Billions of people use YouTube with hundreds of millions of viewers every month, there is a lot of demand for content and YouTubers do their best to provide entertaining, informational, fun, and interesting content, all for free.
This can be challenging for YouTubers to maintain, especially when they have a very small audience.
But as a viewer, there are many things you can do to help your favorite YouTubers out so they can keep creating more (and better) content for you to enjoy.
In this article, I’m going to share with you how to support your favorite YouTubers for free.
Let’s get straight to it.
10 Ways to support your favorite YouTuber
These 10 ways you can do from anywhere in the world and won’t cost you anything, but they can make a massive difference to your favorite YouTubers channel.
1. Subscribe to their YouTube Channel
Subscribing to your favorite YouTube channel is completely free and it can really help them for a number of reasons.
If the YouTube channel you want to support has less than 1,000 subscribers, your subscription can help them pass that milestone. This isn’t important just because it’s a nice round number, but because YouTubers need at least 1,000 subscribers to enable YouTube monetization and have ads play on their videos, which is one of the easiest ways for them to earn money from their YouTube channel.
(they also need at least 4,000 hours of watch-time in the last 12 months + have no copyright infringements + enable 2-step verification, to access YouTube Ads, but subscribing is a big start)
Having a certain number of subscribers also helps open certain YouTube features up to creators:
- At 100 subscribers YouTubers can claim a custom channel URL.
- With 500 subscribers YouTube channels can use community posts.
- At least 1,000 subscribers are the threshold for monetization.
- And with 10,000 subscribers, YouTubers can post stories and can display merchandise more visibly in their descriptions (known as the merch shelf).
In addition to features, more subscribers also help YouTubers attain brand deals, with some brands only looking for channels with more than a certain number of subscribers (all depending on the size and budget of the brand).
But if you subscribe, you might be able to help elevate your favorite YouTuber into consideration.
2. Watch videos completely
Watch-time and video engagement are very important factors for YouTube’s algorithm.
The higher the audience retention on a video, the better its chances are of being promoted by YouTube’s algorithm and being seen by more people. Which in turn, can help your favorite channels grow more quickly.
While new viewer retention is even more important, your continued watching can help it reach people as well.
And if the channel you want to support has less than 4,000 hours of watch-time in the last 12 months, you watching all the way to the end can help them reach that milestone in order to enable monetization on their channel.
3. Turn off AdBlock and don’t skip ads
This is one of the easiest ways you can support your favorite creators and actually directly impact their balance.
While watching a 30-second ad may only add a few cents to their bank balance at the end of the month, it really can add up and only costs you a few additional seconds of your time.
If you have an ad blocker enabled, you can disable it just for YouTube, or manually disable it for your favorite creators, and if their channel is monetized with ads already, then every ad you watch without skipping will directly support them.
4. Like the video and leave a comment
Video engagement is an important factor for the YouTube algorithm, not quite as important as viewer retention and click-through rate on thumbnails, but it is still a factor and doesn’t take much effort to do.
Liking the videos you watch from your favorite YouTubers show engagement and can be done with the click of a button. And leaving a comment can be as simple as letting them know you appreciate the video and really enjoyed it.
Best of all, unlike subscribing that can only be done once, liking and leaving a comment on a video can be done on all the videos that your favorite channels upload.
5. Share the video, even if it’s only privately
We’re going to stick with engagement and another way to engage with a video to support your favorite channel is to share a video.
This doesn’t have to be public to your Twitter feed or anything like that, you can even send it privately to a friend over a messenger like Whatsapp.
6. Use their affiliate links
Many YouTubers have affiliate links in their video descriptions linking to products and services that they use and recommend, or where shown in the video.
An affiliate link is a link that has a unique code in it. When someone clicks on the link and makes a purchase, the person who made the link gets a small percentage of what was paid for the product or service (this is how some YouTubers make money).
With these unique affiliate links, even if they don’t earn much by getting one sale, they still get a small amount from all people who used it.
Why this is a way for you to support your favorite YouTubers for free, is because, with affiliate links, you as the buyer don’t pay anything extra (sometimes you can even get a discount).
The commission that is paid to the YouTuber comes from the company where you purchased the product/service.
So, if you’re in the market for a new camera and your favorite YouTuber made a review on that particular model, you can support them by purchasing through the likely affiliate link in their video description instead of visiting the website of the seller directly.
You end up paying the same price (or less for certain products/services) for something you already were going to buy, while the YouTube channel owner receives a commission for leading you to the store from their video.
And this doesn’t have to be for expensive items or even items that YouTubers recommend directly in the video.
If you want to purchase anything on Amazon and your favorite YouTuber has affiliate links to Amazon, you can click on their affiliate link, and everything you purchase on Amazon in the next 24 hours they will earn a small commission.
Even toilet paper or pencil.
7. Provide constructive feedback
You can also support YouTube channels by leaving your opinion.
If you think the audio is too quiet, or they should record facing away from a window, or you found the previous background, introduction, storytelling method, etc. more engaging, let them know.
The important thing here is to provide something for them to work with, constructive feedback helps the creator improve their videos, and the best people to provide this feedback is the consumer of the product, i.e. you the viewer.
8. Let them know what you the viewer wants to see
Another way to provide your favorite YouTuber with help besides watching ads and using their affiliate links is to help with the creative side of things.
Let YouTubers know what content you as the viewer enjoy most and if you have any video ideas for what they could do next, don’t be afraid to let them know it.
One of the biggest mistakes small channels make is they think about what type of videos they want to make instead of what interests their viewers. Let them know your perspective and you could help them unlock their YouTube potential.
9. Join their email list
Not all YouTubers will have an email list, but if they do, make sure to sign up for it. This way you’ll receive their latest videos directly to your inbox, avoiding the possibility that YouTube doesn’t send you a notification as soon as they post (even if you have post notifications turned on).
Another way that joining the email list of your favorite YouTuber helps support them is by increasing their potential value to brand deals, sponsorships, and collaborations.
If a YouTuber has an email list of 10,000 people that fits the target market of a specific brand, and they happen to have a good email open rate, then the YouTuber can ask for more money than if they just had a YouTube channel.
And if the YouTube channel can earn more, they can put more time into creating more and/or better content for you the viewer.
10. Follow them on social media if they have other accounts
Another thing you can do is follow your favorite YouTubers on the other social platforms they are active on.
This again helps them land better brand deals and sponsorships and can help them get further reach on those respective channels, which they can then funnel that interest to their YouTube channel to help it grow.
Make sure to visit the YouTube channels about page or their video description to see what social media channels they are also active on.
If you search for them on a social platform directly and they aren’t active on it, you may find some scammers posing as them which can be risky.
Final thoughts on supporting your favorite YouTubers for free
There are many ways you can help your favorite creators on YouTube, from quick and easy clicks of a button, all the way to providing valuable constructive feedback so they make more engaging and useful videos.
Even if you don’t have the cash to become a channel member, donate to their Patreon, or buy the merch/product they’re selling, can still help them along on their YouTuber journey with the differents free methods we covered in this article.
While these things may seem quite insignificant individually, they can really start to add up and can make a world of difference.