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  • John Bayliss

These 10 influencers have built empires online

Against a red background, there is a hand holding a smart phone with the YouTube logo displayed on it.

Since it launched in 2005, YouTube has allowed countless content creators to broadcast themselves worldwide.

Many of these YouTube influencers have used the platform to launch successful careers in the film and television industries, while others have achieved global celebrity status.

The popularity of these YouTubers has allowed them to reach massive audiences, and this fact has not been lost on brands seeking to advertise on the platform.

Social media has changed the nature of advertising, and more and more companies realize that an endorsement from a famous YouTuber is worth more than any TV or radio spot.

These ten YouTubers have revolutionized digital advertising by building social media empires.

At 111 million subscribers, Swedish YouTuber Felix Kjellberg is one of the platform's most popular content creators.

He launched his channel in 2011, posting Let's Plays -- a video format that he is credited for popularizing -- and other gaming-related videos.

Since then, he has amassed legions of loyal fans, and in 2013 his channel became the most subscribed on YouTube.

Gaming channels like PewDiePie are a great marketing platform for companies that develop games and gaming hardware.

2. Smosh

Anthony Padilla and Ian Hecox created their comedy sketch channel Smosh in 2005, at the advent of YouTube.

The two became early stars of the platform off of their irreverent song parodies and hilarious shorts.

The style of Smosh's videos has evolved over the years, but at 25 million subscribers, they remain as popular as ever.

Another legacy channel from YouTube's early days, Jenna Mourey has been one of the platform's most beloved icons for the better part of a decade.

Her channel, Jenna Marbles, primarily focused on makeup tutorials, often with a humorous twist.

She has since taken an indefinite hiatus from YouTube, and at 20 million subscribers, she is one of YouTube's top female stars.

Eva Diana Kidisyuk and her younger brother Roma are the faces of Kids Diana Show, a channel with 89 million subscribers that produces content aimed toward YouTube's younger viewers.

With the help of their parents Volodymyr and Olana, Kids Diana Show has achieved international popularity, with their videos being dubbed into multiple languages.

Another channel whose videos are catered toward children, brothers Vladislav and Nikita Vashketov rose to YouTube stardom in 2018 with their channel Vlad and Niki.

Managed by their parents Sergey and Victoria, the channel has garnered over 77 million subscribers and is one of the most profitable on the platform.

They have signed deals with several prominent toy manufacturers whose products they advertise on the channel, making Vlad and Niki a perfect example of how influencer marketing on YouTube can be used to achieve great profits.

Logan Paul got his start on the now defunct video platform Vine. After moving to YouTube in 2013, he made a name for himself by posting vlogs and quickly became one of the platform's most popular stars.

The fame that YouTube brought him has allowed Paul to find success beyond the platform, notably as an actor, podcast host, and professional wrestler.

Over the years, he has been embroiled in a litany of controversies, but his personal brand remains as strong as ever.

Dude Perfect is a channel that features its hosts Tyler Toney, Cody Jones, Garrett Hilbert, and the Cotton brothers performing seemingly impossible trick shots.

The channel's unique content has netted it a fan base of over 57 million, but where Dude Perfect has excelled is in it's branding and merchandising.

Dude Perfect's lucrative merch store is a prime example of how a YouTube channel can make money without relying solely on video output.

James Charles is a cosmetic artist whose unique and informative makeup tutorials have brought in over 24 million subscribers and 3 billion views.

He uses his expertise to deliver content that appeals to those who are interested in beauty and lifestyle products.

A YouTuber such as Charles is the perfect influencer for companies looking to market cosmetics and beauty products.

Vlogging continues to be one of YouTube's most popular video genres, and Venezuelan-American artist Lele Pons is one of the website's top creators in this niche.

Her vlogs feature her going on various adventures and have made her one of the top lifestyle influencers.

Named by Time Magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world, Felipe Neto Rodrigues Vieira is a Brazilian-Portuguese YouTuber and actor.

In 2015 he founded Paramaker, a YouTube business network that specializes in managing Brazillian content creators.


YouTube is still one of the best platforms for influencer marketing.

For brands looking to expand their audience, using the fanbase of a popular YouTuber, like the ones featured in this list, is a great strategy.

However, it's important that your product or service matches that YouTuber's audience.

Every day new YouTubers are finding immense popularity on success on the platform, so get out there and start looking! Who knows, you might just find the next viral star.


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