Confused about how to monetize your videos?
Don’t worry; you’re not alone.
Knowing how to turn your creations into cash can be pretty hard to figure out. It feels like the only option is to upload a video to YouTube and do, well…whatever YouTubers do to make money.
But you’ll be glad to know YouTube isn’t the only video monetization option.
There are lots of ways to do it, and most of them are more profitable, enjoyable, and consistent.
They put you in control of your video business and allow you to make the money you deserve.
What are they?
You’re about to find out.
In this article, I want to show you what video monetization is, the three methods you can choose from and give you an actionable strategy to turn your videos into profit.
Use the table of contents below to navigate through this post:
- What is Video Monetization (And How Do You Create One?)?
- How to Monetize Videos: 3 Profitable Ways To Sell Videos Online
- Why YouTube Isn’t Always The Best Choice
- How to Monetize Videos Online in 3 Steps
Video monetization is the process of generating income through the videos you share online on any platform. This is usually achieved through advertising, subscriptions, or direct transactions.
In simpler terms…
Video monetization is basically getting paid for the videos you create.
People watch, like or subscribe and you get paid a sum of money for it. The more people who watch (or, the more subscribers you have), the more you earn.
Now, when monetizing your videos online, you won’t get paid for the video creation process. Meaning, nobody is likely to pay you to go out with your camera and record. Instead, you’ll get paid for access.
This can be:
- Access to your videos
- Access to your audience
- Access to your platform
Meaning people will pay you to watch your videos or to transmit a message to your audience. Let’s look at some day-to-day examples of this you might be familiar with:
- Access to videos: Paying to go to the cinema to “access” the latest blockbuster hit
- Access to audience: The adverts between TV shows which “access” your attention
- Access to platform: Your monthly Netflix subscription to “access” their video library
You’ll notice you don’t directly pay for the director to go out and create the next series of Luke Cage. But, you’re happy to pay for the opportunity to watch it.
Which brings me squarely to your videos.
To monetize your content you’re going to need to take advantage of access. Which, luckily for you and me, is really easy to do in today’s on-demand video world.
You have three content monetization options to choose from. All of which center around an idea called Video on Demand (VOD).
VOD means the user can access a video anywhere at any time. No checking the TV guide or waiting for a show to broadcast. It’s there at the push of a button.
If you’re interested you can learn more about VOD in our breakdown of it here. But all you need to know for now is that it’s profitable.
However, the method you choose will dictate just how profitable.
AVOD: Advertising Video On Demand
AVOD is where advertisers pay to put their adverts in front of your audience. It’s the classic method YouTube is built around.
When you watch a YouTube video you’ll often be presented with an advert at the start or somewhere within the content. Like this infernal advert from Consulting.com which I’ve seen so often it shows up in my nightmares:
The more people who see or interact with the adverts on your videos the more profitable they are. Meaning those with larger follower bases have the potential to earn lots of money.
AVOD doesn’t require a lot of up-front effort to set up and may seem like the path of least resistance. But don’t jump over and try it out just yet. As you’ll see in the next section, it’s not even close to being the best content optimization platform.
SVOD: Subscription Video On Demand
SVOD works by users paying a recurring subscription fee to access your videos.
You’ll be familiar with this if you have a Netflix subscription. You pay monthly to watch videos from their library and when you stop paying, you lose access.
This is the most profitable method of making money with your videos. In fact, Uscreen users who run this sort of business make an average of $3,800 per month.
TVOD: Transactional Video On Demand
Here people pay for this amount of content they watch. It’s often split up on a per-video or per-series basis.
If you’ve ever downloaded a video from iTunes or Play Store, you’ll have experienced TVOD. You can create accounts and access the platform for free (or cheaply) and then pay only for the videos you decide to watch.
This is another highly profitable system for the right market. Especially if you’re selling videos covering lots of different topics and industries, and you’re not focused on a specific.
Okay, they’re the three methods. But what is it that makes the YouTube route less-than-stellar for video creators?
There’s no doubting YouTube is a giant of the video industry. They’ve arguably helped shift and shape the role of video in both of our lives, forever.
But it’s a hard place to monetize your videos. Why?
Because YouTube is highly competitive. Everyone who has ever wanted to be internet famous or run a video business is trying their luck there. So, there’s a lot of noise.
This is why 96.5% of YouTubers don’t make enough money to break the poverty line. It’s like trying to get into the NFL or Olympics; only a select few make it.
Even if you do break through you’re not in control of your income. It’s dictated by:
- Advertiser guidelines
- Viewer statistics
- YouTube’s ever-changing profit limits
Meaning advertisers and YouTube have the power to refuse to sponsor your videos and potentially remove entire income streams overnight.
At Uscreen we believe in empowering video creators to make the money they deserve for the art they create.
Sadly, that’s not going to happen on YouTube. Which brings us to an important question.
How can you create a video business where you’re in the driver’s seat?
Let me show you…
At the start of this article, I promised to give you an actionable, YouTube-free video monetization strategy to make money from your videos. And, I want to make good on that promise.
Regardless of where you are in the process right now; whether you’ve just got a few videos to play with, or an entire library waiting to be monetized, the strategy stays the same.
If you follow the next three steps you’ll be able to successfully and profitably sell your videos online.
Create Your Own Online VOD Platform
The first step is to create your standalone space.
This is your reserved spot on the internet where people can come to find your videos and access them. Ideally, this is going to be a video-on-demand optimized website where people can easily get to your content on any device.
Having this space will allow you to:
- Set your prices
- Keep creative control of your videos
- Stay flexible and adjust your strategy based on your audience’s needs
Basically, you have free reign over your domain. (URL-based pun was totally intended.)
You can either create this yourself by putting together a range of different apps on a WordPress website, for which we’ve got an entire guide right here.
Or you can use Uscreen’s all-in-one platform. You can create your video monetization site, upload your videos, set your prices and manage your marketing from one easy-to-use dashboard, tailor-made for video creators like yourself.
You can find out more about our video monetization services here.
Create A Subscription Offer
This model works well because of its scalability.
You can generate limitless income for the videos you’ve already created, and you don’t need to create something new to increase your income. You’re always just adding to your library and growing the value for the viewer.
Another benefit is this income is passive and monthly. You don’t need to be there at the point of sale, and when you do make a sale, you generate income over the long term. The more subscribers you have, the more this snowballs. But even with just a few people on board, you can generate a lot of income!
Finally, you’re in full control of your prices.
You can keep them low and accessible if that’s where your confidence level is, or you can charge a high-ticket offer if you feel up to it. However, most subscriptions sit between $9.99 and $19.99 per month.
All of this leaves you to do more of what you love – creating.
Get On Television!
Once you’ve developed your offer and converted a few people you can upgrade your offer to include television. How?
By using OTT apps.
These streaming apps allow your audience to view your videos on their television. Thanks to devices like Roku and Amazon Fire Sticks, you’re able to generate even more income from them.
You can take our quick test to see if your business is ready for OTT apps right here.
Want to learn all of this in more detail? Check out Uscreen’s brand new Video Business School! It will guide you through the whole process of launching an online video business of any kind from start to finish.
Wrapping This Up…
Video monetization is the act of getting paid for the videos you create. And, its reach extends well beyond YouTube.
The most effective way to do this is by creating an SVOD service. These subscription videos allow you to control and increase your income in your way and develop a strong community around your videos.
So where do you go from here? Well, it depends on how you feel:
- If you’re still unsure and need to think about it, you can browse our current customers to see how their video websites look and try to envision yourself and your video content in their shoes.
- If you’re set on the idea but don’t think you can do it, check out the Uscreen Video Business School. It covers everything from A to Z about launching and running a successful video business and will guide you through the process step by step.
- If you’re super sold on the idea and want to get started yesterday, you can sign up for a 14-day trial of Uscreen’s platform.
- If you have any specific questions that were not answered in this blog post, just give us a shout. We’re always happy to help.
But before you go, would you mind telling me why you wanted to monetize your videos in the first place? Let me know in the comments!