My road to Youtube monetization has been a lesson in patience and persistence. It took me five hundred sixty days to reach that milestone. And while it is a big accomplishment for me, I’m hoping it is just the beginning. In How I Got Monetized on Youtube as a Crafter, I’m sharing what worked, what didn’t work and how you can do it too.
Crafting Youtube channels are a very popular source of education and inspiration. I’ve learned so much from different channels and credit them with being able to finally improve my knitting skills. Before the days of Youtube, learning a new craft could be difficult. You either had to know someone who could teach you or have a great local library with the perfect book that explained each step perfectly.
There are many reasons why crafters, makers, knitters and crocheters may want to start a Youtube channel. For me, it is a wonderful creative outlet. It’s also a way for me to share my love of knitting, crocheting and amigurumi without driving my family completely mad. Win-win for everyone!
I am an educator at heart and love sharing what I learn. In 2018 I became a Certified Crochet Instructor through the Craft Yarn Council. I taught a few in-person sessions, but found that teaching a physical class could only reach a handful of people at a time. Through YouTube, a crafting channel can reach hundreds or even thousands of eager students.
Online learning has become big business. Most people are busier than ever before and want to learn new things but in the comfort of their own homes, at their own pace and on their own time. And due to recent events, many people have found themselves sheltering in place with lots of free time on their hands.
What is Youtube Monetization?
Becoming monetized on Youtube is a goal many video creators reach for. It’s the point in the journey when you can begin making and income from advertisements before, during or after your videos. It’s a way for creators to make a little (or a lot) of money to continue providing entertainment and information for free.
Requirement for Monetization
To become monetized on Youtube, creators must reach two milestones. You will need to have 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 watch hours. I personally reached the subscriber requirement way before I reached the number of watch hours needed.
But once you reach both of those conditions, Youtube will reach out to you to apply for monetization. They also have great resources to help you understand everything along the way.
I don’t want to waste your precious time explaining the process of what to do once you hit those milestones but share how I, as a crochet and knitting channel, reached those goals and started making money on Youtube.
Patience, my Dear
There are a few channels that go viral in a short amount of time. They become monetized within a few weeks or months of launching their content. That didn’t happen to me. It took me a total of five hundred sixty days, but who’s counting?
I posted my very first set of videos on October 17th, 2018. They were three tutorials for how to crochet a teddy bear I had designed. They were awful. Let me explain this a little further. Awful is too nice of a word to describe the degree to which these videos were terrible. They were horrific, abhorrent and atrocious.
In January of 2019 I became more serious about Le Petit Saint Crochet and took a blogging course from Lisa Bass from Farmhouse on Boone. Lisa is a very successful blogger and YouTuber who is now making a very generous full time income. In her course she also shared a little about YouTube and how to start your own channel.
I began posting one blog post and a coordinating YouTube video every week (missed a week or two due to illness). But growth on my channel was slow until I became a student of YouTube. I knew how to knit, crochet and make amigurumi, but I needed to learn how to share that passion in video form.
When Lisa came out with her second course, Video for Bloggers, I enrolled the first day it was available. I honestly do not believe I would have ever become monetized on YouTube if it hadn’t been for this course. I learned that I didn’t need to work harder, but smarter.
If I had continued doing it my way, I would have eventually become frustrated and given up. There are so many things to learn and I am forever grateful for an affordable course that gave me the direction and tools I needed to succeed on YouTube.
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If you are interested in starting or growing a YouTube channel here are my best recommendations. These are the attitudes I adopted that helped me achieve monetization on YouTube.
Attitude of Patience
For most of us, growth on YouTube will be slow. Balance your expectations with reality. When you see a channel with thousands or even millions of subscribers it’s easy to believe that it just happened for them. In reality most worked extremely hard for years to achieve that level of success.
Be patient with yourself and YouTube. It will take time for you to build a library of videos and for YouTube to see you as a reliable channel. Always remember that YouTube’s main objective is to keep viewers on their platform. So the more videos you have and the better quality they are only helps you in the long run.
The next mindset you need to adopt is one of commitment. YouTube rewards those who post consistently. Common wisdom is that to succeed on YouTube you need to post twice a week. I knew early on that I wouldn’t be able to produce that much content with my other responsibilities as a wife and mother. But I knew I could commit once a week.
I have stuck to that commitment through surgeries, travel and daily life. It has not been easy and I did end up missing a couple of weeks due to unexpected family needs. You must develop an attitude of pushing through even when you don’t feel like it.
One of the best attitudes I’ve adopted in the past few years is to invest in myself. Instead of going this alone, find resources to help you. The course I purchased was not only full of invaluable information, but has a private Facebook group for students as well. It is a place to share ideas, ask questions and get a kick in the pants when we start to whine or doubt ourselves.
If I could only give you one piece of advice, this would be it. Invest in you. Get the support you need to achieve your dreams. Don’t try to do this alone.
While there are many different pieces of equipment, these are the ones I invested in to improve my channel.
I started with only an iphone, but as I became more serious about YouTube I began investing in pieces of equipment to help the quailty of my videos to improve. There is no substitute for hard work, but equipment can make a good video, great.
Improving the sound of your Youtube videos is low hanging fruit. It’s inexpensive and makes a big impact. Did you know that studies have shown that viewers will click off a video if the sound is of low quality?
The first mic I invested in plugged right into my iPhone. It was an inexpensive lavalier mic and clipped right onto my shirt. It provided great sound and was easy to use. Before purchasing this type of mic, make sure to check that it is compatible with your particular phone.
Earlier this year I upgraded to a mic that attaches directly to my camera. It came in a kit, that I will share more about below. I am really glad I invested in this piece of equipment. The sound quality is amazing and I can move around without worrying about tripping over the lavalier mic wire.
The second piece of equipment I invested in was lighting. I don’t have a great deal of natural lighting in my home and I wanted to be able to film during the day or evening if I wanted to. We also converted our basement laundry room into my craft room, which is where I film most of my videos now.
Lighting has helped my video quality a ton! When I look back at my videos pre-lighting, many of them look dull and dark. A good set of lights are fairly inexpensive and are worth the investment.
I originally bought an entry level DSLR camera thinking that it would be great for video. Boy was I wrong. Although the Canon EOS Rebel is a great camera for taking photos, it is not good for video for several reasons, which include audio and focus. I won’t go into all the details but take my advice and do your research before you invest in a camera. Don’t believe what the guy at your local electronics store tells you. Ask me how I know.
While that camera ended up being a big ole waste of money, I did learn what I needed from a camera to shoot video. In January I purchased the Canon 80D. It came in a Video Creators kit which included a Rode mic among other goodies.
This took my videos from ok, to wowzers. I seriously cannot get over how great this camera is. The video quality is amazing and has facial tracking for focus. I cannot say enough about this camera and believe it is worth every penny.
I invested in a small tripod for my iphone when that was the only way I had to film videos. It worked great and I could prop it up anywhere! If you are going to be using your phone I highly recommend getting something like this. It will make life much easier.
Now I have a tripod for my camera. It’s fairly basic and does what I need it to do. It does have an adaptor so that I can use it for my phone as well, which is a nice feature to have.
External Hard Drive
I had no idea how important an external hard drive would be. I have a fairly small laptop and it has little storage. The size of video files are huge and ate up every last bit of space I had. I purchased an inexpensive external hard drive and it has served me very well.
Make sure that you check to see if it is compatible for your particular computer and your storage needs.
How I Got Monetized on YouTube
I hope this helped you in some way, whether you already have a YouTube channel or hope to start one. There is no one way to become monetized on YouTube, but for most of us it’s going to require a lot of patience and gumption.
If you have any questions, please feel free to post them here or on my YouTube channel! I’m only a click away!