YouTube has taken steps in recent years to entice more direct users, like creating exclusive deals with popular content creators, including Michelle Phan and Epic Rap Battles, and redesigning its home page to make it more of a destination rather than a repository. It has also addressed the issue that YouTube's core audience is too narrowly dominated by young viewers and this year signed a content deal with the NFL to host game clips and interviews.
The main revenue stream is often allowing YouTube to run ads with your content. The more traffic you get, the more you can make, says Ezarik. There are many variables that could determine how much you’ll get (and YouTube recently changed it so you need at least 10,000 lifetime views to start making money). Once you enable your channel for monetization, you’ll connect your YouTube channel to a Google AdSense account to earn money for your monetized videos.
Facebook and Twitter could pose new challenges to YouTube, because those social networks are creating their own video services. “If YouTube wants to move towards strong profitability, or to be profitable, they are gong to have to take that advertising and make it part of any actual programming,” Bajarin said. “And one way to have control over all that is to create their own content.”
For people who dream of making money on YouTube, there are lots of online celebrities and channels to aspire to imitate. There's makeup superstar James Charles, who became the first male CoverGirl model. Liza Koshy's fame on Vine and then YouTube has led to traditional film and TV gigs, including a role in a Tyler Perry film. Even pop star Justin Bieber got his start on YouTube. According to YouTube, the number of channels that earned five figures or more grew by more than 50 percent from July 2017 to July 2018. Channels earning six figures per year increased by 40 percent.
One of the main ways you can take advantage of this feature is by creating a channel trailer. A channel trailer is the video version of your description and is shown to all your unsubscribed viewers. Your trailer should be short and sweet (around 30 to 60 seconds). Focus on showing visitors what your channel is about, what they can expect to see, and encourage them to subscribe. Your trailer won’t be interrupted by ads, keeping the user focused on why they should watch more videos from your brand.