Earn extra money through sponsorships
Sponsorships is a new tool that enables you to build a membership business for your super fans, who pay to get access to special benefits provided by you.
Getting started with sponsorships
You can earn money through YouTube by setting up sponsorships on your channel. Sponsorships is a way for your audience to make monthly payments to your channel and in return, they receive a badge and emoji that you can design, and other sponsor perks that you decide and deliver to your sponsors.Note: Sponsorships is currently available for eligible channels on the YouTube Gaming app. We are rolling this feature out more widely to channels throughout 2018. Click here to see if you’re eligible to enable sponsorships.
What can you offer your sponsors?
Coming up with your perks is vital to converting your viewers into sponsors. What unique offerings can you provide to your fans that could encourage them to sponsor you month after month? And what’s realistic for you to deliver?
Here are four golden rules for a great perk:
- It doesn’t cost you much, but your viewers can’t get it anywhere else.
- It’s scalable: the time it takes to deliver it remains the same as your number of sponsors grows, and it pleases all your sponsors at once.
- It keeps your sponsors engaged, month after month - after all, their payments are monthly, not one-off.
- It doesn’t alienate your non-sponsors. We don’t recommend that you take anything away from your regular viewers - your sponsors are paying to get more.
Keep in mind that a few things aren’t permitted, like contests and lotteries - and of course, keep to our Community Guidelines. All perks are reviewed before you can turn on the sponsor button and you can get a strike for submitting perks that don’t comply with Community Guidelines, so be sure to read and understand them!
You can use the Community tab to deliver your perks by using the drop-down menu to make a post visible only to sponsors. That includes any videos you want to share: just make them unlisted and then post the link.
Tips for perk ideas:
- Videos: Rough cuts, bloopers, behind the scenes footage, early access to your regular videos or sponsors-only live streams (hint: making a bunch of new videos from scratch for your sponsors can be a lot of work!)
- Extra engagement: exclusive live streams for Q&A, sponsors-only chat on your public live streams, polls to decide your future videos, photos or text updates on your Community tab
- Status: through call-outs or onscreen credits
See it in action
Creating awesome badges and emoji
Badges and custom emoji are two other exclusive benefits your audience receives when they sponsor your channel. Your badge appears next to their username in comments and live chat to indicate they’re a sponsor.
Emoji are fun graphics that your sponsors can use in live chat on your channel. The more sponsors you have, the more emoji you can create. These are fun ways that your sponsors can visually stand out. So, get your creative juices flowing and make the most of these features! Just remember to comply with YouTube’s Terms of Service and Community Guidelines and don’t violate others’ copyright or privacy rights.
The first step to consider is what images to use. Your badges should make your sponsors feel connected to your channel and proud to sponsor you, whereas your emoji should help them express their emotions, reactions or share inside-jokes. What do you commonly say in your videos? What reactions do you expect people to have to your videos? You could also ask your viewers what kind of emoji they’d want to use.
Some creators hire a designer and some make emoji themselves – it's up to you. There are many contract design websites and apps with experts in emoji design, such as fiverr, upwork or freelancer. The cost of an emoji design can vary depending on the skill level and seniority of your graphic artist. Try to have all your emoji designed by the same artist: this will help ensure that the set looks professional.
Guidelines for great emoji:
- Keep them simple - remember they show up pretty small.
- Make sure they’re easy to understand at a glance.
- Sharp lines can aid design.
- Use good lighting if based on photos.
- Ensure they look good on both black and white backgrounds, (since they can be seen on both.)
See it in action
We’ve seen that creators who make announcement videos convert more of their subscribers to sponsors than those who don’t. One of the best ways to launch sponsorships on your channel is by making your video in advance, and publishing it straight after you turn on the sponsor button.
It’s understandable if you’re nervous about asking your audience for money, but the only way to explain what you’re doing and why is by tackling it head-on.
And don’t stop with the announcement video! To keep growing your sponsorships community you’ll need to regularly remind your viewers about sponsoring you in your videos and on other social platforms - just like you remind them to comment, like and subscribe.
Tips for your announcement video:
- Why you’re launching sponsorships
- What you’re offering your sponsors
- How you’ll deliver their perks
- Reassure the rest of your audience that nothing will change for them
See it in action