Go Viral With Videos and Earn via YouTube

Many of us are looking for creative ways to earn money these days. Whilst it would be lovely to think that we could all make our fortunes doing exactly what we loved, the fact is that a lot of us are doing whatever jobs we can in order to stay in employment and keep a regular salary coming in.

Charlie bit my finger

Therefore, it is exciting to learn that you can still have fun and pursue a hobby and perhaps make some money from it at the same time. Working out how to earn money via YouTube might require a bit of time to get your head around, but once you’re up and running it will be very gratifying to get paid for making other people smile or think with your videos. It’s very unusual to make any significant amount of money in this way - the stories of videos that have gone viral on a global scale are few and far between - but it is possible to make a little bit extra that will boost your monthly income.

What is YouTube?

www.youtube.com is a website and social media channel that allows its users to share videos that they have created with friends, families and potentially an even wider audience if their content is popular. Viewers can comment on the videos and rate them, as well as chatting to others about what they thought.

Many organisations are now realising the value of having their own YouTube channel, where they can release content that is pertinent to their line of business or even tutorials about their products and services. It is also possible for individuals to post useful information videos, such as descriptions of how to perform certain DIY tasks or a step-by-step guide to setting up a blog.

Given that we now live in a society where people are often spending many hours a day looking at screens, it makes sense they they might want to access fun or interesting videos as well as work-related materials. YouTube is a great forum for sharing such videos and really successful ones can get views that number in the hundreds of thousands, or even millions!

How do I register?

You don’t need to set up an account simply to view videos, as most of them (unless the owner has restricted the viewing permissions for some reason) are available to everyone through a simple internet search.

However, if you are hoping to upload videos and make money from them then you will need to set up a YouTube account. Registration is quick and easy and doesn’t cost you anything and once you’re up and running you will able to to add videos as and when you choose.

How do I make videos?

How you choose to make your videos will depend completely on the subject matter and who you have identified as your target audience. Clearly, if you are a large organisation then your videos should be scripted, directed and filmed professionally in order to maintain the reputation of your company. For most of the rest of us, who are not pretending to be anything other than amateurs, a normal video camera or even a mobile phone will be absolutely fine.

It is worth taking time to consider how you could improve the sound and light quality of the videos you take, as the best content in the world will be ignored if people can’t see or hear it very well. If you are taking ‘candid camera’ type videos, i.e. you’re filming on the off-chance of being able to capture unplanned moments of children or animals being funny or a flash mob-type event, then you won’t necessarily be able to get the highest quality video. This won’t matter, however, as viewers will be watching for other reasons and could actually end up doubting the ‘random’ circumstances in which the video was filmed if it looks too perfect or staged.

What should my videos be about?

That is completely up to you. You may wish to take videos of your family life, you may wish to plan videos that will be informative for others or you may wish to just do something else entirely, like animation. As long as you’re interested in what you are filming, the chances are that others will enjoy seeing what you’ve filmed. One example of a hobby that has translated into a successful online video enterprise is the person who started filming herself creating certain make-up effects in order to show others how to achieve them simply and easily at home. Because the videos were easy to follow and used products that were easily available and not too expensive, they became hugely popular and led to their creator being offered all sorts of other opportunities, not the least of which was the chance for her to make money from what she was doing.

How do I get people to watch my videos?

Bringing your videos to the attention of others is what will start to earn you money from them eventually. You can make good use of other social media channels such as Facebook and Twitter to share links to your videos and get people engaged. Once you have a few followers on board, you can encourage them to share their links with others and increase your audience. Unless you are the one person in a million who experiences their one and only video going viral, you will probably need to post content pretty regularly in order to maintain the interest of your audience. In any case, the more videos you make and post, the better your videos will become - practice makes perfect as they say - and therefore you’ll be increasing your chances of coming up with a hit.

How do I make money from my videos?

Most people make money via YouTube because advertisers catch on to the popularity of a certain video or genre and choose to place advertisements on the same page. You are unlikely to attract the attention of advertisers if you only post a video every few months or if your videos aren’t being viewed by a reasonable number of people. Therefore, you will need to grow your audience using the methods above before you can expect to earn any money.

Once you feel confident in the following your videos have gained, you can apply to become part of the YouTube Partner Program. This will give you access to online tutorials that will help you increase your fan base and develop the quality of your videos further. You will also be given assistance with monetising your videos by matching them with complementary advertising partners.

Registration with the Partner Program is free and you can find out more by following this link:

Youtube partners

Don’t forget that you own the copyright for any original videos you create, so you are free to see if other websites might like to pay to use them as well. For example, parenting websites might like to use videos of you explaining how to build a baby’s cot or prepare meals for when the time comes to wean a child.

Is there anything else I should know?

Be aware that once something is up on the internet, it is potentially viewable by anyone at any time from then onwards. This is especially relevant if you are filming videos of your children - just bear in mind that you cannot control who might end up seeing them. Also, you must always get the permission of anyone who appears in your videos to use the footage and to post it online. If in doubt, you could get them to sign something that shows they’ve agreed to their inclusion.