Once upon a time YouTube was attracting over 1.8 billion users monthly but had few, if any profits.
Susan Wojcicki made money moves by monetizing several large initiatives. Those initiatives included a push into virtual reality, live programming and a $10 per month ad-free subscription launched October 2016.
For those of you not familiar with phenomenal Susan, she played an integral role in solidifying the Google-YouTube relationship in 2006. After breaking down the financial benefit to Google executives, a $1.65 billion purchase price was a no-brainer.
She was originally Google’s 16th employee. From there, she pivoted into launching Google’s advertising business, a digital cash cow, which generated $116 billion in 2018 and represented 85% of Googles total revenue, according to FourWeekMBA, a digital entrepreneur and business model source.
Now that we’ve established that she rocks, what did Susan do about turning a profit for YouTube?
Well, in a 2016 interview with Wall Street Journal, Susan mentioned “Right now we’re in a period of growth. We’re thinking about how we get to the next billion users and how we build additional monetization. We’re focused on setting ourselves up for the most successful long-term business. We’re reinvesting in the business to reach users and offer more monetization options and better service.”
Later, Tubefilter, a syndicated partner of Business Insider reported that YouTube will generate $3.36 billion net video revenue in 2018 in the US – a 17% uptick over the prior year.
Great job Susan.