The answer is complicated, but not nearly as difficult to understand as Youtube Vloggers would like you to think.
Ad money is the reason you see so many videos re-posted under multiple Youtube user names.
The numbers I’m going to give you are not based on extensive research, long-term knowledge of web advertising revenue streams, and a generous dollop of speculation based on that knowledge.
Youtube channels normally won’t begin to generate any revenue at all until they reach approximately 1000 subscribers and at least 1000 views per video.
At that point, Google Ads will begin placing very generalized ads that are loosely based on the video content. These are the tiny little ad banners you see at the bottom of the video, which are easy to close.
They won’t appear on every video in that channel, and as you might guess, the payment for those ads is very low and based on the amount of time it takes for the viewer to close it out. The amount paid the channel owner is probably around less than fifty cents per thousand,
Once the channel has 10,000 subscribers and the videos in that channel begin to generate traffic that reflects those subscribers – say 5000 views per video, the type of banner ad changes.
Google knows a lot more about subscribers than you might think.
They know the location of the computer watching the video, which websites they visit on a regular basis, the probable age of the viewer, and have a very good idea of their income based on a series of data collecting algorithms.
Once Youtube traffic is high enough, the ads are more specific, and the amount earned rises to reflect targeted advertising. At this point, the channel owner will begin earning about $1 per thousand video views for those targeted banner ads.
Youtube Stars are easy to identify
Any time you are forced to sit through 15 seconds of a Madison Avenue video commercial before you can click skip ad” to get to the thing you came to see, you’ve reached the channel of someone making serious advertising revenue.
These are the people who post new videos no less than weekly, have a 100,000 subscribers and at least twenty-five thousand views per week on those new videos, as well as a rise in views on the older ones.
They will earn anywhere from $1.50 to $5 per thousand ads watched, but like before, not every video will have the upscale ads attached to them.
Success brings new income streams
Let’s say you are one of the many young women giving out personal care tips on Youtube. You might be showing people how to put on eye-makeup, style their hair, or create fancy fingernails. It’s a sure thing that you will show the products you use. You will name the brand and tell where you bought them.
You have become very popular on Youtube. Your videos always generate at least 100,000 views a week. Even if you are only earning $2 per thousand, Google is sending you a check for $800 a month, which is way more than most teenagers can earn working at the usual jobs available.
You don’t have to spend that money on new makeup or hair gel – because the companies that make the stuff are filling your mailbox with free samples of their products and begging you to use them in your videos.
An eighteen year old with a box of free makeup or spakly fingernail decorations is going to be naturally thrilled to have the chance to try out new stuff and post it online. The number of videos per week will go up, and with that rise will come new subscribers and even more video views.
Using Youtube as a primary source of income is more than possible, and the amounts earned might stagger you.
There are more than a few people who earn $20,000 and more per month from what began as helpful little videos for their families or Facebook friends.
Young mothers V-logging their pregnancies and growing babies are a dime a dozen, but some of them – to put it bluntly – are smarter, prettier, and better videographers than others.
The more prolific V-loggers will give you a tour of the baby’s nursery, show their baby shower gifts, and record their latest shopping hauls from various well-known baby stores.
They will review various products they use, naturally naming brands and where they bought them. In many cases, they are using the new style cloth diapers, aspecific brands of healthy snacks, and and are not shy about saying which ones they like best – right down feeding spoons, sippy- cups, car seats, strollers, and every other baby-related item ever made.
If you watch their videos from oldest to newest, you might notice that there are subtle changes to their hairstyles, manicures, wardrobes, and the furniture and decorations in the background. Really big screen televisions appear and they are often filming car trips to the mall or a restaurant. The cars look pretty nice. Baby clothing aficionados will note the outfits worn by the child or children are just a bit pricey.
After a year and the second child, they will Vlog that they have “grown out of their apartment” and have recently purchased a house. The house tour often looks like HGTV got involved with the decorating.
It’s hard to say how much someone earns once they are posting four or more videos a month that garner a half-million page views each. A conservative guess would be $120,000 per year. A wild guess would be somewhere close to twice that amount.
Is it worth it?
The correct answer depends on the individual V-logger. You’d have to be very thick-skinned to get past the inevitable influx of trolls and malcontents who hate everyone who appears to be living a better life.
Comments are turned off for a reason – but that doesn’t stop private messaging. You would be appalled – or maybe not – at the sorts of things total strangers spit into Youtube messages.
A young mother who inadvertently became a Youtube star and is only earning a few hundred dollars a month from ads is likely to freak out the first time a pedophile requests she show a diaper change on close-up.
A teenager who is proud of her ability to become beautiful through perfectly applied make-up will probably cry for a month the first time she receives a message saying that she is ugly and will always be ugly – or fat – or stupid – or whatever.
Then there are the real dangers…
There are crazy people out there. Some of them become online stalkers. Unfortunately, some of them become off-line stalkers, too.
The crazies have a gift for finding out your private email address and phone number. The truly dangerous ones can find out where you live and work. Shudder…
Do you still want to become rich on Youtube? Protect yourself before you begin.
Subscribe to an anonymous IP address masking service before you…
- Open a new Google account using a name that cannot be traced back to your or anyone in your family.
- Get a dedicated cellphone number you will ONLY use to verify your new Google account.
- Never post videos from your phone.
- Never log on to your Google or Youtube account until you have activated your anonymous masking service.
- Use Google Chrome when accessing those accounts.
- Once you’ve finished with Gmail and Youtube, close your browser, restart your computer, then run Disk Cleanup before continuing on with your web business.
- Never use Internet Explorer when online. Choose Firefox and use the privacy add ons available such as DoNotTrackMe. Ghostery, and AdBlock.
- Choose a subject for your channel that doesn’t require you to show your face, house, or location.
Oh, and about those multiple username copies of the same video?
Check out the number of views and the ads attached to them. Youtube won’t delete them unless the original owner complains. If you have a channel, make sure to complain. They are stealing your income.