In this digital age, YouTube has become everyone’s companion. Millions of YouTube videos are available for free, all you need is a smart phone, a tablet or a computer and of course, an Internet connection.
According to a YouTube blog, there over 2 billion logged-in users in the video site each month; this amounts to on-third of the Internet. And every day, people watch over a billion hours of video and generate billions of views.
And with the pandemic keeping us all from going to cinemas or watching outdoor concerts, we’ve all resorted the site for easy, free and fast entertainment.
It’s no surprise, either, that millions of users have also started their own YouTube channels, attracting global viewers with themes ranging from game reviews, travel, technology, religious and many others. And many YouTubers, as what they’re commonly called, earn hundreds of dollars per month for videos that go viral.
Just recently, Forbes published its list of highest-paid YouTube personalities in 2020. Forbes listed down ten of the wealthiest digital influencers. But for an easy read, here are the five highest-paid in the list.
1. Ryan’s World (Ryan Kaji)
Earnings: 29.5 million
Views: 12.2 billion
Subscribers: 41.7 million
Who would have thought a nine-year-old can earn millions? Ryan Kaji, who started making videos in 2015, is a real deal. In November, he became the first YouTuber to be featured in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade with a float based on his superhero alter ego. Kaji’s videos of DIY science experiments, family storytime, skits and reviews of now toys have easily captured the attention of children worldwide. The bulk of his business comes from Ryan’s World branded toys and clothing, including Marks & Spencer pyjamas. He also signed an undisclosed deal for his own TV series on Nickelodeon.
2. Mr. Beast (Jimmy Donaldson)
Earnings: $24 million
Views: 3 billion
Subscribers 47.8 million
Considered the site’s biggest star ever, with nearly 50 million susbcribers, Donaldson uploads videos filled with stunts and humor. In the last 12 months, he has frozen himself in ice, gone around a Ferris wheel 1,000 times and constructed the largest Lego tower. He has become popular among brands such as Microsoft, Electronic Arts and Honey. He recently launched a fastfood chain, MrBeast Burgers, across cities in the US. In a true Mr Beast way, Donaldson unveiled his new venture by giving away wads of money, brand new iPads and even a car.
3. Dude Perfect
Earnings: $23 million
Views: 2.77 billion
Subscribers: 57.5 million
A collaboration among “5 best buds just kickin’ it”, the channel contains fun videos of them playing lightsabers, Nerf Guns and paintballs. Their popular stunts have led to a national tour that grossed about $6 million and an accompanying documentary, Backstage Pass. In March, when the coronavirus first hit and professional sports were at a standstill, the group took to their YouTube channel to host the Quarantine Classic, competing against each other in three-point basketball shootouts and roller-chair hockey. The series of videos raised about $160,000 for the Red Cross and Feeding America.
4. Rhett and Link
Earnings: $20 million
Views: 1.9 billion
Subscribers: 41.8 million
One of the longest-running YouTube stars, Rhett and Link are an American comedy duo known for creating and hosting Good Mythical Morning on YouTube. The duo also acquired SMOSJ, a sketch comedy channel that has further propelled their stardom. But this channel isn’t just mainly about Rhett and Link. According to Forbes, their Mythical Entertainment company has 100 employees, who help in the production of the entertaining videos people have come to love.
5. Markiplier (Mark Fischbach)
Earnings: $19.5 million
Views: 3.1 billion
Subscribers: 27.8 million
Markiplier has been at it on YouTube for eight years, posting ultra-popular breakdowns of video games. They’ve drawn in nearly 28 million subscribers, eager to pour over his new videos and vast archive like his 31-part series examining 2013’s Cry of Fear. Aside from gaming videos, Markiplier also does original comedy sketches, animated parodies and other bits of entertainment. The 31-year-old YouTuber also launched a new YouTube channel, Unus Annus, with fellow gamer Ethan Nestor. The new channel had gained 4.5 million susbcribers before Mark and Ethan pulled the plug.