Hello, and welcome to this episode. How many YouTube subscribers do you really need in order to make decent money from the platform? This is probably one of the most popular questions I get from viewers, students and clients. Think of this episode as an easy, honest guide with the basics you need to know.
Episode 22: How many YouTube subscribers do you really need? Here’s the truth – Podcast Transcript
How many YouTube subscribers do you really need in order to make decent money from the platform? This is probably one of the most popular questions I get from viewers, students and clients. Think of this episode as an easy, honest guide with the basics you need to know. I’ll talk about subscribers and the numbers you need, the quickest way to grow your channel plus my fave tools for growing your channel.
I’m Sara Nguyen, Creator of the Thriving Creator Academy. And I’m here to help you go from being stuck and overwhelmed to becoming a confident, profitable and thriving creator.
Join me here each week for honest conversations about what it really takes to be a successful YouTube Creator without compromising your creativity, sacrificing cheeky drinks with people you love or down time for yourself.
You’ll hear about the hard lessons I’ve gone through, so you an avoid making the same slow and costly mistakes on your journey.
As well as my secret weapons to help you dig deep and do the work it takes.
I’m honoured and grateful to have the opportunity to share this together with you, right here on the Thriving Creator Podcast. I’m glad you’re here. Let’s get started.
How many subscribers do you need to start making money on YouTube?
If I had a dollar for every time someone asked me this…(laugh).
The answer to this question really depends on HOW you want to make money from YouTube.
If you’re looking to make money from YouTube Adsense via the YouTube Partner program – which is one of the most popular methods, and popular in the sense that everyone wants a piece of that pie…the answer is black and white.
In order to generate money from the program, you’ll need at least 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 watch hours in a year to qualify for the program.
What this means is you need to gain 4,000 viewing hours in 12 consecutive months. Your videos need to have been watched in the previous 52 weeks for the watch hours to count. There’s no limit to the number of videos you upload and they also don’t have to be published within the last 12 months.
You can apply to join the YouTube Partner Program once you’ve reached these numbers.
The problem with the YouTube Partner program is that just because you have 1000 subscribers and qualify, it doesn’t mean you can make a livable income every month.
The money you can earn once you’ve joined the program really depends on the niche that you’re in and what advertisers are willing to pay for ads on your YouTube videos. The amount is referred to as CPM or Cost per thousand.
For example, niches such as finance and business are known to have high CPMs. I’ve seen Creators earning $20-50 CPM in this space because of the demand from advertisers to reach audiences in this category.
I’ve also seen Creators in fitness, health and beauty with CPMs around $2 per thousand.
So how many views each month do you need to make a liveable income?
The answer is – A LOT!
I always advocate that making money from the YouTube Partner Program is a nice to have, but it shouldn’t be your only focus because it’s so unpredictable and out of your control. CMPs fluctuate and just because you have lots of subscribers, it doesn’t equal making lots of money from YouTube especially if you’re just starting out and new to YouTube.
The views on a channel if you look at your YouTube analytics will predominantly come from YouTube search. Which means the majority of viewers seeing your content won’t be your subscribers.
So think about it…how important is that subscriber number then? Spoiler alert…It’s not.
Another way to make money from YouTube which relies less on subscriber numbers and this is what I teach and coach my students to do, is to offer your own products. This could be anything from consulting services to coaching, to online courses.
By offering products that help solve your audience’s pain points, you can make money from YouTube without feeling icky, because there’s a transaction of value. The right audience will be willing and ready to pay someone – and why not You?… to ease their suffering and speed up their progress toward their desired goals.
So as you grow your audience and reach more people on YouTube, why not have a product to offer them?
Creating products and selling them is a great way of earning an income from your YouTube channel.
And you can offer your products regardless of how many subscribers you have, as long as you’re creating relevant videos…you have a way of reaching people and converting them to buy.
I started offering social media services when I had less than 500 subscribers. And my packages started at $2500 minimum, and I was making sales.
People found me from my videos because I was making content that was relevant and YouTube-optimized. Then they wanted to work with me because they had seen a bit of what I could offer from my videos. It wasn’t about the number of subscribers at that time.
So don’t think that you need 100 000 or 1 million subscribers in order to start leveraging YouTube to earn an income. The reality is that subscribers don’t matter if you create your own products and create high-value content that solves your audience’s needs and is YouTube friendly so I can rank in search.
What’s the quickest way to grow your channel?
The big secret to YouTube success and growth is really not a secret at all: it’s simply a matter of consistently creating and publishing high-quality content that is designed for YouTube.
It’s not about having a 4K camera, or the most expensive microphone or audio interface, or the fanciest animations and transitions on your video.
These can give your videos a little boost but at the end of the day, it’s the quality of your content that will really determine whether or not your channel grows.
Focus on creating videos that are informative, engaging, and above all else, made for YouTube. With a little hard work and dedication, you’ll be on your way to YouTube growth in no time.
There are many different tools and tactics you can use to grow your YouTube channel.
In this episode, I’ve talked a lot about making sure your content is “YouTube optimized and YouTube friendly”.
There are many components to this but what I want you to focus on as a content creator, is creating data-driven content.
This means creating videos on topics your audience are actually searching for. Doing keyword research to figure out what terms and phrases people are using when they search for content is what I recommend you do anytime you have a video idea. Before you create the video, not after.
Tools that I personally use include VidIQ and Kewywords Everywhere.
They’re easy to use and they’ll both tell you how many searches a keyword or topic will get, as well as related keywords you can use.
By focusing on creating data-driven content and using YouTube keyword tools you can be sure that you’re always giving your audience exactly what they’re looking for. And this is what gets you more views and subscribers.
When it comes to YouTube, it’s very easy to get caught up in the number of subscribers, the number of views your video gets.
While it’s important to set goals and track your progress, it’s also important not to get too fixated on collecting subscribers. Because you don’t need a large following on YouTube in order to make a livable income from YouTube. But you do need to focus on producing quality content and creating products that you can offer your audience.
As long as you’re doing that, your subscriber count will take care of itself and your audience will thank you for it.
This episode is over but it doesn’t have to end.
Head on to Thrivingcreatormasterclass.com if you’re ready to go from confusion to clarity and confidence and finally ditch that self-doubt so you can build the thriving YouTube channel you know deep down you were always meant to create, then Join me inside my signature Program – the Thriving Creator Academy where you’ll get the content, coaching and community you need to successfully implement my proprietary system so you can start reaping the rewards of running a thriving YouTube Channel.
The Thriving Creator Academy is a coaching program for creators who are ready transform their creative ideas into thriving YouTube channels. Sign up to the masterclass now to learn more at Thrivingcreatormasterclass.com.