, there are a total of 36,214,569,216 views for all his videos.
That’s how popular his YouTube channel is.
When it comes to making money with YouTube, it is all about video views and the size of your following.
The bigger your following, the more video views and the money you can make.
Now, we know that kids videos are one of the most profitable niches on YouTube.
What other niches are profitable?
Gaming niches are also very lucrative.
Out of the top 10 highest paid YouTubers, about half of them are in the gaming niche.
It’s not surprising because, according to statista, the total number of video gamers in the world is estimated to be 2.5 billion in 2019 and it’s expected to grow steadily over the coming years.
Let’s take a look at how popular gaming related YouTube channel is.
The gaming YouTuber, PewDiePie, has a total of 103 million subscribers and a total of 24,626,979,504 views for his YouTube channel.
That’s 103 million people who are interested in watching a guy playing video games and doing other funny review videos.
Before YouTube was invented, the only way to build an audience and get so much exposure was to have your own TV show.
First, not everyone can get to have their own TV show.
Think of keeping up with the Kardashians.
Second, it’s freaking expensive to produce a TV show.
If you watch Game of Thrones, did you know that it costs 15 millions just to produce one single episode?!
Then, YouTube came along with its disruptive technology.
Today, it has never been easier for ordinary people to create their own show and build a huge following in a way that was unimaginable just years ago.
And the best of all, it is completely FREE.
All you need to start a YouTube channel is internet access and a laptop or a phone with a web camera.
How YouTubers Make Money
Now, you know that some YouTubers are making an insane amount of money.
So, how exactly do they make their millions?
There are a few ways that YouTubers make money.
#1: Advertising revenue
One of the main income sources for YouTubers is advertising.
If you watch YouTube, you’ve definitely seen the annoying ads that show up before a video starts to play.
Did you see my favourite two words “Skip Ads” that the red arrow pointing to?
Every time you watch an Ad on YouTube, Google and the YouTube content creators will split the ads revenue with YouTube content creators taking 55%.
Generally, advertisers (i.e. the companies paying for the ads) will choose from the following ads cost models:
- CPM: Cost per thousand impressions
- CPC: Cost per click
CPC refers to the cost which advertisers pay whenever the viewer clicks on the ads.
Generally, CPC is much higher than CPM because only a small percentage of viewers will actually click and interact with the ads.
On the other hand, CPM is the ad cost per a thousand impressions.
If your CPM is $10, that means, for every thousand viewers who watch your ads, you pay $10 to YouTube which, in turn, share the advertising revenue with Youtubers.
The main difference between CPM and CPC is that, regardless of whether the viewer clicks on the ads or not, the advertisers will get charged for the ads if ads watch time meets the specified requirement.
Let’s look at an example below.
This is one of the latest video uploaded by Ryan, the highest paid 8-year-old YouTuber.
This ads shown before his video is called a “skippable video ads”.
And the advertisers will only be charged if the viewer watches the video ads for 30 seconds (or the full duration of the video ads if the ads is shorter than 30 seconds).
Now, let’s take a look at the statistics of this video.
In just a couple of days, it’s already had almost 3 millions views for this one video.
According to InfluencerMarketingHub, the average advertiser pays $7.60 gross per 1,000 views with most advertisers paying a CPM of between $4 and $10.
So, let’s assume the following:
- The CPM is $5 for Ryan’s YouTube channel
- EVERYONE watches the ads shown on this video
As YouTube pays YouTubers a profit share of 55%, with 3 millions views, he has already made at least $8250 (i.e.55% of $15,000) from this video so far.
Let’s not forget that ads might show up more than one time for the full duration of the video.
Also, this video will continue to get more views over time.
That means it will keep bringing ads earning for him.
His videos are his income-generating assets for life, just like dividend stocks but minus all the risk.
How awesome is that!
If you are interested to see how much ads revenue you can make with your YouTube videos, here’s a YouTube money calculator that you can use to crunch out some numbers.
If you have a huge following, big brands might reach out to you for sponsorship deals.
Let’s take our 8 year old YouTuber star Ryan’s channel for example.
As he has more than 20 million subscribers who are interested in children’s toys, toy companies such as Hot Wheels & Fisher – Price will want to work with him and get him to promote their latest toys to his audience.
Why are big brands willing to pay him tons of money to get access to his audience?
The reason is simple.
His audience are their exact target audience.
Plus, his audience are his loyal fans and trust his reviews.
When he recommends a toy, his fans will probably buy it.
That is why toy companies love to sponsor his videos because he can bring them a lot of product sales.
Now, how much can YouTubers get paid in sponsorship deals?
First of all, the rate for sponsorship varies, depending on a few factors.
- Your subscriber base
- Your niche relevance
- Your expected video views
- Expected viewer engagement
Generally, YouTubers charge anywhere from $10 to $50 per 1000 views.
So, if you have 100,000 views for your video, then you will probably make $1,000 to $5,000.
If your video reaches 1 million views, then that’s about $10,000 to $50,000.
Now, let’s use Ryan’s channel as an example again.
If you go through his videos, you will see him unboxing different kinds of toys.
Below, it’s a video of him reviewing a Hot Wheels’ Ultimate Garage Playset toy.
As of my writing today, this video has been viewed more than 6 million times.
Although I am not sure how much he was paid for reviewing this toy, I wouldn’t be shocked if Hot Wheels pays him 5 figure or even 6-figure for doing this video.
Let’s say he gets paid $100,000 for promoting this product.
With more than 6 million views, Hot Wheels is effectively paying less than 1.6 cents per view which translates to a CPM of $16.
YouTubers can get paid much higher in sponsorship deals than ads revenue because most advertisers paying a CPM of between $4 and $10.
Now, if you are a famous YouTuber with a huge number of subscribers like Ryan, brands will be eager to reach out to you and offer you sponsorship.
But, many YouTubers don’t have a fan base as large as Ryan’s.
So, how do they find sponsors for their YouTube channel?
They find sponsorship opportunities through influencer marketing platforms which connect YouTubers with brands.
Here are two popular influencer marketing platforms:
Here’s how Famebit works.
On Famebit, there are many campaigns posted by different brands.
As YouTube content creators, you can bid for a campaign that is relevant to your niche on the Famebit.
Once your submitted content is approved by the brand, you will get paid by Famebit minus a 10% fee.
#3: Sell Your Own Products
When you have built a large audience, you can also start making money by selling your own products.
Let’s use Ryan’s YouTube channel an example again.
Did you know that he also has his own line of toys, clothes and games?
Instead of promoting other people’s products to his huge audience, he can make much more money by selling his own products.
According to research, the global toys market is projected to reach revenues of more than $120 billion by 2023.
That’s a huge market to be in.
With his massive audience size, it’s very clever of him to capitalize on that by starting his own brands, just like Amazon and Walmart which also have their own brands.
So, whoever owns the traffic gets to make the most money.
#4: YouTube Premium
Another new way for YouTubers to make money is through YouTube Premium program.
So, what is YouTube Premium?
YouTube Premium is a paid subscription service that provides advertising-free streaming of all videos hosted by YouTube including exclusive videos at a monthly fee of $12.
With YouTube Premium, Youtubers can get a profit share of the revenue.
How much you get paid depends on the number of video views and the total amount of watch time.
Below is a Redditor who is sharing his YouTube Premium revenue data.
You can see that, he made $387 for a total of 131,000 YouTube Premium Views with total watch time of 1,180,000 minutes.
When you convert this to CPM, you are effectively earning $2.95 per 1,000 views.
This is much lower than the CPM you get in advertising revenue because most advertisers paying a CPM of between $4 and $10.
So, YouTube Premium is still lacking behind, compared with other revenue sources,
Best Tip To Making Money As A YouTuber
The best tip I have for anyone who wants to make money as a YouTuber is to be a prolific content creator.
The truth about making money as a YouTuber is that you have to be able to generate a lot of views for your videos because traffic equals money.
Now, how do you get a lot of views?
The secret is to churn out a lot of high quality and YouTube SEO-optimized video content on a consistent basis.
This kind of works the same way as blogging.
To make money with blogging, you have to get a lot of blog traffic.
One of the best ways to do that is to create a lot of high quality SEO-optimized blog posts on a consistent basis.
This way, Google will drive tons of free organic search traffic to your blog.
YouTube is also a search engine like Google, but for videos.
To keep it simple, there are only three things you have to do to get tons of traffic from YouTube:
- You must create high quality videos that can interest and help your audience
- Your videos must target keywords that your audience are already searching for
- You must do it consistently over the long term
Let’s look at an example now.
Our 8 year old YouTuber, Ryan, has been creating fun and interesting videos for kids ever since 2015.
As the top earning YouTuber, how often does he upload YouTube videos and how consistent has he been?
Below is the screenshot of the statistics for his latest videos.
You can see that he has been CONSISTENTLY creating and uploading one video to his YouTube channel almost every single day ( at least 5 days a week)
If you look closely at his video titles, you will see a lot of keywords that are of a lot of interest to kids.
Here are some examples:
- Giant egg surprise toys
- Indoor playground with inflatable slides
- Kids playing outside
- Kids riding cars outside
- Kids playing with bubbles
Last but not least, you must have an attractive personality that can turn one-time audience into lifelong fans because that’s how you can build your subscriber list and get stable traffic from YouTube.