Imma post some pretty unique content here right quick.
I've never posted this information publicly, so please be cautious about where you share this information.
I'm not sure what the terms or policies are for sharing this kind of content on the platforms I earn from (and frankly I'm not going through hundreds of pages of terms and policies to find out).
This is just an interesting topic and I'm loving the dev to community so I'm trying to throw some more unique content up here to help other current and/or potential dev creators out there.
With that, I'm going to post my YouTube income for my channel as well as my Udemy income. I'm also going to throw some other potential income opportunities worth exploring. Some resources I use. And other revenue streams worth looking into given your audience (and type of audience).
My YouTube Income (Clean Code Studio)
For starters here's my youtube income when I was around 2000 to 2500 subscribers (maybe a few less than that at the time).
I actually haven't been monetized in a minute due to my own laziness and not doing some Google ad-sense tax stuff that you're required to do in order to stay monetized.
But, while I was monetized (I'm guessing when I had 1750ish to 2500ish subscribers) I was earning between
$3+ per day.
The YouTube revenue model is pretty cool because it reminds me quite a bit of compounding return on your investment.
More than that, it can indeed be a passive type of in come (at least temporarily). I took a 6 month vacation to Hawaii during 2020 and paused my content creation while I was enjoying the Pacific islander life styler.
YouTube is a hard platform to get started on, but once you have some momentum - it's really up to you to keep growing.
My Udemy Income (Clean Code Studio)
Next up is the Udemy courses. These udemy courses are literally two of my YouTube courses copied to Udemy. One is free and the other is paid. Understandably the paid course ratings aren't great. I haven't put much time and/or effort toward making it a Udemy caliber course. I added it to udemy out of curiosity.
I've made almost $100 from that sub-par pay to watch course. Here's the analytics for both of my courses (One free and one paid both courses copied directly from my YouTube channel). You can also see the income I've made from my single paid course on Udemy here.
Don't buy it, the entire course is on my YouTube channel. I was trying to figure out if Udemy was worth the time investment to create an entire course from scratch.
If I had to take a guess, I'd say - yes, as long as you can create very high quality content, it would be. Maybe one day I'll get around to creating an entire Udemy course, but so far I haven't. We shall see what the future holds.
In all honesty, I'd probably create my own subscription based website to earn all the income personally instead of sharing it with Udemy if I were aiming for this kind of income model.
That being said, Udemy (As well as skill Share, LinkedIn Learning, and all similar platforms) do market your courses. You won't earn as much if they had to pay to drive that user to buy your course, but if you don't have a lot of eyes on you as of yet - it's a great way to start getting them. The amount you make on Udemy is relative to how easy your course is to market. The more Udemy feels user's like your course along with how easy (low cost) it is, the more Udemy will invest into marketing it. Not a bad deal if you're not the greatest marketer (And trust me, very few of us are anywhere near the greatest marketers out there).
Sponsorships & Brand Deals are basically companies paying you to:
- Create a video reviewing their product
- Drop a reference to their biz/product
- Or market them in any other way.
You market a company in your content to your audience. Move forward with caution...
There are several types of brand deals/sponsorships. To check out what the monetary value of your audience is for the average brand checkout Social Blue Book you're audience
I've had a few sponsorship offers. Sponsorships are basically brands reaching out to you to make a video or to place their product in your video in return for you advertising them or their product, they pay you.
The software tutorials I make have actually had a few types of brand deals/sponsorship offers. The first is to make a single video. There was a VPN company that reached out to me, and the little research I did showed that being a "brand ambassador" for their product is a pretty awesome set up. They seem to treat the people who market for them well.
That being said, their product didn't vibe with my audience that well and I was in the middle of the Google Interview process. Between these two points, I decided not to market their product on my channel.
If I hadn't been in the middle of Google's interview process and the product/brand they were wanting to sponsor (A VPN) seemed like it would have added value to my subscriber base then I would have probably done it. But, since I didn't feel my audience would've been provided the value I opted out of the $100ish pay day. Not too hard of a pay day to say no to in exchange to continue growing your audience. In 5 years, if my audience is 10x the size, that's a much higher pay day. Most likely even higher than $1000 considering the channel growth is on track to 10x that 10x'd size 5 years from then.
As I mentioned earlier - building an audience/following/subscriber base feels much more like an investment on compounding return. I'm in the game for the long run, I highly recommend you take the same approach. Don't forfeit value for a pay day - in the long term game it rarely (and by rarely I mean never) makes sense. Neither for your followers or your wallet.
You invest a lot of time and effort into adding value for your audience. You add content your audience enjoys and learns from. Don't trade that for the short term pay day. Always take the harder router. You want to build trust, add true value, and build an audience based on the value you can add to the world in a genuine and meaningful way.
The next kind of "brand sponsorships" that aren't really brand sponsorships that have hit my inbox as I've grown are a littlleee bit different.
I've had offers to make coding courses for books. I think the highest offer was around $2000 - BUT that was to create 40+ lessons that I wouldn't have the rights to.
They also have fine print in those deals that scare the living crap outta me.
They can ask for an unlimited number of revisions in the course videos you create, you're on a time line and if you don't meet that time line you may have to return money you've already earned from them, and over all it feels like a great trap to trick you into a lot of free labour. If it does end up being a good deal, then it's because they happened to be great people to work with. The contracts are absolutely written up in their favor and the money may look great when it's a single chunk of change - but when you start measuring out the time it would actually take you...let's just say these kind of deals aren't as appealing (like at all).
Does this mean I would never consider a deal like this? Where I create content for other people?
Well, although I haven't accepted this kind of deal before, I can only think of two reasons I ever would:
- I earn a royalty
- If I earn, say 20, on every book sold I maaayyyy consider it. It's a product that I'm advertising to my user base that I have created. My guess is that conversion rates would be higher than other affiliate programs I could sell product through since the product is more content of my own. The user's are already reading/watching/listening to me. Promoting something that I've had a major role in creating could be an awesome opportunity. The user's would be able to find high value content I've created - they trust my content. On the other hand, I'd be making some income from the hard work I've invested into creating some awesome content that truly helps people.
That being said, if this were my goal and if I have the influence and/or marketing funnel in place to drive that kind of traffic to a product of my own - then I'd imagine that making it from scratch by myself and earning 100% of that income would be worth the extra time investment.
- 2. If the book deal is with someone of note or a company of note.
If you're making a course for an author of considerable note or a company of considerable note, then I'd highly consider investing the time into creating a course like this.
Associating your brand/name with trusted entities widely known is usually incredibly worth while. You build your brand, have a trusted source to reference as something you've worked on, and given they are widely trusted - will now have a ton more eyes on you that you want on you.
Anyways, those are just a couple of my thoughts - truth be told I haven't taken any brand sponsorships to date. According to social blue book, here's are the amounts my audiences for each of Clean Code Studio's platforms would be worth if/when I do take on some brand deals/sponsorships.
Given this post has positive feedback, I'd also be down to dive into depth about creating dev content and how to earn $ from that content.
There's several revenue streams we haven't covered including Affiliate Marketing (What is it and awesome affiliate programs), Merchandising (How to create your own product and sell it for free across several platforms), and even SaSS educational platform income models like the Subscription based model (How to set it up).
If you're interested in creating content as a software developer, the fact is you have a ton of opportunity in front of you.
You could pretty easily start earning a couple extra bucks each day.
After that, it's kind of up to how far you want to take it -- how invested are you into the content? What kind of content are you creating?
If you're talking about reaching that next milestone, then I'd think collaborations and content pipe lines are next on your list -- but that's only if you want to start taking your content journey more seriously.
What about blogging, newsletters, branding yourself as an "authority" for whatever your dev thing is?
What about creating videos? Mics, video editors, starting blogs, cross blogging, creating your own website, domain authority, SEO?
How bout social media platforms? How can you turn your tweets into instagram posts? Should you use all 30 hash tags (Hint: no you shouldn't - just learned that this past week and my posts are much more visible because I'm only using 8 to 15 instagram hash tags now).
What about productivity? How do you manage creating content on so many platforms? And is it really worth it? Where do you start?
What about acoustically treating your room? Podcasts? Should I pay to market my content?
Holy crap, there's more questions than answers!!! Is this just insanity?
These are all valid questions and valid considerations. Sometimes, like with software, creating content can feel like insanity -- but, with 41.3% of the world about to get internet in the next 7 years creating content is incredibly valuable.
You don't have to invest the amount of time to understand it all.
At first, take the approach of "Document, don't create". As you start to build a following maybe that opportunity will start to catch your attention.
Then you'll look to expand your content creation and share what you know even further - in different ways - and possibly on more platforms.
Once you're there, you'll have 1001 questions (like you've had and will always have withsoftware engineering).
The truth is, the best course of action is to get started. Invest into the long term game. Start out easy. Build up a following via a single blog post a week.
Do that for the next 10 years of your career - I'd bet many of you would be in the situation where you'll be able to earn as much if not more from your blog than your career.
Hell, 520 blog articles - create a book. Share it on Amazon. Throw up a wordpress site (yes, I also hate wordpress but hey - it's good for what it's good for, creating blogs).
I've never seen a website that's been up for 10+ years with 520+ articles not earn a substantial chunk of change. It just happens to be that compounding kind of return.
It starts slow, but once the momentum is going it just keeps increasing. The amount you earn between year 10 and 11 on that blog will most likely be more than the first 10 years combined.
Year 11? Yah, you'll probably make more that year than the entire 10 years before that.
What if you made 10k in year 10? Year 11 you could easily be making 15k to 20k. Year 12 - somewhere around 30k.
Not only that, but now you have an audience. You have that next awesome software idea? Now you have the eyes.
The truth is, you can make the coolest and best piece of software in the world. If you don't have the eyes, you're not going anywhere with it.
Add value to the world, share the knowledge, earn trust. Then, when you have something worth sharing with the world - the world won't just be listening. They'll trust you, believe in you, and be excited for what you've got going.
Hell, double that one blog per week to two blogs. That's 1040 blog posts in 10 years.
Throw up your wordpress site. Do just that. And boom, you're solid.
In the short term, you won't see much traffic.
In the long run? It's not even a question. Find one other blogger who's created 1040 blog posts on the same area of expertise and hasn't made it to the point where they're profitable.
Anyways, I'm ranting now - but that's why I love creating content for software developers. I love it, because I'm looking at the long term game. In the short term everything is volatile. In the long term, the truth shows itself. And if you are consistent in the long term and adding much needed value to the world in form of sharing software developer knowledge through whatever platforms...the truth is you're adding value. The truth is the world pays back value. The truth is it will be worth it.
I create dev content. You should too! And here were a few ways to earn a buck doing it.
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