Special Reports

Cashing in on YouTube

Monday, February 06, 2012

Regular people are making extra money or even making an entire living using YouTube.

YouTube gets 4-billion views a day and you can find eyeballs for just about any kind of video whether you are crocheting, cooking, teaching math or just being funny or cute. And the best part is that you can cash in on your videos.

Little Will Gregg became an instant YouTube sensation when his mother took cell phone video of him at the Phillies parade in 2008. 1.2-million people have watched it. Will's parents now use the video to build their son's college fund.

The Greggs get money from YouTube for allowing ads to run on the video. They also get money from outlets like MTV and the Game Show Network for rights to use the video and those can top out at $250 to $500 a pop!

But that's peanuts compared to another local dental student Rob Homayoon's earnings which comes to six figures a year from his YouTube videos.

"My best month, I made over $12,000," he said.

All that money for videos of Rob teaching origami!

"It definitely has surprised me," Rob admitted.

But no one is more surprised by his ability to cash in on YouTube than practical jokester Ed Bassmaster of Northeast Philadelphia.

"We were totally goofing off at work one day and just acting like an idiot like I normally do and we put it on YouTube. Then we did another, then another," explained Ed.

Now Ed has more than half a million subscribers and 214-million views!

But perhaps you'll be most envious to know that this is all he does.

Ed has quit his traditional job and supports three kids just by posting one video a week on YouTube which takes four hours or less!

"It's mostly hidden camera pranks. We go out in public and mess with people and try to get their reactions," he said.

And Ed has been able to leverage his YouTube fame into other opportunities.

Companies hire him for commercials and appearances.

"They'll spend anywhere from $4,000 to $20,000 for me to come out," Ed said.

So how can you cash in on YouTube? First, figure out what you're good at, then upload original content that's 100% yours.

And if you're doing an instructional video, Rob says, "You definitely want to have a good angle so people can see clearly see what you're doing and you want to speak as clearly as possible."

Also make sure to interact with your viewers on YouTube's comment section and elsewhere.

"I answer emails every day. I interact on Facebook, I interact with a lot of people on Facebook," said Ed.

He also recommends getting in touch with others.

"A good way to grow is to reach out to other YouTubers and ask to collab with them or ask them to spread the word of your videos," said Ed.

And post to the site regularly.

"Don't make one video a week and then take off for two months because people will tend to lose interest in you," advised Ed.

Once you've built up a little following sign up to be a YouTube partner that way you can run ads across your video and get paid for it. The more views you get, the higher the check you get from YouTube each month.

Also make sure your contact information is on your YouTube page sometimes companies and brands will contact popular YouTubers offering to pay them to embed products in their videos.

And finally a lot of people find videos by searching so make sure you use good keywords and titles for your videos.

MORE: Tips to help your YouTube channel succeed

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