The man known as CGP has offered his take on CPMs. In his latest video, YouTube star CGP Grey dove into the concept of pre-roll ads on YouTube, and his explanation serves as a good introduction for anyone curious about monetizing his or her videos.

As is typical of his work, CGP Grey explains pre-rolls through an easy-to-digest monologue accompanied by crudely animated visual aids. His video covers the basics of YouTube ad buying, from the “auction” format it uses to the role of demographics to the resulting CPMs (revenue per 1000 ad impressions) that are generated. A pair of footnotes add depth to his presentation by discussing the various ways to cite CPM statistics and detailing how YouTube Red fits into the equation.

Grey’s ad explanation is only as detailed as a four-and-a-half-minute video can be, and it does not go into the other avenues — such as merchandising, brand deals, and live events — through which YouTube careerists make their money. Even so, it’s a good first step into a confusing world, and if someone asks you for a crash course on how YouTube monetization works, you could do a lot worse than sending them Grey’s way.

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