How to Monetise Your Online Video

So you want to use video to start making either you, or your business some more money?

Well, it’s not as simple as it might seem. Before you even begin to create videos you’ll need to decide on what method your videos are going to use to make that money. This will affect the type of videos you create.

In this post I’ll take you through some of the most common ways you can monetise your videos.


The first one is the most obvious, and the most common, mainly due to the popularity of using YouTube for videos.

There are other ways of putting adverts in or before your videos other than YouTube’s standard adSense ads. But for the purposes of this article I’m just going to talk about the standard YouTube ads as the others are pretty similar.

Enabling advertising on YouTube is really simple. First you have to be part of YouTube’s partner program.

This will give you quite a few benefits and the only requirement is that you have an account which hasn’t violated any of YouTube’s terms of service or copyright etc.

After this it is just a case of enabling monetisation.


Youtube monetisation


There are some criteria to which videos you can advertise on. The main points being that the video is advertiser-friendly, and that you own the rights to anything that appears in the video (this includes any background music etc).

The disadvantages of using adverts as your method of monetising your video is the per-view revenue is very small.

You need a large amount of subscribers, or very popular videos to make advertising provide any real income, this likely means you’ll need to do extra marketing to draw in viewers.

Unless you’re willing to go a long time making little to no money while you increase your subscriber count then YouTube advertising is likely just going to be a little bit of cash on the side rather than an actual income.

Sponsored Content

Similar to the standard YouTube ads is sponsored content. This is when a company will pay you money to talk about / review / mention their product.



This can be a lot more profitable than advertising as it is more valuable to the company, so they are willing to pay more for it.

The downsides to sponsored content are that you have to declare it to YouTube, which might make them remove any other ads you have on the video, and depending on where you are located, you might be legally required to declare that it’s a sponsored message to the viewers.

Also, before you can even get a sponsor you will need to have a large enough audience base to attract them, so prepare for months/years of no income before you can get a sponsor.

Paid-for Content

This is either charging users for each video they want to watch, or charging a recurring fee for a subscription to watch a set of videos.

Neither of these are normally done on Youtube but both can be done if you enable paid content. This only available if you meet certain requirements, one of them being that you have over 1000 active subscribers.

The more common ways of doing paid-for videos is to put them behind a paywall on your site, you can set this up yourself or use a service to do it for you.

Promoting Videos on Other Sites

This essentially means creating videos to advertise something else that you charge people for.

This can be in the form of creating an explainer video like this example below from Airbnb.



Or having a channel filled with great videos like GoPro does for example the one below.


The point of these videos isn’t to bring in money directly, but to drive potential customers to another income source.

Another way to use video as a promotional tool is through the use of freemium content. This is a very popular method of earning money with apps and video games but underused when it comes to video content.

With freemium videos you promote your free videos until you gain an audience and in your free videos you promote your extended / uncut / special feature content that is only available somewhere else at a price.


It’s always important to consider your final objectives for a video before you start creating them.

Hopefully, this has given you an idea of ways you can get video to work for what you want to achieve.


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