In this case study, we will look at the faceless YouTube channel called Simply Aviation. We will see what they do and how they make money on YouTube.
What Does Simply Aviation Do?
Simply Aviation is in the airplane or and travel niche but they have carved out a unique place for themselves because what they do is a bit different.
There are several faceless YouTube channels in the airplane niche that do videos about the history of planes or show information about planes. However, their channel does what they call “Tripreports”.
They’re whole goal is to show their viewers what it’s like to fly with a certain airline. They present the entire experience, from arrival at the airport through check-in, boarding, the cabin, and in-flight service, and finally arrival at the destination.
What’s great about their videos is they show the whole experience from beginning to end. Each video starts with the light itinerary and shows the map of their flight. They then show boarding, cabin and seat, taxi and take off, entertainment, dinner service, inflight, breakfast service, approach and landing as well as deboarding.
To date, Simply Aviation has flown 224 different airlines so they have made this a way of life for themselves. This was done over a period of 10 years. With around 504 videos, this means they post about 50 videos per year or about 1 per week.
How Simply Aviation Makes Their Videos
Simply Aviation uses certain recording devices to make their videos. According to their website they use the DJI Osmo Pocket and the GoPro 7&8 to record their Tripreports. They also use the Canon G7X Mark II for other types of videos.
If they are going to do an interview or do a voice over for the videos, they use the RØDE smartLav+ mic.
To edit their videos Simply Aviation uses Adobe Creative Cloud.
How Much Does Simply Aviation Make?
At the time of this writing Simply Aviation has over 504,000 subscribers and over 137 million video views. They also have 11 videos over 1million views and several others over 2 million up to 6 million views. This shows that their videos are being seen by a lot of people.
The thing that is done right with their videos is that almost all of them are longer than 10 minutes which is best for optimizing ad revenue. It’s better to have videos over 8 minutes because it allows you to place more ad slots which means more money can be made.
According to Social Blade, the Simply Aviation channel makes up to $6,700 per month in revenue. This is ad revenue only but serves as an estimate of what the channel may be making and uses an average CPM of $4.00.
Since a lot of the ads that play on their channel are travel related, they’re probably making more than this because the CPM for travel related ads is higher than the average. Since many of their ads are about travel, the CPM could be as high as $19. With 1.6 million views a month, their revenue could be as high as $30,000 per month!
What Can Simply Aviation Do Better?
While the Simply Aviation channel has done quite well, it appears they could be leaving a lot of money on the table. It seems they are only monetizing their channel with ad revenue which means they’re missing out on an amazing opportunity to make so much more.
Since their channel and videos are travel related, their viewers are most likely people looking to travel on a particular airline and take a trip. What Simply Aviation could do is to sign up for affiliate programs with Expedia.com, Hotels.com, Booking.com, travelpayouts.com, CheapOAir.com, Travelocity and others. Once they are part of these affiliate programs they could then receive a percentage of each ticket or booking made through their affiliate links. This is affiliate marketing.
To do this they would simply place these links in the description of their videos.
For example, their video on TRIPREPORT | Swiss (ECONOMY) | Airbus A220-100 | Paris CDG – Zurich – Vienna features the whole flight from Zurich to Vienna. They could then place affiliate links in the description of this video so people could book this same flight and trip. They would then make a commission on the booking.
They could do this for flight bookings as well as hotel bookings, anything travel related.
Another way Simply Aviation could monetize their channel is they could form partnerships with airlines and get paid to do videos of a particular airline or plane. They would get paid to place the video on their channel as a way to promote an airline or particular trip.
Another way Simply Aviation can monetize their videos is to promote the equipment and gear they use to make their videos.
There are going to be viewers that want to make similar videos and Simply Aviation could link to the gear they use in the description of their videos. By using the Amazon affiliate program or others, they can get paid a commission on the sale of all of the items that sell through their links.
How To Create A Channel Like Simply Aviation
If you’re someone who loves to travel and fly, then this could be the type of channel you would enjoy creating.
This is a great way to make money on YouTube without showing your face and without making videos with yourself in them.
To build a faceless YouTube channel like this you first need to get the equipment you will need to record every aspect of your flights. We already covered the gear used by Simply Aviation to make their videos but we will show it again here:
You can use this same gear if you wish.
However, it’s not necessary to use the same equipment. You can actually use a high quality phone that does HD recording. You would need a gimbal handheld stabilizer to keep the video stabilized as you walk. The DJI Osmo Mobile is a good choice but there are many others.
You could talk in these videos if you wished to describe what is happening on screen. Or you could do what Simply Aviation has done and used no voice in the videos. They did this (according to their website) so that viewers could feel like they were on the flight. It gives viewers a better experience to just hear the sounds of the trip.
Creating a channel like this would require you to travel. This means you need to free up this time to actually take these trips.
You would also need to pay for these flights. This would not be a problem once you have grown your channel to where it covers all of your costs but up front, you would need to invest money in the cost of travel.
According to the Simply Aviation website, to help with the cost of travel they try to stay in budget hotels, use public transit to and from airports, and save a lot of money on plane tickets.
They’re also fairly flexible with flight schedules and days, preferring to go during the off-season and in Economy Class. To keep our travel expenditures low, we use practically all accessible OTAs and airfare search engines, as well as points and credit cards.
This type of faceless YouTube channel has great potential and could be a lot of fun to create especially if you love to travel.
If you would like to learn more about creating a YouTube channel that actually makes money, please take our YouTube training to help you learn how to do this.