Hi, As stated above, Im a YouTube partner who knows a lot about YouTube and how things work. I make a reasonable income from this website (about 50K a year). I can teach you guys some tricks to make more if you're already a partner. Mainly, I wanted to do this AMA because of all the talk about YouTube pulling tons of views from the media companies and I saw some misconceptions. Also, because Im not allowed to discuss my salary, I made a throwaway.

Will PM proof to the mods (income etc) if you guys want.

Edit: Wow 101 upvotes, Im back. Answering now

Comments: 233 • Responses: 38  • Date: 

Britom52 karma


YouTubeAMA20 karma

LOL! Its pretty funny. Yeah there is some truth but YouTube doesn't make you follow those rules. It was more of a comedy than informational. The stuff he talked about was correct although he did make YouTube seem like it was all about profits which I dont think is 100% true because they do pay a fair amount (over 60% is yours). You have to keep in mind that YouTube (which is owned by Google) has to pay for servers, storage, and developers to help keep the site running.

Firerouge38 karma

How much are some of the larger youtube channels like sxephil or sourcefed probably making?

YouTubeAMA45 karma

In the millions. First off, they are in a different adsense program than normal partners because they have such a large audience and their content quality is much better than the average youtuber. Google more info about "adsense premium publisher program" That is extremely hard to get accepted into though.

Brianistheman034 karma

Phil said in one of his recent videos the he pays himself +/- $75k a year.

YouTubeAMA14 karma

Yeah he probably formed a corporation. It helps when it comes time to pay taxes

bobdle20 karma

Has your proof been confirmed by any mods?

YouTubeAMA10 karma

How Can I send proof?

doovd15 karma


YouTubeAMA22 karma

You can monetize your videos instantly now but you won't make much money unless you have lots of viewers. There are many categories such as education and technology as well as gaming which are really popular and quite easy to get noticed in. Gaming is a harder of the three since there's thousands of videos about Call of Duty but not so many videos of linear algebra. Also, there's no shortcut but comment on other videos and leave video responses. That's how I got noticed. My channel gets about 15K-20K views a day now! I hope to see it grow more in the future. Also, if you do get accepted make sure to try and improve your content quality. 100k views of garbage quality is going to receive a low CPC leading to lower revenue which could be the same as 10K views on a high quality video.

ohyeahclearly12 karma

Hi! Thanks for doing this AMA!

I'm hoping to do my own show, but I've never put together anything like this before. I feel like I have the equipment ready: a reasonably priced mic and some "obtained" recording software; but ultimately I have no clue what I'm up against. I'm hoping that you can shed some light on what to expect when you've never done this before. Thankfully I have an idea of how I want things to look (intro, content of the show, and outro) but I'm very interested in how a YouTube'r gets started? I'm not really concerned with being a partner yet, as you already stated that-that can take some time.

  1. What happens when I try to use music as part of my intro/outro?
  2. How can I incorporate clips of other YouTube channels or video fragments? You mentioned video games earlier and Machinima, how are people who use game videos and not partnered in such a way, get away with using clips of themselves playing games? or LPs?
  3. What should I expect month-to-month, if I want to be successful? (I plan on doing a single 10min show, possibly expanding to a bi-weekly show).
  4. How much self-promotion do you do?

Sorry if these questions are too general, but I guess some good pointers for beginners would be awesome!

YouTubeAMA16 karma

  1. If you use copyrighted music, the YouTube Content ID system will automatically give credit to the song owners company and theyw ill get paid for the video...not you.
  2. You can make video game play on most videos BUT do not monetize unless you are partnered under a network.
  3. Sometimes it gets tough when you don't see many views rolling in yet other YouTubers are pulling in hundreds of thousands in a day like its nothing. You will get some really jealous/weird people who subscribe to you only to dislike your videos but you will get lots of nice comments as well....Dont do this for the money...do it as a hobby. Also, DO NOT disable comments or ratings-that makes the video look bad and you won't make much if you monetize it.
  4. I rarely do self-promotion now because I show up in the top searches for the category I work in.

finalbossgamers5 karma

Make sure it's not copyrighted songs you may think it's a cool song, but don't even bother if it's not yours or public domain.

YouTubeAMA6 karma


Redleno7 karma


YouTubeAMA17 karma

Try to produce content on a regular basis. Don't let your channel die out. And by regular basis I mean set a schedule. Don't let your audience guess what days you upload videos...make a schedule such as every Friday etc. Also, comment on other videos and make sure to title your video nicely because that's what is gonna get the first impression when someone is looking at "related videos". And for gaming its a another story because you need gaming licenses to monetize gaming videos so your best bet is to join a third-party network such as machinima. Machinima already pays for the licenses and they give you a rate at which you can make money off your videos and they keep the rest. It's kind of fair since they did buy the licenses and they help your channel grow.

meatloafing6 karma

I have over 3 million video views and over 8,000 subscribers, but I haven't posted a new video in about 2 years. If I were to return and try to make an income from videos, about how much am I looking at? Thanks for doing this AMA

YouTubeAMA4 karma

If you monetized all those views in the past, you would have received about $15000 if we assume its poor-average quality videos. If you got lots of "likes" and good quality (HD) then about 20K would be a good solid number. Since your channel has been dormant for so long, some of your subscribers may not use YouTube any more so its hard to predict. Upload a video and tell me how many views it gets on the first day and I can figure it out for you. Also, how many views are your current videos getting per day?

blingx6 karma

So how does one with no editting skills make videos on youtube or learn how to?

YouTubeAMA7 karma

There are many different areas where you don't need much video editing skills such as making educational videos. Or you can watch YouTube videos to learn how to use the software

NateSamsung6 karma


YouTubeAMA17 karma

It took me a about 7 months to actually reach that level. My first month I only made $20 and was pretty happy. Then it went to $200 them $800 and it eventually capped out at $2000. This was with only 3 videos receiving about 8-10K views a day. Then I made more videos and now I make about $170 a day but I keep my expectations low at 50k a year. Any extra is like a bonus to me.

numandina5 karma

What is your opinion on the recent fake views fiasco by from some of the major players of the music industry?

YouTubeAMA12 karma

Im pretty sure those weren't monetized so they are unlikely to get sued but if those fake views were shown ads, then the companies deserve/will get sued because thats millions of dollars in revenue. Also, I do feel like they should be banned from YouTube because if any normal user did that, their channel would instantly be terminated.

manskies5 karma

What kind of videos do you make?

If you accidentally publish a video that has some copyrighted music does Youtube delete just that video or all your videos and not allow you to monetize anymore?

What's the best way to earn more money on videos; by views, comments, or number of ad clicks/views?

YouTubeAMA4 karma

I make software tutorials. I don't use music but if you do, YouTube will allow it to go up but it will display the song you used in the bottom right hand corner of the video and the owner of the song will get the money from that video. Some copyright owners choose to have the material deleted immediately if their work gets uploaded. Its all based on views and clicks. Everything plays a role into getting you up there. You want to get lots of views because thats where nearly all of your income comes from BUT you also want to utilize your time and try to get the most out of those views by getting the highest amount of money for those views. Ad clicks is what you get money for but you don't want clicks that only pay you $0.06 when you can get paid $0.20 per click. It may not seem like much but trust me, the difference here can be hundreds or thousands of dollars per day, for the same amount of work.

shayan1234 karma

what specific gauidelines can you give to a starter to grow his audience base

YouTubeAMA18 karma

The number one most important guideline is to make a schedule and follow it. This is harder for some categories such as education but if you're in entertainment (comedy etc) then it's easier. You don't want your audience guessing when your next show is. Also, don't worry about subscribers too much, they will increase with good content and you don't get paid per subscriber anyways. Just cater to your current audience and your channel will grow. For example, when you make a good video, your current subscriber will like the video and probably comment. His like and comment will show up on his channel and his subscribers can see that. Also if he comments and someone clicks on his channel then they will see the activity he had with your channel and the person checking his channel may become interested with your channel.

SNES_Chalmers14 karma


notnotcitricsquid4 karma

What is the payment/pricing model and how does it work out for you? Are you paid per click or per thousand impressions?

Not the OP, but I am a Youtube partner (with Youtube, not a network). Youtube partners adverts are done through adsense and they get paid per advert.

SNES_Chalmers11 karma


notnotcitricsquid2 karma

I don't get many views (no idea why I'm even a Youtube partner, just applied a few years back and they set me up as one...) so my revenue is very small.

AFV is:

Estimated earnings from auction-sold advertising via AdSense for Video (AFV) for the date range and region selected.

My earnings aren't anywhere near what other Youtube partners get because I'm not part of a network and nobody cares for my videos.

YouTubeAMA2 karma

I am not part of a network either...You need to take a look at the Google Adwords Keyword tool and make content with keywords that have higher earnings.

YouTubeAMA3 karma

I am paid per click because I'm not under a network...Im partnered directly through Google. It fluctuates per month but you can do some SEO tricks to optimize your CPC (Cost-per-click). Right now, I made my CPC about $8-$14 per 1000 views

DiamondHeWolf4 karma

I'm going to be using my income tax returns to set up a channel on YouTube and hopefully make some money so I can quit my job. What I want to know is, is it worth it? How hard is it to actually make it into a full time job?

SausageStick7 karma

I have a YouTube partnership and it is extremely enjoyable. While it can't realy be deemed as hard, it requires lot of time, motivation and effort to craft your account to a professional standard. (however please take my opinions with a pinch of salt as I don't make a living from my account.)

YouTubeAMA2 karma

Yes...That's exactly how I'd describe it!

YouTubeAMA6 karma

Its not something you want to rely on. You can easily get banned and its all gone. Im in college so I do this for fun. Its a great way to make side income but don't rely 100% on it. It took me 7 months to get to where Im at. I guess it all depends but part of it is luck. My first video was absolute trash...I figured out how to fix something and I didn't even show how to fix the issue...I just put the instructions in the description.

sedusecret3 karma

Aren't they pretty strict about not saying how much you get paid? How is it okay that you put your salary?

My_name_is_relevant9 karma

He never mentioned his YouTube name.

YouTubeAMA9 karma


WhatTheFugue3 karma

Any tips for musicians on how to make their band's YouTube page more successful?

YouTubeAMA2 karma

Make a FaceBook and Twitter account to help promote your band so you are getting interaction with your fans outside YouTube. Music is something very hard to get successful into but try leaving comments on other videos similar to what your channel is about.

Topbong2 karma

I have a friend whose Youtube video has had about 2 million hits. How much has he missed out, by not monetizing?

YouTubeAMA2 karma

Its hard to estimate without knowing what the videos are about and the overall quality (what percentage of it was "liked" vs "disliked" by YouTubers. The lowest RPM (revenue per thousand views) I've ever seen an account have is 4K and usually people will get 6K with average quality so he missed out on about $10000. Do keep in mind that not all views are monetizable. Some people use adblock.

johnnyo242 karma

How many subscribers are needed to start making money? how much do they start off making?

YouTubeAMA2 karma

You don't need any subscribers to make views. You don't get paid for subscribers either. You start off depending on how many views you get per day when you choose to put ads on your videos. It depends on a lot of factors.

ThePantsWizard2 karma

As a new gaming channel, it's hard to find original content as every game ever has already been played a million times. How'd you suggest standing out?

YouTubeAMA7 karma

Do something original or funny with a video game that no one has done or not many people have done. You don't have to be the first person to make COD videos. Even if you're late to the game, make some videos for a certain game just so you can get some views and appear in the YouTube search function. Also, try and find glitches that haven't been fixed..I know this is hard but its where you can get serious views LOL..Its rare but possible.

numandina1 karma

What are some of the tricks for making more money if you manage to become a partner (other than making up fake views)?

YouTubeAMA6 karma

If you bot views, you will get caught. Tricks to make more money are improve the keywords you use by using the Google Adwords Keyword tool...This will show you which keywords to use for the highest pay so you get the most money for less views.

rubyapples1 karma

So are you saying if someone.stumbles upon your video with a 'good' keyword, youll make more money than if someone found it via a less popular keyword?

CBJamo4 karma

No, a good keyword will bring more people to your video.

YouTubeAMA5 karma

That and the keywords you chose affect the ads that show up

ActionAxson1 karma

Is there a place that you can find out how many partners are in each category?

YouTubeAMA1 karma

Not that I know of. I only know that SocialBlade tells you how much each partner approximately makes.

meatloafing1 karma

If I upload a video that contains a clip from an old movie, and I use a song from the soundtrack, but don't use ads on that particular video, can I still lose my partnership?

YouTubeAMA1 karma

It all depends on the copyright owner and what they told Google to do. If its an old movie, chances are that it wont be in the ContentID system, however, they can sue you for uploading it without their permission. The whole law about this issue is a mess :( Some people cite "fair use" etc but no one truly knows.

goo3211 karma

what should i watch. I have free time.

YouTubeAMA2 karma

EpicMealTime, Blendtec, OwnagePranks, etc Depends on what you like.

MoeTheFro1 karma


YouTubeAMA4 karma

I make software tutorials. Start monetizing when you get about 1000 views per day so you get a check every month; otherwise you don't get paid till you hit $100. Try to get more "likes" on your video...that helps make your CPC higher. Also, DO NOT place those video ads that aren't skippable. They just make your subscribers mad and they don't pay well either. Trust me.

MoeTheFro1 karma


YouTubeAMA2 karma

I cant, I'll get in trouble because I said how much I make. Sorry

Valonqarys1 karma


Eyeshield1456 karma

Let me guess minecraft videos? If so there isnt a chance in hell that you can do it alone.

YouTubeAMA1 karma

Yeah, if you're talking thousands of views, it will take a while and it does help to have other channels that will promote you.

Taniwha_NZ4 karma

I don't know anything about you, but I can tell you one thing: The most popular YouTube gaming channel ever hasn't even got started yet.

Think about it. You are suggesting that the current top gaming channels are there forever, nobody is going to come up and overtake them, that sort of thing never happens.

Wtf? That sort of thing happens constantly. In all the entertainment and popularity-centered industries, half the most popular figures at any point are unknown 24 months later.

If you start a youtube gaming channel and it fails, it won't be because the niche is full.

YouTubeAMA1 karma

Its possible but very difficult. Think about it this way....how many people are going to be able to become better than RWJ or Smosh in terms of popularity? Its been this way for a few years and so far, its been consistent.

lceSin2 karma

If you produce content that is better than the majority and that many people will like then you will reach success.

Reddit, forums etc are very good for promoting your content (if it's actually good content)

YouTubeAMA1 karma

Exactly this!

YouTubeAMA1 karma

Yes! You can start at any time. Comment on other videos and leave interesting comments. You know the channels that get top comments...How many times have you actually visited their channel? That's part of getting noticed.

Fithboy1 karma

I know I'm a little late to the party, but are you the Irish guy who does the PC issue solving videos? Anyway, I have made a small amount from LEGO stop motion videos, but my money has dried up since I havent uploaded anything major recently.

YouTubeAMA1 karma

Yeah you have to keep up with uploading otherwise your subscribers wont watch your videos anymore and no, im not the Irish guy.

labelgirl1 karma

Your post is PERFECT timing with issues that I am having getting two accounts up and running on adsense. I work for an indie record label...we have several accounts that we need to get synced up to adsense for monetization. Acct. #1 Artist Account: was set up with adsense but with a google account we don't use anymore. So when I try to get it set up with the proper email it won't let me unless I delete the current google account it is set up with now. Problem 2 is we have an adsense number on that artist acct. but it does not offer us the monetization choice in video manager. Acct. #2 Misc. Account: This account is not in perfect standing due to a past employee that posted copyrighted material. Is there a way to get this account set up with adsense if not in great standing or do we have to wait the 6 months for the account to clear and be in good standing?

I have had a time trying to figure all this out.

Thank you for your time and assistance.

YouTubeAMA2 karma

Wait it out because accounts with these strikes generally get lower CPCs and RPMs and have a higher chance of getting banned if the content ID system mistakenly identifies a song as someon else's. Also, as we both know, its near-impossible to ask Google for help.

labelgirl1 karma

Thank you. And I totally know how that getting help or rather lack there of help from Google goes!

YouTubeAMA1 karma

No prob and yeah, hopefully they change that soon.

spiederman-2 karma

Are you gonna anwser any more then 5 questions?

YouTubeAMA6 karma

Sorry, I made this AMA at 4 AM!