T O P

OK let's be real right now. How many youtubers actually live off the YouTube salary? Can't find statistics for this shit

OK let's be real right now. How many youtubers actually live off the YouTube salary? Can't find statistics for this shit

J_Kenji_Lopez-Alt

I don’t make all my income from YouTube videos but it was one of my main revenue streams last year. I make cooking videos and only use skip-able adshare ads (no non-skip-able ads, and no pre-roll) and generate around $7-10 CPM (that’s dollars per thousand impressions). I don’t know what the CPM rate is for other types of videos but I know it depends on content type and sometimes on specific creator. I also don’t do any sponsorships or partnerships, but from talking with other food youtubers, I know that sponsorships generate about twice as much revenue as Adsense (rates depend on your average views and what you are willing to do as a promotion). Some youtubers also use Patreon (I don’t) which can generate more money than ad sales as well. If you have a channel that updates weekly and gets in the 3-500k per videos range, you can make a very comfortable living (at least $12-20k/month assuming a $10 CPM) with just Adsense. Much more if you’re willing to do sponsorships or ask for support on Patreon. Edit: I should add that my career started way before I did anything on YouTube, so I had a leg up in gaining an audience and subscribers there. I also produce my videos extremely cheaply. My only expenses are my time and a couple of $500 gopro cameras. (I actually save some money because when I cook a meal for a video, I can write it off as a business expense on my taxes!) I could probably make more doing Patreon but for now I enjoy doing this and I don’t do it for the money, so whatever is the least-stress, fewest-responsibilities approach is what wins out for me. My income from YouTube is also highly variable. Some months it’s double other months. This seems to be evening out a little over time as a larger percentage of income gets earned by back catalogue videos compared to relying on new videos, but it’s still not what I’d call a regular, reliable income at all. Second edit: average watch time is also a very important metric. Videos that people watch for the 7-10m range earn much more than videos people watch for only a couple minutes.


p3dantic

There was an article you did about a decade ago on how different times for boiled eggs changed their insides. It was instrumental in recalibrating how I approached cooking. It made me think of recipes as how I had to change food from one state to another with the help of heat/seasoning/etc instead of just a series of steps to follow without knowing why. Thank you for that!


karlnite

You deserve it to bud. I thought I wouldn’t have a horse in this race and then realized there are YouTubers I support lol.


thecatlyfechoseme

I love your videos, they have been instrumental to improving my cooking. Your videos even got my spouse to start cooking more as well. Thank you!


ciociosan22

Love you Kenji - when you started doing longer form vids last year you really made our lockdown so much easier. Every time you upload a new vid me or my wife yell out - “THERE’S A FRESH KENJ!” (Yes, we’ve shortened your name)


J_Kenji_Lopez-Alt

Many friends cal me that.


ciociosan22

Ha, awesome. Well, consider us friends from Australia you’ve never met. I’m also a huge Beatles nerd and I love that you seem to be too.


BeingRightAmbassador

CPM is the big one. I saw some girl who did a video and the CPM for that videos demo was like $25 instead of her normal 5ish because it was shared around by female execs.


PM_Your_GPU_Sales

Teaching Babish to cook one recipe at a time!


wheresmypants86

Big fan of your videos, and I absolutely love your dogs.


theregos

Love your videos! :)


OutWithTheNew

>generate around $7-10 CPM I'm pretty sure that much like you're cooking, that is completely insane. In the good way. One content creator I follow that does something different passed 100k subscribers last year and made something like $25k from AdSense and about as much by selling merch.


ODBCP

To all the people seeing this (because it’s currently at the top of this thread) that don’t know about this guy, just get your life together and go watch some videos. This is a hugely respected pro chef doing totally unpretentious home cooking videos with a go pro, explaining every step (and often the science behind it). There is no weird editing or clickbait, no sponsorship bullshit, and most of the other YouTube chefs are stealing this dude’s stuff anyway. It is a blessing to home cooks everywhere. If you are also a guitar player for some weird reason, Tom Bukovac’s “homeskoolin” is the guitar equivalent of this.


KILLJEFFREY

Zac and Jay provide extreme transparency. Watch their video and extrapolate to those that fit. Average ~800,000 views/video with 700,000 subscribers. Make about £80,000/year each.


AerotheIceman

That does heavily depend on what category of content they produce though.


darkmars

and video length, on a recent Gus and Eddy podcast Gus says he made less than $100 on a sketch video that was about a minute long, that got around 1.3 million views. This is why we don't see as many animation channels on YouTube anymore either


mael0004

I think that's very recent change, youtube suddenly giving like 5% of old ad revenue to videos that are <2m. There was popular video on some animator complaining about this couple of weeks ago.


FunMotion

It was still pennies compared to any other genre, that change just made it even worse.


ScumBreedsScum

RubberRoss did a video on it like 7 years ago. YouTube's algorithm is the reason for the surge in junk food content. See, YouTube's algorithm started heavily favoring view time and viewer retention as opposed to just views. It's why Lets Play channels blew the fuck up, because those are extremely easy to make and you can crank out an hour of content every day pretty easily. It's why reaction channels and Leafy-style "commentary" channels also saw these crazy surges, same with all those vlog channels, unboxing, etc. Quantity over quality. True story, I knew someone who managed to grind a Lets Play channel to some low-level fame simply by uploading four fucking times a day every day for months because he was unemployed. The content was terrible, but he uploaded so damn much that the algorithm started recommending his videos to people and he took off. That's not even getting into monetization. YouTube pays more for long videos to a point, but it peters off again when it gets really long. A case in point is Game Grumps. When they get animations from people, Arin insists they be at least 1min long so the animator can get actual revenue. Fun fact: Shorts aren't monetized at all. There's a cooking channel I follow who has around 60,000 subs who says he's never earned a single dollar from YouTube since all he makes are shorts.


th3m3w

I wonder if they'll ever monetize shorts. if it gets bigger some creators that only make shorts will surely want revenue and if they don't get it might consider moving to other platforms right?


ScumBreedsScum

I'm not sure how they would. Putting actual ads on sub-60sec videos would be suicide for the platform. Maybe overlays?


Wolfeh2012

If I remember right they made the change a few years back that videos under 15m are penalized. That's why so many youtubers pad out short videos to a 15 minute minimum these days.


acid_etched

I believe it's 10 minutes, but the effect is the same.


Two_Faced_Harvey

And why if you watch a lot you you notice that a lot of videos are 10 minutes


agriculturalDolemite

Some people may be too young to remember when the limit on YouTube was 10 minutes


1129514

I had forgotten about that until I watched a video of a guy opening a Black Lotus magic card and he said he was gonna have to speed things up since he only had 10 minutes. Brought in a wave of old youtube nostalgia.


penis_degloving

You unlocked a memory of child me clicking 10 videos to watch a full movie


OkStretch1

Also why Youtubers will try spread out videos into multiple 10+ minute videos.


LifeInAction

This absolute, I actually have a monetized YouTube channel and know a couple friends that do, all across different niches, if purely in ads, a typical comedy/music video gets about $2-$3 per 1k views, on the other hand, a typical video on Bitcoin can literally make about $15-$20 per 1k views. In other words a Bitcoin video that gets 100k views makes about the same amount of money as a comedy/music video with 500k views, the benefits are that comedy/music channels typically have much larger audiences, since it's easier to find the average person on the street into music and funny shareable prank videos, than videos talking about something as mature as investing. Expenses are also huge, many finance videos you can produce the content cheaply with just a camera and voice, whereas travel or tech videos, you might have to spend tons of money just to buy the actual travel experience or tech to review. Idea is that it really can vary really quite drastically.


Bibslo

That's because they can put get-rich-quick scheme ads in front of finance channels and people actually click them.


LifeInAction

Yeah I think it's largely since advertisers bid on words to display their ads, many people that sell courses charge like $1,000 for 1 course, so can spend $300-$400 on ads, and easily make it back by selling literally 1 course. Makeup channels on the other hand, attract advertisers that want to sell shampoo bottles or grooming products for about $20-$30, hence can only charge so much for it. On the flip, it's very easy for makeup or tech channels to sponsor products, since there channel can be literally built around product recommendations, hence make a massive from just advertising other people's merchandise and making commissions from them. Many finance channels, there isn't a physical product being sold, aside from many financial books, but certainly compared to makeup/tech, but the beauty is having so much of it being digital. Also hence why the creativity to monetize also varies drastically across niches.


PurpuraFebricitantem

Does the amount the content creator makes change when I click "Skip Ad" instead of watching the ad in full?


LifeInAction

That's a great question, I believe so, I think many reported when they have their audiences watch through they get paid more, but how much more and the significance that's a mystery lol.


my-other-throwaway90

I wish there was some kind of alternative way for content creators to earn money on YouTube. No way in hell I'm dealing with youtubes barrage of ads, my browser is ad blocked out the ass. And no, I'm not sitting through your paid promotion where you talk about how wonderful Skill Share is with dead eyes. No wonder Patreon had gotten so popular...


DetectivePokeyboi

Quick google search says that YouTubers earn nothing if you skip the ad, but YouTubers may still make money from your view via the banners that appear.


PurpuraFebricitantem

Thanks, DetectivePokeyboi! Indeed, I had found something similar. I figured it wouldn't hurt to ask someone with first-hand experience while they were here and all. I appreciate your input either way.


exstaticj

I watch crypto vids daily and I just get the same 3 ads for webull investing app and crypto.com ads. Over and over. No variety whatsoever. I would click on a get rich scheme at this point just to promote variety.


younghnam

$15-20 per 1K views for Bitcoin videos? I follow a couple you tubers and they release videos everyday and get 50-100K views each. That would suggest they make $250-500K. Impressive…!


SiliconeGiant

Yeah that seems high


demogrbz

I've never heard of anyone getting over $10/1k views.


Destillat

Even that is still beaucoup money


LifeInAction

Yep that's correct, it does seem absurd, but it's actually super very accurate. For example there's a YouTuber called Meet Kevin, he has in the 1 million subscribers range now, but back then around 700k to 800k subscribers, he showed his stats report that showed he was making about $3k-$4k every single day, in many cases even the weekends, in other words, around let's say $3.5k x 30 days = Around $100k per month, or essentially around $1 million per year.


Tana1234

He also posts multiple videos a day and tends to cover the meme stocks so helps gain him traction


kabobkabobkabob

>something as mature as investing Lol but most bitcoin YouTube content is trash


ChickenDickJerry

Most investing content is trash tbh


PerkyLilNuts

And then frequency of content uploads. Plus size of the backlog that often get thousands of views for a cumulative effect on revenue. Some channels are topical whereas others are timeless so long term viewership is drastically varied


TheArtofWall

Then there are also livestreamers, who can make a lot more from channel donations during the steam.


ballandabiscuit

Then they double-dip by posting their live stream to YouTube later, so they get both the income from live stream donations and ads/views/subscriptions without having to create two different pieces of content.


BicycleInteresting99

Then they cut the clips to smaller videos. Recently, they cut their clips to even smaller length. i.e. under 60 seconds for YouTube shorts (Tiktok for utube).


Swissstuff

I think shorts are more for growth than profit, I think it was The Spiffing Brit that said in one of his how to break youtube videos that you get paid near to nothing for several thousands of views on a short


Germanweirdo

Ya Gus Johnson said on a 1 minute ish video that gets 800k -1.3m views he gets between 2-9 bucks. Kinda insane.


TheRadHatter9

He said his chainsaw video, about 1.3m views and 13sec long, made $45. It's for "shorts," videos under a minute, that don't get much. Which is why you might see videos that would normally only be 40-50sec long get extended to 61sec.


redmanb

That ain't workin,thats way too do it. Money for nothin' and chicks for free


mcm0313

They want their MTV.


Realtrain

Just not YouTube TV


TimidPocketLlama

When do we ship those microwave ovens?


TheOneTonWanton

After we move these refrigerators and color TVs.


D3f4lt_player

Youtube shorts is a thing that heavily helps to promote a streamer's channel. Found a lot of streamers that way


kinglysunshine

Can you link the video where they talk about this?


KILLJEFFREY

https://youtu.be/aaZlREPZrdM @ 11:46.


KILLJEFFREY

Yeah. Give me just a sec!


MCButterFuck

It also depends on merch sales and how many ads they allow on there videos. Some YouTubers fill every slot possible. Others space the ad rolls out a bit more.


hygsi

Dude, I legit don't watch if I see a video with like 15 adds for less than 30 minutes


alyTemporalAnom

Everyone commenting that $80,000 per year is a pretty good salary, please note that that's the income from the videos, not the net profit. Channels that big generally have expenses, too. Supplies for videos, props, equipment, staff to help them make/edit the videos, and so on and so forth. That may not leave much for the creators to pay themselves with.


Green-Alien-Soup

People are also forgetting that they have to set aside a hefty chunk of their annual income for taxes too. One of my favourite YouTubers didn’t know he had to do that back when he first got big, and now owes like half a million dollars to the IRS 😬


NSA_Chatbot

> owes like half a million dollars to the IRS If you owe that much, *you made a shit-ton of money*.


Green-Alien-Soup

He did, but he didn’t budget wisely and screwed himself over


frugalmail

It’s not all just tax, penalties are steep


DubsFan30113523

That’s probably major for a lot of them, a lot of youtubers more than likely haven’t had a job before YouTube that didnt automatically deduct their pay for taxes, and don’t know how to calculate it on their own, so they just don’t think about it until the IRS comes after them


b0ggydepot

Rob Gavagan? I feel like I watched a video about his struggling as he didn't do his taxes right.


AmericanFromAsia

Sure, but this is true of every single (legal) job. If anything taxes are *less* of an issue when running a YouTube channel versus working an equal-paying office job since more of your expenses can be written off to be tax-free, so suddenly a £30,000 car's taxes are deducting from a YouTube channel-owner's taxable income and cheaper for him than a normal office worker.


coupbrick

They still screw that up though. I don't remember the vlogger's name but this dude bought 2 HOUSES because his plan was to claim them as work expenses. He was allowed to do that, however you can only claim a certain amount per year and the houses were worth way more than that. So he ended up bankrupting himself.


mynewaccount5

If only he knew you were allowed to sell houses too.


Hybernative

That sounds like Onision.


Green-Alien-Soup

Most jobs I’ve had took the taxes off each paycheque automatically though.


AmericanFromAsia

When you run a business that passes $x/yr you have to pay yourself like any company would pay a salaried employee, even as the business owner and sole employee, and at that point the salary distributions would withhold for taxes just like any other job. This is true for YouTubers (they actually talk about it in the video someone linked), indie game devs, ecomm people, and any registered business making beyond a threshold of money. If you're making decent money as an individual but nothing to justify a business (like maybe $20,000/yr, pulled out of my ass) then yeah, you can get boned on forgetting about taxes


FootyG94

That’s £80,000 and nearly triple the average salary in the uk. £80k = $113k.


Lojcs

Needs more numbers. How often do they upload? How many ads do their videos have? How often do they do sponsorships?


Awkward_Host7

Per year??


PsychGradStudent2112

You left out a very important number: how many videos they post in a year


Y34rZer0

How many videos do they put out (roughly?) per year


bigtiddynotgothbf

they uploaded roughly 20 videos in the year before that video


Y34rZer0

ok cool, so they’re not putting out insane amounts of videos then.


TripleShines

20 videos a year is quite low. Some people upload daily or more than daily and get like 30-50k views per video with significantly less subscribers.


aralk_

A lot of YouTubers built a fan base on their & create income through their fans. Merch, going on tours, streams, sponsorships. Do you know how many random YouTubers are NYT Best selling authors?? It's crazy! Unless you're Jenna Marbles, they're making money through other things.


Levitarius

Jenna stopped making videos


youvegotpride

If you know about her friends Cristine and Ben from the channel Simply Nailogical, they explained on their podcast Simply Podlogical that a lot of revenue comes from old videos that have more traction. Someone like Jenna have so many vids that are still popular that she must make good money each month even though she's not uploading right now. If you want details I advise their podcast, there is one episode on the YT money.


cut_n_paste_n_draw

That's what I was thinking too, I'm sure she is still ridiculously rich from the revenue off of her old videos. I wonder if she's set for life...


youvegotpride

My understanding about YouTubers such as Cristine, Jenna, Micarah or Safya and Tyler is that they paid their house with minimum loan after making a lot thanks to YT and puting that money aside for a while. I may be wrong but that's what I understood from the way they said they could "finally" (after years and years) afford a house thanks to YT. I'm not sure a bank would loan millions to people relying on popularity on YT. That would mean that their need for money for rent or for a loan is minimal and they could survive on less money than average people (badly said but I hope it's understandable). I may be totally wrong though!!


Reducta

Well her fiance has his own channel and streams and he does pretty well so I think they are very set for life lol


hygsi

She's still making money cause even now she has millions of people watching her content


xbubblegum_bitch

yeah where has she been ?


Simone_Bell13

She made a farewell video and essentially she is going on a haitus.


kingpantaloons

she's been gone for a while now, completely pulled off of all public socials. basically someone found an old video where she did something black-face looking and, while her intention wasn't black-face, she knew an apology wouldn't be enough. it was almost a decade after the original video. she decided to pull away as the harassment for a decade old accidental issue started rolling in. julien even ended the jenna/julien podcast, because jenna wasn't there anymore so what was the point? they did recently finally get engaged though :)


hygsi

I still believe the theory that she was tired of youtube as a whole, I used to watch every upload and her latest had been like "I didn't know what to do today" "why am I doing this?" "I hope you enjoyed this even tho x" she wasn't having fun anymore, she just felt tired, it was more evident when she took a nap for 20M subs, there weren't enough people talking about her old videos and the ones who did were facing their own backlash, this was her finally having enough of the internet imo. 10 years is a long time.


plamog

she actually brought the video up on her own, no one “found” it! she realized how problematic it was and chose to discuss it.


scatteringbones

She specifically said in her apology video that she WASN’T leaving because of the recent criticism for past racism in her old videos (racist Asian joke & blackface for a Nicki Minaj impression, which wasn’t much darker than her insane fake tan at the time lol). She left because YT had become more stressful than it was worth & being on camera constantly was making her really unhappy. IMO it makes sense that she’d want to move on after a DECADE of making weekly videos


OGwalkingman

I doubt you can find any strong real statistics on this


bennitori

This. There is a massive difference between a youtuber who uploads weekly or monthly, versus someone who uploads annually or just whenever they feel like it. And that doesn't even count all of the "youtubers" who are just accounts with one or two videos on them. Plus I'm sure a youtuber who streams vs a youtuber selling merch vs a youtuber with a patreon vs a DIY hobbyist youtuber are all going to have completely different incomes, with completely different chances of living off their earnings. And of course, there is no real way to statistically separate all of these categories.


Panama_Punk

At least for the gaming side of youtube, they typically supplement their weekly/daily videos with streaming non-edited content or actually editing the content itself on livestreaming sites. Id say if you want to get baseline stats for a typical youtuber (someone who purposely creates consistent content), then look at the people who aim for the 10-15minute minimum videos frequently. For gaming, it would be like Northernlion, Jesse Cox or Kripparrian . Twitch is an obvious supplement to their income, because why not? Its like the easiest way to make dual-streams of income; huge batch of un-edited content which can than be edited down for youtube. Other categories like cooking, TCG, niche hobby, science, or anything that requires material purchase or research, might be inconsistent just for the fact they rely on alot of prep work to gather materials or information for their content. Which can also be expensive or require length prep work to not look trash. Hopefully the the content is supported by a decent personality or solid idea. Looking at the top 1% of youtubers is gonna give very skewed numbers and the dedicated fanbase for that takes years to establish.


wannabe414

> implying enel has ever touched video editing software in his life I think just looking at revenue from YouTube, rather than overall profit, is an important metric. Yes, tech videos are going to be more expensive than gaming videos, but lowering costs is a different question than increasing revenue, and at least the second one can be more accurately measured in the aggregate


AlexanderAF

I have a 7 yo YouTube channel reviewing tech products. I have about 5,000 subscribers and 3 million views. I pull in about $100/month. It is *definitely* not my sole source of income.


FrederickWarner

The tech category is very bad when it comes to dollars per view


Dee_ListCeleb

MKBHD makes a pretty penny from being a YouTuber. I would include Lew from Unbox therapy but, I can't stand that guy


FrederickWarner

Well if you’re talking about a shit ton of subscribers then yeah. He has like what, 20 million? And yeah the inbox therapy guy is so annoying imo


quick20minadventure

He only has higher numbers because he caters to Indian audiences I think. T series tactics. Unbox therapy is very low quality content. Just open stuff and bullshit about it from the spec list. Short-circuit does that with way more helpful information. Regardless, unbox therapy is tech showcase channel, not a review channel.


AmnesicAnemic

Unbox therapy is literally an ad channel. He gets paid to showcase tech by the companies sending them the tech.


BeingRightAmbassador

MKBHD is basically a paid positive reviewer now. Can't blame him when he has employees to support, but his quality has plummeted and his bar for cool tech is low. His recent Mercedes video was mostly just luxury features that he acted like was industry changing.


T3ddyBeast

35k subs here, tech/camera gear focus . Highest peak was about $2k in one month if you include affiliate links. 1300/700 split affiliate/ad rev. It settled down to about 1k a month for the a while and I lost my mojo because of personal/career/life. Haven't posted a vid in 6 months or more, currently sitting at $132 in the last 30 days.


GamingTrend

I work in the industry and I get to chat with a lot of full-time streamers. Before you get stars in your eyes about how much money you can make, let me tell you about all the people who are tired, run down, have ulcers, can't take a vacation because their numbers and income drop, etc. etc. It's their job to be "on" all the time. Realize that it's not nearly everything the slick veneer suggests.


Phenomenal_Hoot

This is the type stuff I always think about when people bring up what a sweet gig streaming or YouTube has to be. I’m like, yeah I bet it’s all fun and games until you realize when that camera ain’t on, I’m not generating income. Which leads to working as much as possible which leads to burnout.


LawlessCoffeh

It's really tragic to watch somebody who has like, really dried out their "funny" gland and you just see the most tortured motherfucker alive out there still trying to put on a show.


Villagedrunkinjun

they should have went with the George Constanza *walk-out-while-on-fire* routine


woosterthunkit

God I feel bad that I laughed at this 😂


Summerclaw

Some of the streamers I know when they are about to take a vacation. They just pre record some videos and have a mod or something upload them in their abscense.


Koshunae

So every time you need a week long vacation you have to produce a weeks worth of overtime content before leaving. Still seems like a tough spot.


Summerclaw

Not much different than regular jobs to be honest. Just like a vacation you start saving some money every month and you could make an extra video and hold it every week while you save. Should be enough to get you through your vacation.


Bryceybryce

Ya I was going to say. Even if your employer pays for vacation days, if other teams or reports depend on you in the organization, leaving them high and dry for a week is a bad look. When I vacation it either means working a bit of overtime to make sure everyone knows what to do while I’m out or catch up when I get back on things that pile up (usually both). I could just leave and not give a shit if I’m blocking someone while I’m out but I would be annoyed if someone else did that to me so I try and not do the same.


BansheeGriffin

As the other guy said, that's just any other job that is not just shelf stacking.


Schifferenveskeren

Just like every other job? Regular 9-5ers don't make income sitting on their ass at home when the clock hits 5. Just cause they are paid just the same doesn't mean that those wasted hours were generating income. If they worked ALL day, they would be making significantly more. If one were to think that those hours were generating income, however, and that those ARE labor-hours, then shouldn't they be compensated fairly for 60-80 hour weeks, instead of 40?


optimalwitchcraft

Typically when you decide on a dream job, you're way too young to understand the real reprocussions (as you've mentioned here). You never ask yourself "If I'm doing what I love for work, what do I do to unwind after work?" Eventually video games will become a tedious task, buying makeup is a chore, listening to music becomes a reminder of the work you have to do. I'm begging everyone but especially Gen Z cause you're young and I still have hope for ya, to listen to me about a few things: - If you do it for money, it will be a *job*. Jobs do not fill you with joy. You are obligated to be there. You won't like everyone you work with. Entertainment industries tend to be more volatile, so you will almost never have job security. You will also have to deal with situations you would never encounter in a normal career. You will work more hours than a farmer. If you're in live entertainment those hours tend to land on nights and weekends, so you won't be able to see friends and family often. You will be tired. The "cool" parts will get normalized. *You will likely fall out of love with the thing you were passionate about.* - Once you've done the work to break in, even if you realize it was a mistake, it's hard to get out. You might be treated poorly for pennies on the dollar, but the idea of giving up your "dream" is too heavy. Not to mention the stigma that comes with making it just to throw it all away. *It is far too easy to allow yourself to be abused to live your dream. It is not, and will never be, worth it.* - Entertainment careers tend to draw bright eyed, dreamy kids. You'll have tons of grassroots friends who are working hard for the right reasons. Then you'll all grow up. Some people keep their morals about them, but in my experience that's a dwindling percentage. You will watch friends turn into opportunistic monsters. Other friends will stagnate, forever 21 and too hard to hold a conversation with once you grow up yourself. And worse yet, new friends will have to be screened. Do they just want tickets to the show/con or do they actually want to hang out with you? Did they really stumble across your social page, or was it after their favorite YouTuber tagged you in a post? It seems almost conceited to have your guard up in that way, but ask any booking agent at your local venue - they'll have some stories. *Fake friends are a problem even if you're not the one in the spotlight.* - Worse still, your heroes suck. Well maybe they don't suck - though a lot of them do - but they are just people at the end of the day. Watching your heroes become human in front of your eyes isn't what everyone makes it out to be. Most times, they're better as a poster on your wall. A symbol of the things you want to be. *Once you meet your idols, you have to face the fact that they have flaws.* I know you'll still think it's worth it. I did too. But I'm here, ten years later, to tell you my dream job almost killed me. I barely made it out. Keep your day job and you'll keep your passions. You'll thank yourself in the long run.


Pistachio_Queen

This is all very true. I went to school for my favorite hobby and ended up practicing it professionally for ten years. I got so burnt out. I was sad that what used to being me so much joy began being a rote chore that I needed to slave over for money. The creative aspect got cut out of the process and my work ended up looking super corporate :-/ I switched careers a few years ago and only recently started my hobby again for fun. It's amazing how much more relaxing and enjoyable it is!


optimalwitchcraft

Yeah it's that corporate aspect I feel that kind of sucks the joy of out everything. I'm glad you were able to get your hobby back! :)


CarolineJohnson

Reasons why I don't want a job: 1. Jobs I don't like aren't worth having 2. Your comment


optimalwitchcraft

Aha, trust me I'm struggling with that too. My theory is to do something you don't hate, but don't love either. For instance if you're generally good at math, accounting probably won't drive you nuts and it'll pay the bills. Then you get to clock out when it's over and do things you really enjoy.


ItsDijital

You can even do everything right and not get anywhere. At risk of looking like a plug, look at this guy's channel, [Rick Darge](https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCM-TxWZN8Lrijw8EltDfp2g). His videos have proper production, writing, acting, all that for years now and he is doing it all for 750 subs and a few hundred views per video. There are thousands of channels like this and it just shows that even if you have everything, you still need luck to actually make money.


DaySee

Yeah this one guy Joel Havers channel, who went viral kinda recently. I'd seen a video of his on r/DeepIntoYouTube or r/InterdimensionalCable in like the middle of last year. Was surprised how much content he'd been putting out for years despite just having like 100 subscribers, and since then he's got like a million now. Sort of a feel good story though because you could tell his motivation wasn't for money. Edit: Building on what I was saying, was looking at the guys reddit page and saw that [he did an ama 2-3 years ago promoting himself. He got some heavy criticism but still took it like a champ.](https://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/9ik0xh/im_a_22_year_old_filmmaker_and_ive_made_three/e6lj56v/)


Rum-King

I definitely don’t think it’s a walk in the park. But it just sounds like most jobs. Unless you’re at the top it’s pretty shit.


MJMurcott

It depends upon what they consider a viable income, in general you would need about 1 million views per week to create a basic level of income.


Frenchticklers

That's why views alone isn't enough. But before I go on, I'd like to tell you about Ladysecret^® line of personal enjoyment accessories for women. Use the promo code FRENCHTICKLERS for a 10% discount on buttplugs


marques33

So accurate dude.


rocklou

Speaking of buttplugs, have you heard of RAID: SHADOW LEGENDS?


Ghostbuster_119

I wanna tell you all about the venus veil! It's an amazing new product that can cause micro death in the vagina for better stimulation, inspired by German technology discovered around 80 years ago the Venus veil prides itself on customer satisfaction.


alphazero16

Haha John Oliver reference, I see you're a man of culture as well


Ghostbuster_119

I'm glad someone got it.


Frenchticklers

>micro death in the vagina Name of your sex tape. Boom, roasted!


Unicorncorn21

It's not that simple anymore. These days you can have a patreon tied to your YouTube account and certain types of YouTubers can attract more paying fans than others


imBobertRobert

Yes, sponsorships, patreon, and merch sales can be insane. I was watching a YouTuber a few years ago who had briefly accepted a sponsorship for around $20,000 for 5 ad spots (something like 3 dedicated videos and 2 extra blurbs in other videos), but in doing so he accidentally alienated some of his fans who didn't like that he was taking sponsorships, so his patreon and merch sales plummeted and ended up causing him to *lose* money by the time he had produced the videos. Worst part of all is he hadn't actually followed the guidelines for the sponsorship well enough, so they refused to pay him the full amount (I think it ended up being half of the contracts worth). Now this was for a channel that was maybe, half a million subscribers at the time? Compare that to another channel I watch, who has just reached 3 million subscribers not long ago, who never runs sponsorships, doesn't have a patreon, and doesn't have any merch. Only Google ads. He is most certainly making less money.


Hypersquirrel0442

I actually really respect the people that don't make a lot, but still make vids anyway. There's a guy I watch for some silly phone game strategy. He says he loses money on a lot of vids (in app purchases), but does the vids because it pays for him to able to play the game how he likes. It's.. Mutually beneficial lol


imBobertRobert

I totally agree, its sad to see when a youtuber makes it big suddenly and their content clearly becomes worse and is more of a money grab. Then you get the ones who upload for the fun of it, when they feel like, and still produce the same quality of content (or better!).


Jenhoh

Straight up bro they gotta eat, if I make it even remotely big I’d sell out for a comfortable life if it means I can still do what I like


imBobertRobert

I'm not saying they shouldn't take the money, I'm saying they shouldn't reduce their quality to peanuts now that they're finally making money. There's still enough producers out there that don't compromise their content, but it seems like most do.


PiesangSlagter

You also find guys who go do youtube full time, and you see the content improve, because they have more time to produce really good content.


hammaxe

Also sponsorships play a huge role I imagine, like make up youtubers get make up sponsors which probably pays differently to sports youtubers who get sponsored by sports equipment. Income probably varies wildly between channels of similar popularity


TONKAHANAH

Depends on the length of your video. On his pod cast, Gus Johnson was recently talking about how they fucked content creators who do short form videos like his. Said one of his shorter videos that got over a million views only made like $40. That's why sponsors and merch sales are so important for youtubers now.


unmarkeddollas

Sort of. You also need most of those views to also watch the ads in their entirety without skipping.


Ennion

And then, there is Mr Beast. I don't understand it, but it is what it is.


connurp

I saw a video of his on Facebook watch today a d he bought everything that was in 5 different stores and then gave it all away. One of the stores was a freaking car dealership and he put a $0 tag on each car and just gave them all away. Say what you will about the guy, he is generous. I don't even watch him, shit just shows up on Facebook sometimes and I get sucked in. Like the video that played after he bought a few houses and then advertised that he was selling them for $1 and the first person that came and gave him a dollar he signed the house off to.


kamekaze1024

You will never find how much a YouTuber lives off of because they don’t just release that shit. You can find estimates on how much a YouTuber makes based on ad revenue that should be generated based on their weekly viewership. But even that doesn’t show their total net worth as they can be making money from sponsorships, affiliates, patreons, stream donations, etc.


street_pop

Ali Abdaal is an exampel of a YouTuber who is very transparent with this kinda thing, with screeenshots and stuff. Depending on the kinda thing they can also make money with skillshare courses.


CJ2807

He made around 1.2 million pounds in 2020. That is the total of a number of income flows not only youtube


jet_heller

The short answer is: Almost none. Virtually all youtubers do other things for income and use their youtube channels as a form of marketing for that. They might sell things, or do streaming or product placement or sponsorships. Things like that.


DazzmanianDev1l

This is actually a huge thing for entertainment in general. The media that's readily available barely pays for itself. There's a reason that creatives have so much merchandise. Spotify doesn't pay the bills for musicians, but it gets people to come to their shows and buy their tshirts.


Abdod_

Well yes that might be correct for people in the states or UK where living expenses might cost 10s of thousands of dollars but some other countries like mine you would be living luxury life with 1k $ 700$ can give average food/rent/monthly bills for a family of 9 so if i were to make 1k$ a month from youtube and moved out to live alone id be swiming in money lol


greeneggsnyams

Those guys that build "the most cool secret Forrest bases" probably be supplying to their whole village with their viewership and low cost of living


KnowsIittle

Are those the ones who used the "Primitive Technology: " tag and basically built their channel by ripping off others' content? They come from a larger production backing and we're able to produce content quicker that they outpaced Primitive Technology's viewership.


greeneggsnyams

I've only ever seen primitive technology


KnowsIittle

Back in the height of popularity several smaller channels started mimicking the tag "Primitive Technology: " at the start of their videos. They pushed out content at a more rapid pace than the original and eventually overtook them in viewership. It's thought to be partly what demotivated Primitive Technology in continuing the channel. His content would then just be stolen and reproduced by larger channels.


_breadpool_

[I thought they were talking about these dudes.](https://youtu.be/KI0v7W__vHA) Hopefully they're not the same as what you just wrote, because I like watching them.


Mish106

Yeah they piggybacked off the popularity and format of the original Primitive Technology channel, but they do some impressive stuff in thier own right.


hygsi

Sad thing is, once you put out an idea it no longer belongs to you, I created a new niche inside my niche and now people in my niche are also doing videos with titles like mine, at first I was hurt and wanting to call them out, but now I realize an idea doesn't belong to me, once you put it out there anyone can take inspiration as long as they're not straight up stealing your video


2SP00KY4ME

Nah, unfortunately lots of those guys film themselves starting the stuff then have actual bulldozers and machines come in to do the actual work so they can cut to the next step being done.


Hoihe

Here you make 800 USD before taxes as a chemist with a master's degree working in pharma. 1K a month is basically years worth of experience. Hungary


Uglyducklingproject

What country is that?


Abdod_

Turkey which is a really well developed country....living here is good and cheap


ttaptt

We always (until this year) have a ton of summer workers come over from Turkey every year. I've always wanted to go there, and when they told me how cheap hotels in beautiful seaside towns were I was stunned! I'll get there, one day. Your history is incredible.


Abdod_

Good luck I actually arrived here around 1.5 years 10/10 would recommend and if everything works out as i planned i have 0 interest in moving out....im staying here if possible


AbracaDaniel21

“Almost none”? I’ve watched many youtubers and a lot of them eventually get to the point where they make it their full time job. Lots of people have sponsors and also livestream, etc. but saying “almost none” seems inaccurate. Pretty sure that once you hit 100k subs and have consistent viewership, you could make that your sole income.


_Xero2Hero_

I think OP means living soley off what YouTube gives them, not other sources like sponsorships and stuff.


foilrider

If you’re living off surfshark and skillshare sponsorships and Patreon you’re not living off YouTube payments.


overzealous_dentist

I think the point was that almost no YouTubers ever hit that point. The percentage of successful YouTubers is vanishingly small - I'd guess a tiny, tiny fraction of 1% (ie., 0.00...01%).


Hazbro29

Plus the algorithm is really unfriendly for certain content, some people have 1mil subs but their vids never get put on main feeds so their vids only average 10-100k views while some have very few subscribers, upload 1 minute videos then just a few days later have views ranging in the 100s of thousands or millions


FL060

Slidebean did a breakdown of their 2020 revenue, with a couple of QA follow up videos on it. https://youtu.be/PsWzFzHeDcA


junkmailredtree

That was a great video, thanks for posting it. For anyone who does not want to invest the time in watching it, some key metrics were that their channel had about 1,000,000 watch hours in 2020, and realized $44,000 in revenue. Their expenses were $127,000 to produce their content. They were ok with those numbers because their goal with YouTube is not to generate profit, it is to drive consumers to their corporate website to purchase their core product.


SoldMomForKarma

[LTT also did a video last year and is very transparent about everything](https://youtu.be/-zt57TWkTF4). But I’d say Linus/LMG is the exception to the rule.


gitartruls01

Most of the YouTubers I follow start living off of YT alone when they hit 200-300k subs. They're probably not living glamorously at that point, and a lot of them still have a job on the side, but it's certainly possible to live comfortably as a full time YouTuber with less than 500k subs. Heavily depends on the type of content you make though.


JokuIIFrosti

I know youtubers with 10k to 30k subs making over $10,000 a month. Sub count doesn't really matter. It's about the views and the channel niche.


SteveJohnson2010

The ones who do tend to be very specialized, eg in aviation there is Sam Chui who basically gets invited on delivery flights of new aircraft for airlines as well as inaugural flights and other special flights. He produces videos on all of these which are very popular, so he earns a full-time living from his cut of YouTube advertising revenue from those videos.


mr_funny_face

According to an interview a few years ago, Chui is a financial planner and makes a good living, and can afford to take fancy trips for his channel. I would imagine he gets plenty of free flights too


tipfedora123

Socialblade is actually pretty accurate, conservative even. You can also calculate it yourself. Assuming you're producing english videos, the average cpm is like 3$ per 1000 views. If you want to make $100k a year, you need about 30 million views a year, which is roughly 3 million per month. Assuming you're uploading weekly, each vid should hit like 700k. Though keep in mind that this assumes that no one is watching your old videos, which makes the whole thing much easier and profitable because you're earning money on your old vids as well.


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Ronadon025

I think a lot comes from merchandise if they have any


uselessDM

Not with Youtube money alone these days, but I don't think you need too big a channel to get enough of a viewer base you can make it work through other things like sponsorships and Patreon for example. Especially Patreon can get you a lot of money if you do it right. I think generally if you surpass 100k in subscribers you can make a living even in the US if you have a dedicated enough viewer base. But of course this depends on a lot of factors (for example it's a lot easier to make gaming videos than run a channel where you build stuff and need all kind of equipment) and 100k is just a ballpark number where it starts to make sense, to make a comfortable living you are probably looking more at a million subscribers.


bensztainberg

From YouTube including sponsorships and merchandise they sell, any YouTube w above 75K subscribers and consistent views and uploads can live off YouTube. There’s over 30,000 people with a million subscribers, so to answer your question, at least, at the very least, 100,000 people. My best guess is somewhere between 600,000-1,000,000 people living off of YouTube, maybe more


hygsi

You don't need that many subs and at the same time that many subs doesn't guarantee a living, I've seen channels under 30k say they make a living while others with 300k say they need their jobs to make it, it really depends on lots of things, their country, their niche, their expenses etc.


-Nick____

I don’t know the correct answer, but I do just want to say that it is a lot more than just revenues from YT videos. There’s now streamer donations, patreons, discord server roles, merchandise, PO Boxes, literal top services (Twitter), TikToks, songs, sponsorships and more. Just from interacting with their audience, they get money. If you are a big YouTuber, you aren’t just a YouTuber anymore, but a brand


Not-the-best-name

Go look at the most recent Linus tech tips studio tour...


edm_ostrich

Linus actually does a breakdown of his revenue, and he doesn't rely soley on his views for money, they are something like 25% of total revenue, then there's sponsorships, live streams, merch, live events etc etc. He's building a media company and an outlier.


devilwearspranda

Kelly Stamps did an indepth video. Do check it out.


smoothazbutta

Kelly Stamps made a video about her youtube income.


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Killrtddy

I think it depends, but a lot of big youtubers don’t work day jobs. They only solely do YouTube. They make the majority of their money from sponsorships or collabs with a company. Sponsorships can pay you anywhere from 5k-100k it depends on the sponsor and your subscriber count/popularity. There’s actually a lot of youtubers who tell you how much they make from their sponsorships or collabs. Ad revenue is the lowest income they receive and surprisingly a lot of youtubers don’t make anything on their merch. I know beauty gurus will make bank on collabs with makeup brands and some of those beauty gurus don’t even get 100k views anymore but they certainly don’t work a day job again either.


Dignl

I have roughly 15,000 subscribers, and I make roughly 300-400$ every month from ad revenue, which isn't even close to enough to live on. I do, however, make a couple thousand a month on average from merch, sponsors, and other stuff like that, which would, in theory, be enough to live on. I also make money from livestream donations, but on average it isn't anywhere close to a substantial amount.


Superjombombo

As a YouTuber who has been doing this for ten+ years. 550k subs. Sooo much going on to answer directly. I make a decent living but I'm definitely not rich. I make 85 percent of my money through ad rev. All the rest is support from fans I'ts based more on views than subs but I'd say if you get a few million views a month you can start to survive. Things to keep in mind are bad months and bad years. Adpocalypse meant same views but half the money for almost a year. Pandemic? Suck my balls 66percentbas much money. Same views. I also upload daily and it can be a slight soul suck but always makes me feel good when people tell me how I've helped them through a tough time or anything.


shaddowkhan

There is this guy that goes out fishing on his kayak. Not a big channel but he makes about minimum wage. He does a break down every month.


Tiggarenstal

Evan Ranft made a video recently about it. I think he has 225,000 subscribers. He’s really transparent about his channel and revenue etc. https://youtu.be/7ZZif7r1xtU


red336

Most YouTubers who go full time usually also stream on twitch, which is where the majority of their income comes from. People can subscribe for 5$, and donate to have their message pop up on screen


[deleted]

Socialblade is a website you could visit. But i am not sure if the information on this site is actually right


unmarkeddollas

Socialblade is so inaccurate. It literally says "X youtube channel makes about $75 to $3000 per video." 🤔