Do YouTubers Charge for Collabs?

The question of do YouTubers charge for collabs is one that be answered very simply or in great detail. In the interests of getting to the point; do YouTubers charge for collabs? Yes. It definitely happens. In the interests of answering the question more accurately, however, it should be noted that not all YouTubers charge for collabs, and the true answer to the question is “it depends”.

Like a good deal of behaviour on YouTube, paying for collabs happens. It even happens with enough regularity that there are services dedicated to helping small YouTubers find relevant larger YouTubers who, for a little cash, will do a collab with them.

Like some kind of dating website only with a much stronger scent of capitalism. That being said, it does not automatically follow that if you want to do a collab with a YouTuber, you will have to pay them.

Every YouTuber is different, and you may find that the YouTuber you are considering approaching will not do collabs under any circumstances (or will not do a collab with you under any circumstances), or that they will happily do a collab for free, or anything in between. The spectrum of expectation is broad enough that we can confidently say for any expected response, there is a YouTuber out there who will respond that way.

So, if you’re interested in learning more, let’s dive a little deeper!

What are “Collabs”?

Short for collaboration, a collab is the name given to the process when multiple YouTubers team up to make a video—or series of videos—together. This can be for no other reason than content creators liking each other and wanting to work together, but it often has more practical connotations. We’ll get into some of the more common reasons why collabs happen in the next section, but first…

Do YouTubers Charge for Collabs? 1

Examples of Collab Videos

Let’s take a look at some types of collab videos you might encounter on YouTube, or that you might look to create yourself.

General Team Up

This is the most common type of collab you might come across, and it is one that spans many different genres and niches. In this type of collab, two or more come together to do something all at once.

It could be play a multiplayer video game, play a musical number, take on a DIY project, or really anything where all the participants can come together to make the video with each other.

Specialised Collabs

In this type of collab, two channels with the same or similar niches will team partner up, but each make their own videos. The idea here is that each participant of the collab will tackle a different part of the subject of matter, and all the videos that are part of the collab will be plugged by the other videos.

This could be educational content where two YouTubers each tackle different but complimentary topics, or a construction project where each participant handles a different part of the job.

Challenge Collabs

Another popular type of collab is the challenge collab, where the participants face off against each other to do a specific thing. For game development YouTube, this could be something like “make a game in 24 hours”. For music YouTube, it might be something similar like “make a song in 2 hours”.

Why Do YouTubers Collab?

There are several reasons why a YouTuber might choose to do a collab, and, surprisingly, they do not have anything to with money most of the time. It is often the case that the reasons for doing the collab are different for each participant, so let’s take a look at those reasons.


The single biggest reasons a smaller YouTuber would want to collab with a larger YouTuber is the exposure they will gain. Having their channel put in front of the eyes of a much bigger audience can provide a significant boost to their channel’s growth, as long their content is good, of course.

Naturally, this reason for collabing is a one way street in that the bigger YouTuber will not gain much—if any—exposure from appearing with the smaller YouTuber. That does not mean there is nothing in it at all for the larger YouTuber, however.


The biggest benefit a bigger YouTuber will get out of doing a collab with a smaller YouTuber is the positive PR from being seen helping out smaller YouTubers. YouTubers who are happy to help the little guys, so to speak, are often more liked among viewers, and YouTubers with loyal audiences have a much better chance of being around for a long time to come.

Just Because

It’s worth noting that just because there is the potential for good PR from a collab, it doesn’t necessarily mean that that’s why the bigger YouTuber is doing it. Some big YouTubers are genuinely just nice people, and are happy to help out the little guys regardless of whether there is anything in it for them.

Do YouTubers Charge for Collabs? 2


You often see YouTubers collabing with other YouTubers of a similar stature to themselves, but there is no rule that says YouTubers can only fraternise with similarly-sized YouTubers.

If YouTubers are friends, they might decide to collab just for the opportunity to work together, regardless of whether any or all of them get anything out of it.

A Good Cause

It has been known for YouTubers to come together to collab on something just because they believe in the thing they are collabing about.

This might be something noble, like planting trees, or something like preventing a faceless corporation from taking the top spot on YouTubers most-subscribed list.


And finally we get to the reason that spawned this post in the first places. We don’t have any numbers on the amount of YouTube collabs that go on where money exchanges hands, but anecdotally, it doesn’t appear to be anywhere near a majority.

Still, it happens enough that entire services have appeared to facilitate these transactions, helping smaller YouTubers find a suitable larger YouTuber to propose a collab with, and enabling that larger YouTuber to get paid for it.

The Ethics of Paid Collaborations

The ethical side of this topic is very much a grey area due to the subjective nature of whether you think it is acceptable. We’re not going to pass judgement here, because this blog is about growing and succeeding on YouTube, and paying for collabs is one tool you can use to achieve those goals.

What we will say is that, even the general consensus was that paid collabs are morally questionable, they do not break any of YouTube’s terms of service, and they do not negatively affect other channels, so any argument against them would be one of preference.

Tips for Collabing

To finish off the post, we thought we’d cover a few tips to help you on your way to your next collab video.

Try to be Realistic

There is an argument to be made that you should aim high, and that is certainly one strategy to achieve success. This piece of advice is more for your own mental well-being than it is to do with any external factors.

Sure, if you have a channel with 2,000 subscribers and you propose a collab with a channel that has 12 million subscribers, you’ll probably get ignored—or at least turned down. But this rejection in and of itself is not damaging (unless you keep trying with the same YouTuber but more on that shortly), it is the effect on your state of mind from being repeatedly told no that we are warning against.

No Means No

If you do decide to reach for the stars when looking for a collab—or for any collab, for that matter—don’t be the person that refuses to take no for an answer.

You may not agree with another YouTuber’s reason for not collabing with you. Maybe you were ignored or brushed off without a reason.

The important thing to remember is that no matter how rude or mistaken you think they might have been, it’s their channel, and they get to decide what they do with it.

Work on Your Tone

There is a balance to strike when approaching a YouTuber for a collab, and it is somewhere between being too desperate and being too cocky. If you sound overly needy, you could put the YouTuber off before they even get started. Similarly, if you come off very cocky and full of yourself—especially if you’re the smaller YouTuber—you won’t make a very good impression on them.

Stay Relevant

When it comes to finding a YouTuber to collab with, size isn’t everything. The idea of collabing with a bigger YouTuber is to get exposure, but if the people you are being exposed to are not interested in the type of content you make, you are not likely to pick up many new viewers from the collab. For the most part, the bigger channel will likely moderate this themselves, since they will probably be more experienced with this kind of thing. But it doesn’t hurt to make sure you get experienced as well!

Top 5 Tools To Get You Started on YouTube

Very quickly before you go here are 5 amazing tools I have used every day to grow my YouTube channel from 0 to 30K subscribers in the last 12 months that I could not live without.

1. VidIQ helps boost my views and get found in search

I almost exclusively switched to VidIQ from a rival in 2020.

Within 12 months I tripled the size of my channel and very quickly learnt the power of thumbnails, click through rate and proper search optimization. Best of all, they are FREE!

2. Adobe Creative Suite helps me craft amazing looking thumbnails and eye-catching videos

I have been making youtube videos on and off since 2013.

When I first started I threw things together in Window Movie Maker, cringed at how it looked but thought “that’s the best I can do so it’ll have to do”.

Big mistake!

I soon realized the move time you put into your editing and the more engaging your thumbnails are the more views you will get and the more people will trust you enough to subscribe.

That is why I took the plunge and invested in my editing and design process with Adobe Creative Suite. They offer a WIDE range of tools to help make amazing videos, simple to use tools for overlays, graphics, one click tools to fix your audio and the very powerful Photoshop graphics program to make eye-catching thumbnails.

Best of all you can get a free trial for 30 days on their website, a discount if you are a student and if you are a regular human being it starts from as little as £9 per month if you want to commit to a plan.

3. helps people read my videos

You can’t always listen to a video.

Maybe you’re on a bus, a train or sat in a living room with a 5 year old singing baby shark on loop… for HOURS. Or, you are trying to make as little noise as possible while your new born is FINALLY sleeping.

This is where Rev can help you or your audience consume your content on the go, in silence or in a language not native to the video. can help you translate your videos, transcribe your videos, add subtitles and even convert those subtitles into other languages – all from just $1.50 per minute.

A GREAT way to find an audience and keep them hooked no matter where they are watching your content.

4. PlaceIT can help you STAND OUT on YouTube

I SUCK at making anything flashy or arty.

I have every intention in the world to make something that looks cool but im about as artistic as a dropped ice-cream cone on the web windy day.

That is why I could not live on YouTube without someone like PlaceIT. They offer custom YouTube Banners, Avatars, YouTube Video Intros and YouTube End Screen Templates that are easy to edit with simple click, upload wizard to help you make amazing professional graphics in minutes.

Best of all, some of their templates are FREE! or you can pay a small fee if you want to go for their slightly more premium designs (pst – I always used the free ones).

5. StoryBlocks helps me add amazing video b-roll cutaways

I mainly make tutorials and talking head videos.

And in this modern world this can be a little boring if you don’t see something funky every once in a while.

I try with overlays, jump cuts and being funny but my secret weapon is b-roll overlay content.

I can talk about skydiving, food, money, kids, cats – ANYTHING I WANT – with a quick search on the StoryBlocks website I can find a great looking clip to overlay on my videos, keeping them entertained and watching for longer.

They have a wide library of videos, graphics, images and even a video maker tool and it wont break the bank with plans starting from as little as £8.25 ($9) per month.


How to Collaborate On YouTube (Even During The Covid Pandemic)

Collaborations are responsible for some of the best things ever — fish and chips, cheese and wine, even Tango and Cash (ask your dad).

Two complimentary things working together are often better than the sum of their parts. Collaborating with other creators on content for your channel is a great way to grow your subscriber and view count by tapping into the other creator’s audience.

One of the most useful collaboration types is meeting up with another YouTuber in person and recording content together. But, currently, that’s a no-go, as Covid lockdowns are keeping us all home-alone.

Fortunately, you can still collaborate with other YouTubers, and this article sets out all you need to know about how to collaborating with other creators. The best people to approach and how to approach them. Plus, I’ll also cover the different types of collaboration you could choose to do.

Here we go.

Who Should You Collaborate With? (Finding the Right Creator)

It may be tempting to think, ‘I have a gaming channel. I wonder if PewDiePie is up for a collaboration?’

Not gonna happen.

Your ideal collaborator is someone who has a similar-sized audience to you. Why? It’s an unfair transaction otherwise. Both sides of the collaboration are looking to gain a bump in subscribers and traffic from the deal. If one channel has a vastly larger subscriber base, then why would they bother collaborating?

Also, along with finding a creator with a similar-sized channel, their niche should be one that meshes well with your content. You need to find a topic mix that makes sense.

For example, my channel is in the YouTube education niche, which is a topic that mixes nicely with many other subjects. I can collaborate with a gaming channel because I can teach the other collaborator’s audience how to grow their own gaming channel.

Similarly, the gamer can come onto my channel and talk about the three main lessons they learned from launching a YouTube channel. The topics work well together – they have synergy.

If your videos are all about cooking and your friend has a channel about dogs, this is not a happy topic mix.

Take a little time to think about the kind of niches that would blend well with your channel, and think about how a collaboration would benefit you and your audience?

How To Find Collaborators

The easiest type of collaboration is the ones you set up with your friends. These could be real-life friends or be people you’ve met on YouTube and built up a rapport with in the comments section.

In this case, approaching them to suggest a collaboration should be easy. You can brainstorm content ideas together, and there should be less pressure on getting the collaboration right the first time.

As I mentioned in the previous section, the collaboration should make sense from a niche perspective. If none of your friend’s channels mix well with yours, you will have to approach some content creators you haven’t previously had contact with.

The first place to look for potential collaborators is in your subscriber list. From Your Channel dashboard on YouTube, select the list of people who subscribe to your content. You can order your subscriber list by their subscriber count to find people who have a similar-sized channel to you.

It makes sense to try this first. If someone has subscribed to your channel, they like your content already, so organising a collaboration should be easier.

Start by checking out your existing subscribers’ channel pages to see if there are any that might make a good match for collaboration. If you have no luck with your current subscriber base, then you need to hunt down people to work with.

You can search on YouTube or use a third-party tool like vidIQ, which has features to help you track down your competition. But in this situation, your competitors could become your collaboration partner. Just remember to look for channels that have a similar subscriber count to you.

Don’t overshoot and try to set up a collaboration with a much larger channel – it looks like begging.

Contacting Potential Collaborators

You’ve hopefully now identified several channels you want to collaborate with. You will need a good-sized list because finding a collaborator is like being at the Junior disco at school. You are going to have to ask lots of people to dance with you before one says yes!

Next, you’ll need to get a list of contact details for the channels you want to approach. You should also message the person with who you want to collaborate directly. It doesn’t necessarily have to be their email address – a DM via social media is OK – but it’s not the best idea to spam their video comment section.

Consider this comment appearing in your comment feed: ‘dude, nice channel, we should collaborate!’ This approach is unprofessional; they didn’t even take the time to find out your name!

Messages like these most often come from someone who only wants the exposure to your audience because you likely have more subscribers. So, take the time to find out the name and contact details of the channels you want to work with.

Look first in the about section of their YouTube channel page. In the details section, there is a place to enter a business email address.

If they don’t have an email listed, you can usually find contact details for people on other social media sites.

What to Say in Your Pitch to Potential Collaborators

Your email or direct message to a potential collaborator is, in fact, a mini-sales letter. You need to grab their attention, then persuade with your words that you are worthy of their time and attention. Then finish with a call to action, such as asking them to reply to your message.

Just because you reach out to someone doesn’t mean they are going to say yes. They may be in the middle of a pre-planned series of videos or have tried collaborations before, and it didn’t go so well.

Remember, a good collaboration is the right blend of two channels that will benefit both people’s goals. So even if you think that a particular creator is perfect for you, you may need to persuade them that you are also ideal for them.

Start your email pitch by using their name. Using ‘Hey dude’ or some other impersonal greeting might seem friendly. But people respond better when you use their first name. You are also showing them some respect that you took the time to find out their real name.

Keeping your pitch short is also a way to show potential collaborators respect. It shows that you acknowledge their time is valuable, and they won’t want to read a long 1000 word email.

After you’ve greeted them by name, next mention one of their videos and why you liked it. Everyone likes a little flattery, so if you start with some praise, they will likely continue reading the rest of the pitch.

Now it’s time to get to the purpose of your message. Let them know you want to collaborate and mention two or three ideas of videos you could create together. You don’t need lots of detail, just some good enough ideas to spark a conversation.

This is the ultimate aim of any pitch message you send – getting a response and a chance to talk further.

Here’s an example of the kind of message you could send;

You will likely need to send out a few collaboration pitch emails before you get a response, so don’t be disheartened if your first few messages don’t get any – it’s a numbers game.

Once you find a partner to collaborate with, you next need to decide what type of collaboration to do. Let’s take a look at the different collaboration types next.

The Different Types of YouTube Collaboration

With the pandemic stopping you from meeting up with other YouTubers to record a collaboration, what different types of collaboration can you do? Here are four for you to think about.

The Shoutout YouTube Collaboration

This kind of collaboration is the perfect one to start with. It dips your toe in collaboration waters and is the first level of YouTube collaboration.

Giving a shoutout is a simple as mentioning another channel during one of your own videos. Say why you like the creator’s content and why you think your audience should head over to their channel.

Your collaboration partner will return the favour, and both of you should hopefully see a bump in subscribers and a spike in video watch-time.

I did a shoutout with Desiree Martinez. She has a channel all about content marketing that compliments my YouTube education channel nicely. As you can see below, I inserted an image from her into my video. I also linked to her channel homepage in the video description.

When you organise a shoutout, agree on up front where you will place the shoutout segment in your video. Positioning a shoutout near the start of a video is more valuable than ones that appear near the end.

Videos viewership drops as the video goes on. So an agreed shoutout near the start of your video should mean more viewers get to see it.

Video Clip Swap Collaboration

The video clip swap collaboration is a natural progression if you and your collaborator have found the shoutout collaboration useful. This type of collaboration involves you recording a clip and inserting it into each other’s video.

You might choose this one for when you want to cover a topic in one of your videos that your collaborator has more experience in. For example, let’s assume I’m going to do a clip swap collaboration with Desiree Martinez.

I could film a segment for her audience about video content marketing. At the same time, she could film a clip about promoting a YouTube channel via Facebook. In this situation, both of us are playing to our strengths, and the audience should find a fresh face helpful.

Here’s an example from Brian G Johnson’s channel with someone he often collaborates with; his friend Nick Nimmin. In the video shown below about growing a YouTube channel, Nick Nimmin, with his 700k subscribers, can offer his valuable expertise. So Nick recorded a short clip for Brian to insert into his video.

The Channel Swap Collaboration

This type of collaboration is a bit like a more extended version of the clip swap. This time, though, your collaboration partner takes over most of a video.

You will want to record a short intro/outro to sandwich their clip and let your audience know what’s going on, but in the main, your collaborator takes over.

When you channel swap with someone, they can bring you in as the guest star to talk about your expertise. Alternatively, you can also record content on the topic of the other person’s channel but from your perspective.

I did a channel swap a while ago with Sarah Sunbeams. Sarah has a Booktube channel, so her audience is more interested in all things bookish rather than my usual content of YouTube education.

I’m a big fan of listening to audiobooks, so I took over her channel to talk about my thoughts on all things Amazon Audible. Sarah recorded a video in return for my channel that was all about launching a Booktube channel.

We both got to talk about each other’s specialties and get our faces in front of a new audience.

The Pandemic Option

With the pandemic preventing close contact, you can’t appear on camera sat next to a collaboration partner.

One alternative you might try if you want to appear on the screen at the same time is to record a video call. Nearly everyone must have had a Zoom or Skype video chat in the last few months.

Why not try recording a Zoom meeting with a collaborator? There is a feature in Zoom to record a video call, though you may want to use proper screen recording software to have more control over the end product.

OBS Studio is free screen recording software that works on either Mac or Windows. Why not set up your video camera to shoot you from a different angle simultaneously so that you can edit it into your video later, as well?


The Covid pandemic shouldn’t stop you from collaborating on YouTube just because you can’t physically meet up with another YouTuber. Now that many people are either working or learning from home, technology makes it easy to collaborate with anyone anywhere in the world.

When you look for a collaboration partner, make sure to choose one that will compliment your channel’s niche. Search your current subscribers to see if they have a similar-sized channel that could have collaboration potential.

But, you should try to find a few possibles, because not everyone will want to collaborate – it’s about finding the right people at the right time.

When you have your list, send out a pitch message. Greet them by name, keep it short, and say something nice about their channel.

When you find a collaborator, decide which type of collaboration to do. It’s OK to start small with a shoutout or two, and later on, work your way up to a clip or even full channel swap. Good luck.




How To Collaborate on YouTube – How To Become A YouTuber // Collaborations on YouTube are a sure fire way to grow your channel and make some new friends, but how do you collaborate on Youtube? What are collaboration videos? And what type of youtube collaboration videos could I make?


#Collab #Collaboration YouTubeTips #YouTubeTutorials #Tutorials #YouTube #FAQs #YouTuberProblems #StartCreating #HowTo #AlanSpicer #Education #Learning #Help #YouTubeCertifed



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