Last year, Forbes made official a new set of stars that bank millions from showcasing their talents on YouTube, and this year, the revised list shows that they are earning even more by the year with some doubling their previous paycheck. So, if you’ve been trying for so long to get a pay raise from your boss, maybe it’s time you reconsider your career. All you need is a YouTube account and most importantly, a unique ability that can get millions to hit the subscribe button on your channel and voilà!, you may soon become a millionaire. You wouldn’t even be the first to quit your job to focus on vlogging as many of these stars did same after earning lesser paychecks than they desired. They include make-up gurus, pranksters, comedians, and gamers.
Joining this year’s list of the top ten highest-paid YouTube vloggers in the world is expensive stunts specialist and humorist, MrBeast. Another newcomer is Blippi who creates educational content for kids. The usual suspects, big names such as Dude Perfect and Rhett and Link, are also not left out as these 10 channels grossed a combined $211 million pretax, a 30% surge from last year. These stars monetized their YouTube fame via endorsement deals, selling their own merchandise and national tours. Even though the covid-19 pandemic threatened to ruin their party, the fact that many people were stuck at home with nothing to do meant that great numbers tuned into YouTube to keep themselves from going crazy.
Top 10 Highest Paid YouTube Vloggers Right Now
Bringing up the rear on the list of the ten highest-paid YouTube vloggers for the year under review is controversial make-up guru, Jeffree Star. Real name, Jeffrey Lynn Steininger, the American personality has tasted success far beyond his YouTube channel. He has a lucrative make-up company, known as Jeffree Star Cosmetics, which has unveiled many popular collections of eye shadows, palettes, lip balms and the likes. He also scored a music deal with Akon’s Konvict Music back in the day. Star’s success has however been threatened by his own actions as he has been involved in allegations of sexual assault.
Dobrik is, without doubt, one of the biggest stars that YouTube has produced. That status has seen him being dubbed the “Jimmy Fallon of the Gen Z” and such high praise does not come empty-handed. The Slovakian personality has a thriving merchandise line and can also count on big corporate sponsors such as EA. Beyond YouTube, Dobrik has also collaborated with the likes of Nickelodeon and Discovery Channel.
Producing quality kids’ content on YouTube is almost guaranteed to make one a big hit on the platform and one more proof of this fact is Blippi. Real name, Stevin John, this former American Airforce serviceman decided to start creating worthwhile online videos after struggling to find some for his three-year-old nephew. This was in 2014 and years down the line, his goofy and friendly creation, which teaches kids colours, letters and numerals, now has billions of views across the globe. The obligatory merch line, featuring his signature cap and glasses, have followed, and this has helped Blippi become one of the highest-paid YouTube vloggers in the world.
Only one female makes it to the list of the 10 highest-paid YouTube vloggers for the year under review and it is the little Russian girl named Nastya. Just like Blippi, Nastya’s content is targeted at kids and is filled with colourful pictures of toy unboxings, visits to amusement parks as well as other fun activities that keep children occupied. Nastya’s parents invested their money to help get the channel off the ground, funding the fun activities and visits to different parts of the world. This investment has paid off as their daughter has consistently raked in millions of dollars over the years, enough to see them re-settle in the USA.
Arsement first rose to fame as a teenager streaming himself playing games such as Minecraft and Call of Duty. This helped him to garner an appreciable following and since then, he has deployed admirable business acumen to build a lucrative empire for himself. He now employs about 24 people who help him with producing videos as well as running his merch company. He has also scored deals with brands such as Nestle. The YouTuber is also an investor in vacation rentals and real estate with his father managing that aspect of the business.
Hawaii-born Mark Fischbach dropped out of college where he was studying biomedical engineering to pursue YouTube fame by posting Let’s Play gameplay commentary videos. That gamble has paid off big time as years after setting up Markiplier game channel, he now boasts over 27.9 million subscribers and over 14 billion views. A board member of comic book publisher, Red Giant Entertainment; Fischbach has also started his own line of comics.
Old-time buddies, Rhett McLaughlin and Charles Lincoln Neal III, both graduated with engineering degrees from North Carolina State University and worked for years before launching careers in vlogging. They run a number of channels, some of which feature them engaging in the most bizarre of challenges like eating a scorpion. The comic duo now co-host the popular morning talk show, Good Mythical Morning, which has welcomed star guests like Daniel Radcliffe. They also run an LA-based production company called Mythical Entertainment. In 2019, Mythical Entertainment purchased a popular YouTube sketch comedy channel, SMOSH, for $10 million.
This quintet of five former college roommates, Tyler Toney, Coby Cotton, Cory Cotton, Cody Jones, and Garrett Hilbert, became famous for their viral videos depicting trick shots and stunts. They also went up against one another in thrilling good-natured contests in different sports. They now have the 13th most subscribed channel on YouTube and have collaborated with renowned soccer clubs such as Arsenal, Manchester City and Chelsea. Dude Perfect has also launched a mobile app as well as embarked on a national tour which grossed $6 million. It is earnings such as this that have helped the group emerge one of the highest-paid YouTube vloggers for the year.
Real name Jimmy Donaldson, Mr Beast has a penchant for doing big and expensive stunts (such as giving people a million dollars to spend in one minute) and this has paid off in multi-folds. His channel now has billions of views and he makes seven-figure earnings from YouTube’s monetization policy. There are also merch sales and sponsorship deals.
The honour for the highest-paid YouTube vlogger for 2020 goes to the nine-year-old Texan, Ryan Kaji. Supported by his mom, father and sisters, Kaji runs a bubbly channel which features reviews of toys, family storytime as well as science experiments. The channel has grown in popularity since launch and Kaji now has a lucrative licensing deal covering action figures and bedroom décor. It is that licensing deal that has contributed to him emerging the highest-paid YouTube vlogger for three consecutive years namely 2018 – $22 million, 2019 – $26 million, and 2020 – $29.5 million.
Ten Highest Paid YouTube Vloggers Right Now
1. Ryan Kaji – $29.5 million
2. Mr. Beast – $24 million
3. Dude Perfect – $23 million
4. Rhett and Link – $20 million
5. Markiplier – $19.5 million
6. Preston Arsement – $19 million
7. Nastya – $18.5 million
8. Blippi – $17 million
9. David Dobrik – $15.5 million
10. Jeffree Star – $15 million