More and more companies are starting to ramp up their YouTube efforts and create video content that will help viewers stay on the page. But there is a direct way to monetize your videos — join the YouTube Partner Program.
This option has been around for a while. It is an excellent way to get involved with advertisements, paid subscriptions and merchandise to help you make sure your YouTube efforts are profitable, and you’re constantly growing your channels and your audience.
A few more benefits include:
- You can reach a global audience with your monetized content because YouTube is the largest online video community in the world.
- You can “gain flexibility through a non-exclusive agreement.” What this means is YouTube allows partners to upload and distribute their content (or your content on YouTube) elsewhere on the web.
- You can track and manage your performance through YouTube Analytics.
- You get unlimited uploads, external annotations, custom thumbnails, content ID appeals, and unlisted and private videos, which non-partners do not have.
Adam Heitzman, managing partner of SEO Company HigherVisibility, said it best:
“Getting started with this program takes some effort, but it’s important for companies who thrive on video marketing and whose audience responds well to videos. YouTube is technically the second largest search engine in the world, so the sooner you can get started monetizing in any way you can, the better.”
First step: Determine if you are eligible for the program
Before you can even think about joining the program your YouTube channel has to be eligible. Below are some of the criteria that YouTube discussed on their support page that you have to meet in order to be eligible for the program:
- The program has launched in your country. If the program is not available in your country, you will see a notification in your monetization settings.
- Your account is in good standing and hasn't previously been disabled for monetization.
- You upload original, quality content that is advertiser-friendly.
- You have reviewed their copyright education materials.
- Your video content complies with their Terms of Service and Community Guidelines, which you can find on the support page.
It’s also worth mentioning that you cannot join the program and monetize videos with music, graphics, live performances or any video game/TV visuals unless you have permission from the person who actually created and produced all of the material.
How to get started with the YouTube Partner Program
How to get started with the Partner Program in three easy steps:
First, and in order to check and see if you meet all of these guidelines and get started, you need to visit the Monetization tab in your account settings. If it says you are in good standings, then you can simply click Enable My Account and you’re set. Below is a screenshot of what you will see when you click that link:
Your next step is to simply select the video you want to monetize. Then, go to the Actions dropdown menu and click Monetize. Below is a screenshot of how to make it happen:
Finally, once you do this you will be prompted to check off the types of ad formats you want to accept. Then, confirm that you want to monetize, as shown in the screenshot below:
Once your video is submitted and approved for monetization, YouTube will place ads inside or near the video. However, you have to connect an AdSense account to your YouTube account in order to start earning that revenue. If you are unsure how to connect the two, visit this YouTube help page for instructions.
You can manage all of your videos and opt them into monetization from your Video Manager. This is also where you can opt out of the program if you no longer want your videos to be monetized.
Is the program ever a bad idea for companies?
As discussed above, you have to have explicit rights to everything you are using in your videos, including music and graphics. For most companies this isn’t a problem, but some companies (and more so individuals) may want to opt out.
Some people also simply don’t want to display ads against their videos, so they choose to opt out. However, you can still choose to enable this feature simply for the extra perks discussed above. You get to choose video-by-video whether or not you want advertising displayed, so if you want to choose none, that’s your call.
Have you had success with the YouTube Partner Program? Let us know your experiences and thoughts in the comment section below.
Amanda DiSilvestro gives small business and entrepreneurs SEO advice ranging from keyword density to recovering from Panda and Penguin updates. She writes for the nationally recognized SEO firm HigherVisibility.com that offers online marketing services to a wide range of companies across the country. Her last article for SEMrush was, "Consumer Marketing Tips for Franchise Locations."