Business Insider Edition

A YouTube creator switched her strategy and doubled the amount of money she made

Amanda Perelli , Business Insider US
 Jan 22, 2020, 08:16 AM
Shelby Church has 1.4 million subscribers on YouTube.
Shelby Church
  • Some creators on YouTube have techniques they use to maximize how much money they earn off a single video.
  • Shelby Church, who has 1.4 million subscribers, said she earned more than twice as much money in 2019 from YouTube ads than in 2018 by extending her videos to over 10 minutes long.
  • This is a common strategy among creators, and works because it allows them to include more ads in their videos to help boost their earnings.
  • For more stories go to the Business Insider South Africa homepage.

After talking with friends on the platform, YouTube star Shelby Church (1.4 million subscribers) realized she could be earning a lot more money off her videos.

She told Business Insider that in mid 2019, she learned that by simply extending her videos to over 10 minutes long, she could double the revenue she was making from Google-placed ads.

Church earns a big portion of her revenue directly from the platform this way, and by promoting brands on her channel and Instagram page.

YouTube allows creators with 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 watch hours to monetize their channels with ads placed by Google. How much money a creator earns (known as AdSense revenue) depends on the video's watch time, length, video type, and viewer demographics - among other factors.

How Church doubled her YouTube revenue by extending the length of her videos to over 10 minutes long

One common technique creators on YouTube employ as a way to earn more money is making their videos longer so they can contain more ads.

Why does this work?

A video over 10 minutes long can contain multiple ad options, like one pre-roll ad, multiple mid-roll ads, and a post-roll ad that plays at the end of a video.

In 2018, most of the videos that Church uploaded were under 10 minutes long, she said. Since they were shorter, she was only able to include one ad.

Midway through 2019, she began to extend the length of her videos, and by the end of the year, she had made double the money from AdSense that she made in 2019.

Other creators like entrepreneur Kevin David (who has 838,000 subscribers on YouTube) and Marina Mogilko (1.7 million subscribers) told Business Insider that they use this strategy as well. They also create videos focused on viewers who are more valuable to advertisers.

Church said now her videos are typically about 10 to 12 minutes. She'll usually include one pre-roll ad before the video (which is the default on YouTube), and two ads within the video, three or four minutes apart.

She found that in 2019, her videos over 10 minutes long generally made around $5.00 per 1,000 views, while the videos under 10 minutes usually made around $2.00 per 1,000 views. Church said in her experience, YouTube takes about half of that.

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