|The number of YouTubers has been rising throughout the years because of its monetary gain through video ads and partnerships from brands. / Photo credits by Mirko Vitali via 123rf|
YouTubers have been making tons of money for the popular video-streaming platform in the past couple of years, and they too have cashed in on the windfall. No matter what their content is, YouTubers always find their way to their audiences. Once they do, the next step is to build that audience, and eventually—because authenticity is the highest currency in the business of being on YouTube—develop that fanbase that will stick with you through thick and thin.
Once YouTubers achieve that level of adoration from fans, it is assumed that it’s all smooth sailing from thereon. The truth is, it isn’t. Content still needs to be created and tailor-made for audiences all the time, and those who can keep up with that pressure are the ones who usually rise to the top.
Here are just a few of those YouTubers who have continued to draw in millions of views and subscribers, and how much each one is worth now.
Ryan Kaji, $22 million
Believe it or not, a 7-year-old is the highest-paid personality on YouTube to date. Boasting 18 million subscribers to his Ryan ToysReview channel, Ryan is a glowing spot in the YouTube-sphere. According to business news website Business Insider, Ryan’s ascent to the top began humbly when his parents decided to document his toy reviews in March 2015.
The 18 million subscribers may sound like a lot, but in the YouTube business, that’s not as large a following as other accounts on the platform but it’s definitely a significant help to Ryan’s family.
Jake Paul, $21.5 million
Despite the many problematic things he and his brother Logan are known for, Jake comes in second on this list. His older brother might have been in trouble earlier this year for the Aokigahara “Suicide Forest” video, but Jake is alive and well on the platform and forges on with his own content. He began on Vine and amassed a total of five million followers, which helped him easily transfer his stuff to YouTube for longer formats where he would release “daily vlogs and rap videos.”
Dude Perfect, $20 million
As has been said many times, no matter what type of content you produce and release on YouTube, you’ll always find your people; that’s just how vast the internet is now. So if you’re not into vlogs or one of those crazy, privileged white boys producing “shock value” content without the same elegant chaos that Eric Andre is able to exude, then maybe you just want to watch something cathartic and impressive. Look no further than Dude Perfect, a “five-man sports crew” that specializes “in feats of dexterity and intricate trick shots,” says Forbes, an American business magazine published bi-weekly that features original articles on finance, industry, investing, marketing topics, technology, communications, science, politics, and law.
DanTDM, $18.5 million
He is in the fourth spot now but British gamer Daniel Middleton was last year’s top earner with $16.5 million. As a gamer content creator, he’s grown his fanbase by specializing in Minecraft and committing to that content for six years. He also sells his own merch to his 20.7 million adoring fans and even gave them a little treat when he got cast in a role in the animated movie “Ralph Breaks the Internet” as eBoy, the eBay alert dialogue box personified.
|Controversial make-up vlogger Jeffree Star ranks fifth among highest-paid YouTubers. / Photo credits by DVSROSS via Flickr|
Jeffree Star, $18 million
His life is filled to the brim with controversies, scandals, and a wealth of conflicting opinions from those who either like or hate him. Nevertheless, make-up mogul Jeffree Star continues to make money and stay afloat in the beauty industry no matter what. His initial MySpace popularity has been the stepping stone he didn’t realize would eventually help him land 15.5 million subs on YouTube and counting.
Markiplier, $17.5 million
Another gamer who has made a name for himself is Mark Edward Fischbach, better known as Markiplier. According to a list in international fashion and entertainment magazine for women Cosmopolitan, Hawaiian native Markiplier was able to build his fanbase by “playing PS4 games online for his 22.4 million subscribers.” He’s also collaborated with other gamers on YouTube and continues to sign seven-figure deals with different brands. Markiplier also works closely with Jacksepticeye, with whom he launched a high-end athleisure line called “Cloak,” which is specifically made for gamers.
VanossGaming, $17 million
With his animated content, Canadian gamer Evan Fong has made a name for himself with the unique packaging of his content as VanossGaming. His appeal is that his gaming content “stands out for its unique editing, original art, and comedic tone.” What’s more, he has also built quite a mystery around him by rarely appearing on camera.
Jacksepticeye, $16 million
According to Business Insider, Sean McLoughlin, aka Jacksepticeye, began to take off on YouTube when he became “one of the first YouTubers to be part of PewDiePie’s Disney-sponsored Revelmode network.” Although he’d dropped out of that project, he found himself back in Disney’s orbit once again and has now been signed on to “create original programming for Disney XD.”