Brand sponsorship or product placement can be used in YouTube content to supplement standard Adsense content. These sponsorships can cover any kind of product category but must adhere to YouTube’s ad policies. Brand sponsorship covers any piece of content that has been created in conjunction with a third party where that third party’s brand, message or product are integrated directly into the video. This is typically due to the marketer paying a content creator to do so.
Paid endorsements are slightly different, in that a marketer will select a personality or voice they feel compliments their brand, or they feel falls in line with the beliefs of the creator so that they can reach a relevant audience through a trusted platform, therefore garnering brand awareness through association.
Recently, the law surrounding sponsored YouTube content has changed, meaning it is now illegal to promote any third-party product, service or brand where you have been paid to do so without clear messaging indicating that the content is sponsored. This also means that you must notify YouTube if any of the content you upload contains a product placement, endorsement, or any other commercial relationship.
Merchandising relates to any product related to your own personal brand that is put out under your approval for consumers to purchase. A large scale example of this is beauty vlogger Zoella who, over a number of years, has released a full line of branded beauty products exclusive to High Street retailer Superdrug which earnt an estimated £1,000,000 worth of sales within the first five months. Add to that the countless t-shirts and accessories released with Zoella branding and you come back with a rather large sum of money from merchandising alone. That’s not even accounting for ad revenue or money from brand sponsorships.
Merchandising can range from branded products to products associated with or derivative of your online content, including characters, slogans or memorabilia.
In conclusion, YouTube is a lucrative business if you know how to use it effectively. As with any business there are countless pitfalls to be avoided, but by using an effective combination of Ad placements, brand sponsorship deals and clever merchandising, you could start earning money on YouTube to become an internet sensation.