Five figures a month – that’s how much you can earn with youtube

Philipp Steuer explains how much advertising, product placements and merchandising bring in

How much money can be made with Youtube? There has been a lot of speculation about this question in recent weeks and months – but there has not been any really reliable information. That’s because no channel operator has been willing to disclose how much money they’re making. But now Philipp Steuer, whose videos have been viewed more than five million times on YouTube, allows us to take a look behind the curtain for the first time in a guest article for Online Marketing Rockstars. The numbers are quite impressive – but read for yourself.

"How, with YouTube you can make money?"This is the question I am most often asked by journalists and media people in the course of my work. I’d like to give you the answer to that in this article, including some small insights into the financial world of a YouTuber.

Before: All views reflect exclusively my personal opinion again.

Video advertising as the main source of income

As most should know, Youtubers get a share of the advertising revenue that YouTube/Google earns from upstream ad clips or in-video ads in their videos. Google directly keeps 45 percent of the money, the remaining 55 percent ends up with the video maker.

Per 1.000 clicks you earn about 1 Euro. This means, for example, that one of the more successful YouTube channels with over 30 million views already generates around 30 million euros in revenue from ads alone.000 euros takes. The exact amount varies greatly depending on the time of year. Shortly before Christmas, the most advertising is placed; months like January, on the other hand, are bad times from the Youtuber’s point of view, since the advertising companies have spent the rest of the year’s budget at Christmas time and the budgets for the new year have usually not yet been set.

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For all those who want to get a rough idea of the approximate earnings of YouTubers, I recommend the service Socialblade. There you will find an "Estimated Monthly Earnings" value on the respective video maker pages, whose maximum and minimum values are generally far apart. For example, if Socialblade estimates the channel operator’s revenue at between 2.000 and 35.000 Euro, you can, according to my own experience, relatively reliably assume that the actual sum is at the upper end of the lower third – in the example case, that would be 12.000 Euro.

An example of estimating the revenue of a Youtube channel at Socialblade.com (screenshot)

An example of estimating a channel’s revenue at Socialblade.com (screenshot)

What one must not forget here: The 30.000 Euros from my first example are not tax-free. The net amount ends up being around 20.000 Euro, which should still be enough for a relaxed life.

Lucrative product placements

Besides the clicks, product placements are another and also extremely important source of income for many video makers. The processing of such advertising deals is usually done by the respective marketing/sales department of the network in which the Youtuber is located.

A product placement can take different forms. Either the Youtuber simply holds the desired product in the camera. Or he visits a sponsored event and makes a vlog about it. Or he plays a new video game in advance that won’t be available to viewers in stores until a few weeks later. The possibilities are very diverse – and that’s exactly why there have been isolated problems in recent years. Especially in the beauty sector, where a large part of the videos consists of product reviews, the viewer often doesn’t know whether lipstick XYZ is really a personal highlight of the video maker or a clever product placement of a brand manufacturer. The latter would be punishable surreptitious advertising. I for my part have observed both cases several times. As in any other industry, there are – surprise – black and white sheep.

From a legal point of view, a product placement must always be labeled. Many YouTubers do this by placing a small "P" at the top screen of the video in the appropriate case. In the video description, you can often find additional tags like "Thanks to brand XYZ for supporting the video".

The price for a product placement varies greatly and depends on the size and reach of the YouTuber as well as the frequency with which the product to be integrated is to be shown. Therefore, I can not give a blanket value at this point can. But I know from my own experience that a one-off product placement of one minute on a medium-sized YouTube channel (50.000 to 100.000 monthly views) and an average video reach of 40.000 clicks to the channel operator already over 2.000 euros can bring in.

If you compare this sum with the advertising revenue, it quickly becomes clear how lucrative product placements are. For such an amount to land in the account through advertising, a YouTuber’s video would have to be viewed more than two million times.

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Further advertising in the video description

The two sources of money mentioned so far cover the main money needs of the respective YouTubers. But that is not all. To do this, you only have to take a look at the video description. There, for example, the so-called Let’s Players, who play games in their videos, also place advertising very frequently. With references such as "We use this equipment" or "We host the server here", they link to corresponding products or providers. This is of course also advertising and is remunerated by the respective company with a fixed monthly amount, not infrequently in the five-digit range. For advertisers, this expenditure seems to be worthwhile. In a case known to me alone a reference to the server in the period of the 6. December 2014 until today already over 112.Clicked 000 times.

The thing with the T-shirts

Almost every larger YouTuber also sells their own T-shirts and clothes, which are branded with the respective logo, slogans o.a. are printed by him. On large channels, such merchandise is often a big seller. For each item of clothing, the YouTuber usually receives a profit share of three to four euros from the partner retailer. At first glance, this may sound like peanuts. But if you take a look at the site of the store "3dsupply", which sells the most popular YouTuber motifs, you get an idea of the amount of money that is already being earned with this business. The sales figures per month of the first page are in the mid three-digit range. Since the store takes care of all services such as printing, shipping and payment, the video maker has no extra work, but can still enjoy a monthly extra income of 1.000 to 2.000 euros.

Fans can buy merchandising from YouTubers via the online store 3dsupply (screenshot)

Fans can buy merchandising from YouTubers via the online store 3dsupply (screenshot)

Become a millionaire through YouTube?

The numbers may sound very very impressive at first. Thousands of young people today also want to become YouTubers in order to realize their dream of quick wealth and fame. However, this plan will work out for very few people – at this point, I expressly advise against neglecting school or studies for YouTube.

Because: Those YouTubers who are currently at the top have been active on YouTube for years. The guys from Y-Titty alone started making videos eight years ago. Sure, times have changed. But the effort for videos is extremely high and eats up a lot of time. I myself am always pressed for time by a normal +40 hour week when I want to produce my weekly video after hours.

Of all YouTubers worldwide, less than one (!) Percent live. But those who have made it, currently lead a very good life. And to answer the question from the beginning: yes, you can very well earn money with this YouTube.

About the author
Philipp Steuer runs a channel on Youtube under his own name, in which he presents curious news at weekly intervals, and with which he has so far received around 90.Has generated 000 subscribers and five million views. Currently, the 24-year-old, who studied online editor, works as a network manager in the field of online video in Cologne. Among the previous stations is the digital company Google.

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