Five Ways to Make Money From YouTube

From Billboard Magazine:

Five Ways to Make Money From YouTube (From the Magazine)

The following story is excerpted from a special feature package from the new issue of Billboard magazine entitled “YouTube entitled “YouTube 3.0: Show Me the Money.” With the ever expanding YouTube Economy in 2013 expected to generate $3.6 billion in revenue (according to estimates from Barclays) and major label ad revenue this year more than doubling, there is clearly a lot of money to made from the world’s dominant music video platform. Below are some tips on how to increase your share of the pie.


YouTube’s Partner Program allows YouTube channel owners to enable monetization on their content, allowing them to earn a portion of the revenue from the ads that run against their videos. But content creators can also monetize in partnership with multichannel networks (MCNs) like Maker Studios, Fullscreen and Machinima that work within the YouTube ecosystem by “signing” quality content creators and then offering services beyond simple channel monetization. By signing to MCNs, musicians, artists, comedians, vloggers (video bloggers) and other YouTube content creators void a portion of their contract with YouTube in order to take advantage of the benefits that the MCN provides. In turn, the MCN uses its pooled subscriber base of the hundreds, sometimes thousands, of artists signed to its network in order to collectively bargain for higher ad rates from YouTube, as well as work to find other lucrative financial opportunities for content creators outside of the platform.


In an op-ed for Billboard, SONGS Music Publishing CEO Matt Pincus wrote that “there are currently billions of streams of music being watched by millions of people on YouTube, for which songwriters and their music publishers are receiving no money.” This is because both YouTube and the MCNs aren’t in the business of alerting publishers when they’re owed money. Unless publishers do so themselves, songwriters will miss out on money they’re owed from ads running against videos that feature their music. Brandon Martinez is co-founder/CEO of Brooklyn-based INDmusic, which works with label partners like Mad Decent and original content programmers like Ahmir “?uestlove” Thompson’s Okayplayer to monetize not just the video portion of YouTube, but the publishing and recording rights as well, by helping publishers claim what they’re owed from YouTube. It’s this knowledge of YouTube’s back-end and the nuts and bolts of rights management on the platform that allowed the company to capitalize on Baauer’s “Harlem Shake” viral phenomenon. “As a music partner, there’s very specific metadata that you need to have in your uploads, which will greatly benefit you,” Martinez says. That “specific metadata” is an international standard recording code (ISRC) that computers use to identify the unique sound recording that must be properly claimed through the RIAA, a process that isn’t so commonly known.

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