How to Make Money on YouTube

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Making money off YouTube requires more than just posting a bunch of videos and crossing your fingers, hoping for the best. To best monetize your videos, you need a marketing strategy in place before you upload your first film. Decide who your target audience is and put the right ad affiliate accounts into place so you can make revenue from every visitor.

Sign up for Monetization

Set up your videos for monetization on YouTube. This involves joining the YouTube partner program, which allows you to include automatically selected advertisements with your video, sell merchandise and take paid subscriptions. To qualify, you must own all the commercial rights to everything in your video. This means, for example, that you must own the copyright to any music in your video or have the licensing to play a specific song. Exactly how much you'll make for each ad viewed on your videos varies according to the types of ads that play and their pricing. You'll receive a share of the advertising revenue for each ad, so the more times people click on an ad or view it, the more you'll get paid. For example, the average payment per ad impression or view is 30 cents to $2.50, with some bigger YouTube accounts making up to $10 per view.

Create High-Quality Videos

Quality is key on YouTube. In fact, YouTube's video discovery system ranks videos based on the amount of time that people spend watching them, not the number of clicks. This may require investing in equipment that can help you create high-quality videos. A smartphone can typically record videos that are good quality, but a digital single-lens reflex camera with a microphone can bring higher quality. Invest in halogen lighting rather than natural light and use professional editing software rather than YouTube's minimal editing options.

Promote Your Videos with Effective Marketing

The next key to making money is making sure that your videos are seen. Every time you post a video, you should promote it on social networking sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ and Twitter. In addition, use effective meta-data techniques, which involves how YouTube indexes your videos. Write titles, descriptions and tags that are optimized to attract the most viewers. For example, titles should be accurate and have descriptive, popular keywords near the beginning. Descriptions should be limited to three sentences and include more keywords people might use in an online search. Add tags that also use relevant keyword searches and are specific to your video.

Look for Affiliate Opportunities

Reviewing other people's products on your YouTube video is another way to monetize without relying on advertising. You can sign up as an affiliate partner with a company like Amazon or Clickbank and get a percentage of every sale made from people who visit the sites from your video. Review a product or create a how-to about using the product. Then include your affiliate link in your video's description so viewers can purchase it. The amount you will make varies depending on the program's setup. For example, with Amazon, the percentage you make from each sale depends on the type of item you're selling. The percentage for general products increases with the number of products bought, ranging from 4 percent to 8.5 percent. Other items have fixed advertising payments, such as a 10 percent payment for every game that's downloaded.