YouTube has become, over the past decade, very popular with Africans. As of 2015, the number of videos uploaded in Africa has doubled over the years. On top of that, the viewing time increased by 120%. More and more Africans are making money from the videos they upload. Income is based on the popularity of youtubers, also known as content publishers on YouTube. Let’s see how it works!

The prerequisite …

# 1 Conditions

Well no, just uploading videos to YouTube is not enough to get paid. It would be too easy, don’t you think? There are still a few conditions to fulfill:

  • Obviously have a YouTube channel;
  • Reside in a country or region where the YouTube Partner Program is available;
  • Have an associated AdSense account;
  • Have a minimum of 1,000 subscribers;
  • Have a cumulative total of at least 4,000 valid viewing hours during the last twelve (12) months (on public videos);
  • Post videos for which you own 100% rights. This also includes the soundtrack;
  • Monetization should never have been turned off for your YouTube channel in the past.
  • For minors (under 18), confirmation of parental consent is required.

# 2 activate monetization of your YouTube channel

There are six (06) steps to activate the monetization of an account:

  • Step 1: connect to YouTube;
  • Step 2: check that the connection is made on the correct account by clicking at the top right (the last icon);
  • Step 3: click on “YouTube Studio”;
  • Step 4: Click on the menu on the left, search for “m”, then “activate” next to “Partner with monetization by showing ads in your videos”. However, YouTube only allows twelve (12) African countries to benefit from the monetization namely: Algeria, Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa, Tanzania, Tunisia, Uganda, Zimbabwe;
  • Step 5: A page stating “Your account is not activated for monetization. If you activate it, you will be able to monetize your videos. If any of your videos are approved for monetization, you become a YouTube partner. This gives you the opportunity to improve your skills and expand your audience. “. Click on the “activate my account” button;
  • Step 6: Accept the YouTube Monetization Agreement (this is the YouTube Partner Program).

# 3 Monetization itself …

Once activated, you will now see that the entry “monetization” will be available. Being part of the program does not mean that all videos are automatically monetized. Take the trouble, each time you upload a video, to verify that monetization is turned on, because it can be turned off. All of this is done in the Video Manager, located in YouTube Studio. To monetize multiple videos:

  • Step 1: go to YouTube Studio;
  • Step 2: select “videos” from the left menu;
  • Step 3: check the gray box to the left of the thumbnail of all the videos to monetize;
  • Step 4: in the drop-down menu, click on “modify” in the black bar above the list of your videos, then click on “monetization”;
  • Step 6: click on “activate” in the “monetization” drop-down menu, then on “modification options”;Step 7: click on “edit videos”, check the box next to “I understand the implications of this operation”, then click “edit videos”.

So concretely …

African YouTubers make money on YouTube in several ways:


In order to reach their potential customers, some companies are using YouTube ads. These ads can be visible before, during or after the broadcast of the youtuber’s video. Advertisers pay YouTube to run their ads. However, African publishers are only paid after 30 seconds viewing the ad. Or when the user decides to interact with it: click on a call to action overlay, a banner or file associated with a video.

Product placement

In this case, African YouTubers directly or indirectly promote products or brands by including them in their videos. This is of course done in exchange for remuneration. The goal is to be as subtle as possible. This assertion by American journalist Steuart Britt sums it up very well: “To trade without advertising is like glancing at a woman in the dark. You know what you are doing, but no one else knows. ”

Mention of brands

With a view to making themselves better known, some African brands sometimes approach African youtubers so that the latter recommend their products or brands to their subscribers. Youtubers can also display certain brands or place objects of the latter in the decor of their videos.

Video sponsorship

In order to improve their image or notoriety, the brands are also approaching African youtubers with a view to becoming their sponsors. Thus financing the production of their videos or other projects. In exchange for this, they see their logo affixed to their videos or their products or services highlighted.

YouTube Affiliate

It consists of a partnership between a company and a YouTuber. The latter receives links (promotional codes) allowing its subscribers to purchase products from said company. In return, the YouTuber receives commissions of up to 10% depending on the category of the product he is promoting and its price. YouTube Affiliate Videos also include:

  • Test videos: these are videos in which the YouTuber gives his opinion on a product he has tried. The latter does not always receive money, but receives free and exclusive products that are useful in everyday life.
  • Unboxing videos: these are videos during which YouTubers unbox a product offered by a company or purchased. The latter are likened to company ambassadors. The remuneration is done either through the products or is pecuniary. Most of the time, unboxing precedes testing the product.
    The purpose of these videos is obviously to facilitate and guide subscribers’ purchasing choices by presenting the products and their benefits.

Sales of their products or services

Some African youtubers offer their products or services to their subscribers. The links to buy them are still in description. The video in which the product or service is featured is not necessarily a video in which they feature it. Take the example of a YouTuber who presents the process for getting hair care. At the end of the video, she will specify that the product can be purchased via the link in the description. In short, the video represents “the bait” in the form of a gift (a piece of advice offered).

YouTube is a great platform for making money online, even for Africans. African content editors have understood this and use a thousand and one tricks to be the most impactful on the latter; and this, in order to be noticed by Internet users but also advertisers. However, it is not always the brands that come to YouTubers. It can happen that the opposite is true.

About The Author

CEO AfrikaTech

Comme beaucoup de personnes j’ai connu l’Afrique à travers des stéréotypes : l’Afrique est pauvre, il y a la guerre, famine… Je suis devenu entrepreneur pour briser ces clichés et participer à la construction du continent. J’ai lancé plusieurs entreprises dont Kareea (Formation et développement web), Tutorys (Plate-forme de e-learning), AfrikanFunding (Plate-forme de crowdfunding). Après un échec sur ma startup Tutorys, à cause d’une mauvaise exécution Business, un manque de réseau, pas de mentor, je suis parti 6 mois en immersion dans l’écosystème Tech au Sénégal. J’ai rencontré de nombreux entrepreneurs passionnés, talentueux et déterminés. A mon retour sur Paris je décide de raconter leur histoire en créant le média AfrikaTech. L'objectif est de soutenir les entrepreneurs qui se battent quotidiennement en Afrique en leur offrant la visibilité, les connaissances, le réseautage et les capitaux nécessaires pour réussir. L'Afrique de demain se construit aujourd'hui ensemble. Rejoignez-nous ! LinkedIn:

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