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Converting YouTube Videos into Cash

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Part 5 of our blog series “Effective Social Media Marketing”

Videos are everywhere and - combined with a clever strategy - a very powerful marketing tool. Record companies, artists, influencers, event organisers, media companies and many other companies from a wide variety of industries have been relying on high-quality video material for many years in order to reach their target group. Recently we have already given some tips on which ingredients will lead you to a successful YouTube channel. But since success always comes with money, this time we’ll show you how to monetize your content on YouTube.

Money, Money, Money…

There are two direct ways of converting video clicks into a source of revenue: channel monetization through third-party advertisements and the monetization of your own content via the Content ID System. Furthermore, product placement in videos can also be mentioned as an indirect monetization option.

1. Channel Monetization:

With YouTube there is always the possibility to monetize your own videos by external advertisements, which are played before or during the video. So if you upload your own material only to your channel, then the sole channel monetization makes sense.

On the 16th January 2018, YouTube announced that increased minimum requirements for the monetization of a channel will be enforced. Since then, a channel requires at least 1.000 subscribers and 4.000 hours of play time within the past 12 months. In particular, the play time is a lot for independent record labels and not yet fully established artists! Assuming that the video channel consists mainly of videos less than 5 minutes (music videos, short tour, studio, everyday diaries, etc.). The average playback time of the videos is expected to be lower, e. g. 3 min. Accordingly, you have to generate 80.000 video views per year in order to be considered for channel monetization.

If your own channel meets YouTube’s requirements and has been approved for monetization, you can’t use it until your YouTube account is connected to an AdSense account. This can be enabled in the channel settings. It is important that you can only monetize videos where the copyright is entirely yours. For example, if you have a song in the background of which you don’t own the copyright or master/performance rights, you can’t use this video for your own monetization.

Unfortunately, YouTube does not offer any possibility to decide for yourself which ads will be played. However, you can choose between two display types: Overlay-in-video ads are ads that appear in the lower half of the video and can be clicked off or clicked on. TrueView In-Stream Ads are ad videos that appear before or during your video and can be clicked away after five seconds.

2. Content ID:

Behind the cryptic name Content ID is a YouTube song recognition system that offers a software of rights management - not only on your own channel, but on the entire YouTube platform. This is especially interesting for holders of music rights!

The music of many artists, however, is not only published on their own channel but on other channels of users who love or process the music (DJ mix, background music for their videos, remixes). In this case, it makes sense to think about using the Content ID System and not just monetization.

Monetization via the Content ID System can usually be done through music distributors. If your music is published via digital distribution in streaming services and download shops, monetization via Content ID is often already included. If this is not transparent for you, since you can usually only see the clicks and the license fees in the license statements, there is the possibility to use explicit providers for the YouTube monetization. Examples are Adrev, Vydia, Orfium. In this case, you should make sure that no digital distributor is in possession of YouTube rights to avoid conflicts of rights.

3. Product Placement:

Another way to earn money with YouTube is product placement. Here, you are compensated for placing products from an external company in your own video. If you are interested in this kind of monetization, you should always remember to inform YouTube about the product placement. You can do this in the monetization area under the selection of advertisements. YouTube constantly checks uploaded videos for product placements. If you haven’t marked them in your videos, it can quickly become expensive.

More Social Media Marketing Input?

Want to learn more about social media marketing? Then have a look at our additional blog posts on this topic!

Part 1 of our blog series “7 Tips for successful Instagram marketing”

Part 2 of our blog series “5 Tips for successful Facebook Marketing”

Part 3 of our blog series “Take the cake with 7 Twitter Tips”

Part 4 of our blog series “And Action! - Making your own YouTube Channel successful”


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