How to earn money on YouTube

How to earn money on YouTube bchellingworth June 8, 2020

No expenses spared

Chances are, if you’ve recently created and published a blog or vlog, then you’re likely to have to wait to reap any decent revenue so what do you do about covering your expenses in the meantime?

You don’t have to be a financial wizard to work out what businesses have faired better since lockdown. In May, the Financial Times reported that UK consumer spending had increased by a whopping 50% on digital content and subscriptions to TV and game streaming services presumably driven by the need for people to keep themselves entertained and occupied. In contrast, there was a 97%, yes that’s 97% fall in revenue for bars, pubs, and clubs.

Time to give it a try?

Who is actually motivating people to watch their content, well, you will have gathered that YouTube is no longer just the home for your funny pet videos. The self-employed, TV networks, musicians, and small businesses are amongst the people finding they can make money by creating entertaining content on a YouTube channel.

If you’ve been wondering if it’s worth putting the effort in to become a YouTube sensation then now is a good time to give it a try. Going full-time is a big decision – check out our blog on “When to Go Full-Time With Your YouTube Channel” for more information. But even if you’re considering it initially as a part-time option, it’s clear from the billions of videos being devoured each day that if you have an active but more importantly, entertaining YouTube channel you can make money.

However, before launching a channel that you hope in time will be revenue-generating, it’s important that you choose what income streams you’re interested in. Do you want to generate ad revenue from the get-go or are you wanting to promote your own products and services? Hubspot provides a free download guide ‘How to use YouTube for business – A 30-day roadmap for channel growth’. They also give the following three examples of how you can generate revenue:

TrueView Ads

Essentially, if you have a story to tell that has a strong connection to your product, this is your opportunity to create longer creative spots that appear adjacent to YouTube videos that your target audience is already watching.

T-Series YouTube Partner Program

This allows the most successful YouTube channels to make money by serving ads that are made and paid for by other YouTube uses. However, the criteria for this changed in 2018 and now requires that your channel has reached 4,000 watch hours and 1,000 channel subscribers in the last 12 months – think of that 50% increase I mentioned earlier. It could now be more achievable to reach these two milestones.

Affiliate links

Marques Brownlee, a hugely popular YouTuber uses this option and seems to be doing okay! As an affiliate, there is no eligibility requirement as you’re taking advertising into your own hands. This could be ideal for you if you’re considering a channel that offers reviews, how-tos, and recommendations of new products. As of 8 February, the richest YouTuber in the world was a 7-year-old called Ryan Kaji who at the age of 3 (with the help of his parents) set up a channel to review toy products. His videos are watched by more than a billion people. I know, I couldn’t believe it either!
If you’re worried about covering your expenses while you wait for the income to come pouring in, don’t let it put you off. You can offset any expenses that meet the ‘wholly and exclusively rule’ when setting up, for example.

  • Equipment – cameras, laptops, tablets, mobile phones, furniture (such as a gaming chair), repair costs, printers, prizes for giveaways;
  • Fees – domain costs, editing software, trademarking fees, copyright fees, advertising fees, legal fees, accountancy fees, web-hosting fees, trade show fees, conference entrance fees (Vidcon / YouTuber conferences, etc);
  • General costs – postage costs, phone bills, hotel stays (for business trips), use of your home as your office, travel expenses to business events;

The Showbiz Accountant can help you offset these expenses against income, either which you’re presently generating (from other sources) or they can advise you regarding delaying claiming expenses to a time when income is received. Call on 0203 384 2224 for a free initial consultation. Maybe, now is the right time for you to give it a go and who knows you could be the next YouTube sensation, best of luck.

‘Great works are performed, not by strength, but by perseverance.’

Samuel Johnson