YouTube gives creators another way to earn revenue directly from their audience with membership gifting, a feature comparable to gifted subscriptions on Twitch.
This will allow viewers to buy channel memberships for other viewers.
For viewers, it’s a way to support their favorite creators in a way that gives something extra to their community.
A beta version of Channel Memberships Gifting is rolling out to a small group of creators to start, and will be expanded to more channels over the coming months.
If you’re interested in getting access to the feature early you can express interest by submitting a form linked to at the bottom of this article.
YouTube Channel Membership Gifting
Monetized YouTube channels have the option to earn revenue by offering memberships to users.
A channel membership grants perks such as special icons that show up in a creator’s comment section, members-only livestreams, and more. It’s similar to subscriptions, or “subs,” on steaming platform Twitch.
Prior to the rollout of membership gifting, users could only buy memberships for themselves. That meant, at most, users could buy one membership per month.
With membership gifting, channel members can buy a set number of memberships [5, 10, 20] in a single purchase. YouTube will “gift” out those memberships to other viewers.
Viewers who receive a gift memberships get 1 month of access to your channel membership perks. Recipients don’t have to pay anything, and creators receive the usual revenue share from each transaction.
How Does Membership Gifting Work?
Gifted channel memberships can be purchased on desktop during a creator’s livestream. Click the $ button next to the live chat to purchase gift memberships on live streams.
Viewers have to opt-in to be eligible to receive gifts on a channel. During the Beta, users can opt-in by clicking ‘Allow Gifts’ when prompted.
YouTube distributes gift memberships to viewers based on how much they interact with your channel. Loyal viewers are more likely to receive gift memberships than first-time viewers.
Viewers get notified with a personal live chat message and email if they receive a gift membership. A gifted memberships is non-recurring and the recipient doesn’t incur any fees.
Gifted Memberships A Boon To YouTube Creators?
Given the popularity of Twitch’s gifted subs, membership gifting has the potential to boost earnings in a noticeable way for people who stream on YouTube.
If you look at the breakdown of subscriptions for popular Twitch streamers, you can see gifted subs make up roughly 5% to 10% of their total active subscriptions.
How Can Creators Sell Memberships?
I reached out to Greg Jarboe, president of SEO-PR and author of YouTube and Video Marketing, for his take on this update and example of how creators can make money with subscriptions.
Jarboe’s take is below:
Channel Memberships is just one of several options that YouTube Partners now have. Other ones include:
- Ad revenue sharing.
- Selling branded merchandise.
- Super Chat and Super Stickers.
- Premium revenue sharing.
So, Memberships Gifting will be an interesting option for the small percentage of content creators who are currently making money with channel memberships. Who are they? Example include:
- Rachana Ranada, a Chartered Accountant in India, who is helping viewers learn more about financial literacy. She has earned over $100,00 offering memberships.
- Prince Ohakam, a gaming creator better known as Prince Charming, is using channel memberships. He offers members the opportunity to play live video games with him. He also offers live streams, videos, posts, and custom emojis.
- Anna Yakimenko, a Russian fashion consultant based in Milan, uses channel memberships to offer her audience discounts on merchandise, exclusive live streams, and customized fashion advice.
Now, channel memberships aren’t for everyone, so gifting them will be of interest to relatively few content creators. But, if they help to keep the creator economy healthy and diverse, then they should be considered a great tool in the toolbox.
Channels interested in getting early access to this feature can fill out a request form.
Source: YouTube Help
Featured Image: Tada Images/Shutterstock