Youtube "AD Rev"-ing your music - is it worth it?



I haven’t been a part of this community since they started implementing the optional “ad-rev” program. I was skeptical about it because I’m not sure if this will scare away potential buyers.

In your experience, does making your music “ad-rev” enhance sales or decrease sales (or stay the same), AND do those decreased sales usually mean more in back-end royalties from Youtube?

Thanks much!


Stayed the same for me.


I’m considering implementing AdRev into my music. Do you think making the switch will annoy past customers and give me bad ratings?


Sales stay the same for me,and i discovered a lot of people that actually ripped my music or just used previews in their videos.
People that actually bought music and sent me proper license as a proof had no problem with it,it is a very simple process to remove copyright claims and i think people are starting to understand it,because there was some confusion in the beginning.
I always put “IMPORTANT FOR YOUTUBERS!” txt file in my zip archives that explains what should they do if they plan on using my music on YT videos.


Good question!I wonder why AJ top 3 sellers still don’t use AdRev?


I think with their number of licenses already sold it would be quite a shakeup for the Internet if they suddenly switched to using AdRev. Too much support to handle.


If they could see exactly how many people were blatantly stealing and using their music illegitimately and were able to see how much they’d earn from that, they’d join up in an instant. Would make their License sale earnings look like pocket change.

Things change quickly on the internet and people have to learn to adapt - authors and customers alike. For example, Google and Facebook are forever changing things with the functionality of their sites, and whilst there’s still an initial outcry from a vocal minority, the dust soon settles and people get on with the new way of working.

To answer the question is AdRev worth it? Yes, absolutely and as a matter of principle I wouldn’t have it any other way right now.


Haha, yeah, I would LOVE to see that AdRev statement. I think just about anyone would fall off their chair.

A quick YouTube search of Tim McMorris reveals unlicensed (fan videos just playing the music, watermarked, referral videos etc.) with 3.3 million views on the first two pages.

And those are only videos where they actually write out the name. On the first two pages. It’s likely that there are thousands of videos PER song that could generate ad revenue. We are talking $10-20k a month here, at the very least. Could be much more, but only one way to find out…

As a comparison, I find zero videos like this searching myself and I have a very decent AdRev statement each month… YouTube is so incredibly big it’s ridiculous what goes on there.

PinkZebra’s Larger Than Life has 2,548 sales here but you find 11,400 videos on YouTube… And likely many, many more that don’t write out the name.

Let’s be conservative and say that for every sale there are two unlicensed videos. That means 112,000 videos. Based on other AdRev stats that would translate into $30,000 per month. Just playing with the numbers here.

Tim McMorris - On Top of The World yields 17,500 results on YouTube. It has 3,185 sales. The numbers can be absolutely mind-blowing.


It is good to have it…My first payout was 2.5 $ and now it’s getting bigger and bigger.I reached 20$ and the money is always welcome.
I had no bad expiriance with customers.They all claimed their copyright and nobody just send me an email with any question.


I had my music registered through a library and they had no problems. I’ve since had the music moved to an account in my own name. Again, no problems. I think the issues seen a while back were due to Content ID being a newer situation. People are starting to understand it now and I don’t think it’s a big deal to buyers at this point. All you have to do is explain that the music is in Content ID and for the client to keep their license handy in case they post to YouTube. You can also ask them to give you their YouTube channel and you can have AdRev “whitelist” it in advance so they won’t get an infringement claim. They don’t get upset when they understand the situation. It’s when it comes out of the blue that they might get angry.

With good news out of the way, I do have an old horror story from a few years back involving Content ID. I had an agreement with a library that had a Content ID clause granting them the right to administer through AdRev. No problem and they split things with me. I was also working with a music supervisor who did not tell me that he registered my music with Content ID through a different administrative service and re-titled the songs. That fact that he didn’t tell me, means he didn’t plan on giving me any of the money. I only found out because I was hit with copyright violations of my own music on my own YouTube channel. At that time, the library did not ask if I had a YouTube channel to “whitelist”, so I was hit with TWO infringement warning on all the music, one from each administrator. Only one administrator is allowed, but the music supervisor was dishonest enough to sneak my stuff in under the wire. It was an easy fix for the library, not easy for the music supervisor. There was a “civil” argument where I had to remind him of who the copyright owner was and have him remove his claim so that the library could be the sole administrator. But… I think those days are over and I handle it myself now.


Yes, the big problem is when someone does it for you. YOU have to be the one in control or it could get ugly. I’ve heard it can now happen with SoundCloud too. Has anyone had experience with a distributor/sup registering with SoundCloud Content ID without your knowledge?


That’s a worry. Though aren’t there any ways of proving that you own the rights (that it’s your track)?


I started using AdRev last year. I have my both SoundCloud profiles linked and every time I upload song on SC I let AdRev know. Some buyers don’t want ads on their YouTube videos with my music, so they contact me. I usually ask them to give me the link of their video, which I submit on AdRev and in 24 hours the video is clear from ads. I haven’t had any unhappy customers so far and I do like my money from AdRev :smile:


Once signed up with Ad-Rev, is it possible to see how many illegal uses there are before hitting “go” and actually monetising the tracks?

Or is it a case of once the tracks are uploaded and fingerprinted you are live and Adrev will start claiming straight away?

I guess I don’t want to put out previous clients if the monetary rewards aren’t there!


All I can see on my AdRev page is the chart which shows which song made how much. I don’t see anything about legal/illegal use. I received my first payment after 6 months from registering. You also have choice to claim or unclaim video links, in case any of your clients don’t like ads. When AdRev has your songs, they start tracking. If you decide to delete a track you need to contact them (if I’m not wrong)


There is no tracking without monetizing. As soon as AdRev detects a match, it will issue a copyright notice and will start monetizing right away, though you won’t know about it until four months later.


I’m considering making all new tracks ADREV. What are the things I should be clear about communicating to customers to put in the item descriptions and accompanying “important for YouTube.txt” files?



I’m thinking about going with the Adrev. Is there recommended workflow to do that? Is it easier to try with just one item first?

What about youtube videos that illegally uses these items? Does youtube remove these videos or do I get the money from the ads?



What do you mean by easier? To see results I would carefully decide “yes” or “no”, and if yes, upload everything. It’ll take 3 months+ before you see any results anyway.

You get the ad revenue. That’s the whole point of AdRev.


I have over 1000 sales. Do I need to whitelist buyers videos manually?

Thank you for your answer.