How to Make Money on YouTube - We Asked the Experts

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Can people really be making a living on YouTube? The reality is, yes, and if you are creative and strategic enough, you can earn good money doing it.

If you’re an entrepreneur looking for ways to monetize YouTube, consider this guide as a starting point.

So, the big question, how do you actually make money on YouTube?

To help us answer this more efficiently, we invited resident expert William Harris from Sellbrite to give us some insight. He knows a TON about marketing and writes about it all over the web on places like Entrepreneur, Fast Company, and – obviously, GoDaddy.

In preparation for this video, he reached out to several amazing influencers, marketers, and entrepreneurs—many with over a million subscribers—and asked them to share their advice and experience in a video.

The first question he asked was simply, “What’s the ONE tip, the one most impactful piece of advice you would give to someone who’s interested in making money on YouTube?”

Among the multiple ways this question was answered, there was a common belief that you shouldn’t start a channel just to make money. Before you do anything, it’s important to consider what you’re hoping to get out of YouTube. Very few people with the intention to ‘go viral’ or ‘become a millionaire’ actually do. Love what you do and the rest will come. Paying attention to your favorite YouTubers will reveal the techniques and best practices they follow to drive views, subscriptions, and engagement. Even if they’re not technically within your niche, it’s possible that you can adapt your favorite YouTubers’ strategies to increase your own YouTube following. Don’t be afraid to try out some of the weirder trends, either.

The second question he asked everyone was, “What’s the biggest challenge you’ve experienced with monetizing your videos on YouTube?”

The only constant in life is change and the same can be said about YouTube. To monetize your channel and start earning money from your videos, you’ll need to apply to join the YouTube Partner Program or YPP for short. Joining the YPP will give you access to a handful of features that you can use to start monetizing your video content, including Ads. After that, the ability to actually monetize all of your content depends on not only YouTube’s algorithm, and your compliance with all the guidelines regarding uploading video to their platform.

The third question asked was, “What was your most successful or profitable video and tell me why you think it worked better than any of your other videos.”

When it comes to money being made on YouTube, you’re not the only one who is profiting. Much like its parent company Google, YouTube uses its algorithm to display content that it deems most relevant to various searches in order to keep your eyes on their website. From video keyword research and exact match titles to tagging and strategic descriptions, invest a few hours learning the ropes of SEO for YouTube and continue to test techniques to help you improve your view count.

Also, diversifying your content is a common theme among successful YouTubers. Live streams can be surprisingly profitable if you put the time and effort into them. Entrepreneurs who can build a brand that is not dependent on one specific channel for revenue stand the best chance of sustaining success in the long run. If you invest all your eggs into one basket (YouTube) and the platform makes a change that hurts your ability to drive revenue, you will be left out to dry — just look at Vine or Myspace.

Making money on YouTube is hard, but it is possible. There are countless examples of people who were just like you that were able to put in enough time, energy, creativity, and consistency to make it happen. They had different journeys and challenges along the way, but they all began with the same first step: they started creating videos and never looked back.

Probably one of the most important pieces of advice that William heard was from Kallen, the YouTube creator behind Slapped Ham, a YouTube channel with over a million subscribers, when he said, “Just start!”.

So there you have it! If you want to earn money on YouTube one day, make your commitment to get started this year—don’t wait for the perfect ideas or the ideal time. Start now.

The Journey is what everyday entrepreneurs, like you, need to follow in the pursuit of online success. Our experienced GoDaddy Guides are here to take you through all the steps, both big and small, that you encounter every day.


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