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YouTube Partner Program Creates Community of Over 2 Million Members

  • Nadine Ghiran - SUBTA
  • Aug 25, 2021
  • 3 minute read

The YouTube Partner Program (YPP) has reached a milestone of 2 million members, according to a recent blog post by Neal Mohan, Chief Production Officer at YouTube.

YPP was launched as a way to offer creators, or YouTubers, a way to monetize their video content while diversifying recurring revenue streams through subscription services like YouTube Premium and Channel Memberships. 

Over the last three years, the YouTube Partner Program has enabled creators, artists, and media companies to earn a living with YouTube, paying them more than $30 billion in revenue collectively, according to Mohan.

Read on to learn how the YouTube Partner Program is supporting creators through subscriptions and influenced Youtube’s growth.

The YouTube Partner Program at a Glance

Google bought YouTube in 2006 for $1.65 billion in a stock-for-stock transaction. The acquisition was a stepping stone for both companies in providing a well-rounded experience for YouTube’s users and offering “new opportunities for professional content owners to distribute their work to reach a vast new audience,” according to a press release.

Part of that initiative was establishing the YouTube Partner Program one year later as “a first-of-its-kind open monetization program,” according to Mohan. To qualify for the application of YPP, a Youtuber’s channel has to have at least 4,000 valid public watch hours in the last year and more than 1,000 subscribers.

Partners are qualified to set a channel membership fee — paid for by viewers — in exchange for exclusive content such as live streams, chats, and custom emoji settings in the comment section. 

Additionally, YouTube has prioritized its platform’s creators by giving them more than half of the revenue from YouTube Premium.

YouTube Premium — a $11.99/month subscription with access to ad-free videos, downloadable content, and YouTube Music Premium — is a secondary revenue stream that complements what creators are already making from ad revenues. YouTube’s ad revenue alone surpassed $7 billion in Q2 2021, which was more than any quarter in history, according to Mohan’s blog post.

In the last 14 years, the YouTube Partner Program has expanded its monetization capabilities to better “reward trusted creators financially and help them ramp up their businesses,” wrote Mohan. This will always be YouTube’s top priority as the platform continues to grow its user numbers, according to Mohan.

More Social Networks Are Financially Rewarding Creators

YouTube is one of the many platforms readily adjusting its business model to support the needs of its market. Tumblr+ and Twitter Blue are the latest initiatives from other social networks prioritizing users’ freedom.

The pandemic gave people fewer options to socialize with others, resulting in a large increase in YouTube viewership. 

For example, “Get Ready With Me” videos — a series demonstrating the life routines of beauty creators — became increasingly popular and viewership grew by 600% amidst isolation. 

Furthermore, YouTube Premium — which includes the Premium Music feature — reached 30 million subscribers in 2020. The platform currently attracts more than 2 billion viewers a month, according to Philipp Schindler, Google’s Senior Vice President and Chief Business Officer.

As a result, content creation has finally reached a point of being a full-time job, and social networks are adjusting their business models accordingly. In 2019, YouTube was responsible for 345,000 full-time jobs in the United States alone, wrote Mohan. 

YouTubers generated four times more revenue year over year in 2020, according to Muli Salem, Channel Membership Product Manager at YouTube. Creators earning six figures increased by 35% over the same period of time, according to Mohan. 

“We continue investing in new tools that help creators earn money while strengthening the relationship with their viewers,” wrote Mohan.

Key Takeaways:

  • The YouTube Partner Program (YPP) now has 2 million members.
  • YPP is a monetization program for YouTubers to diversify their revenue streams.
  • Content creators can make a profit of more than half of YouTube’s earnings from their videos through subscriptions, like YouTube Premium and channel memberships, as well as through ad revenue.
  • Content creation is a full-time job, with those making six figures on YouTube increasing by 35% in 2020 year over year.

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