Everybody knows of the internet site YouTube. And by “Everybody”, I mean EVERYBODY. According to YouTube itself, it is visited by over 800, 000, 000 users every single month who spend 4 billion hours behind their screens, using the popular site. With such power to reach the masses the site has become a dream for advertisers every where. One would be out of their mind not to use the “Tube” , taking advantage of their low prices, and the power to reach consumers comparable to those of 2nd and 3rd tier cable networks. the companies advertising do so in the most popular videos, whose submitters also get a slice of the cake. Exactly how much? up to $9000 is what google gives the YouTubers per 2 millions views reached, and if that doesn’t seem that much keep in mind this is not counting the advertisements in the beginning (you can skip this ad in 5 seconds) and the biggest slice, which is the payment the bloggers receive to feature certain products in their video.
Let’s take one of YouTube’s most prolific bloggers, Michelle Phan. while still in college, Michelle started blogging about her favorite beauty tips, and making tutorials for other girls to learn them. 6 years, and almost 200 videos later, Michelle’s popularity has skyrocketed. At 3, 086, 677 subscribers, Phan’s following surpasses the population of 104 countries. A thorogh knowledge in math is not needed to see how advertising in one of Michelle’s videos could bring in high profits. One of her most watched videos, (Lady Gaga Bad Romance tutorial) has reached over 35 000 000 views on its own. wow.
How exactly did Michelle get so many followers? using only a JVC recorder, her MacBook Pro and iMovie software, Phan managed to create her first, surprisingly professional quality videos. It was her creativity, which captivated the viewers and made her the idol of young and old alike. When Forbes (yes Forbes interviewed this lady) asked about her creations, she simply stated “there is something magical about narration and voiceovers. recording a voiceover is an art form in itself. I do not feel as if my approach is any different from what other artists before me have done in other mediums, the singular difference if any is the path i followed is online”.
Whatever it is that Michelle does is clearly working. Whether it be her creative delivery, content, beauty or voice, Michelle has become one business woman to be reckoned with. Make-up mega brand Lancome and Coach leather goods have signed up Michelle to feature their products in her videos. Though the exact amount of money being exchanged is not public, Michelle’s net-worth is estimated to be around 3 million dollars and growing, not too shabby for an average girl from Florida with a passion for make-up.
Michelle may be just a fluke, but it really puts in perspective just how much time “we” as consumers have spent behind our screens in recent years. though it is not common for people to become millionaires due to a career in “YouTubing”, the number of people who earn their living doing so is certainly increasing. All it takes is the right kind of “magic” to catch the audience’s attention. Though it is harder than it seems, the effort to become popular is definitely worth it for those dreaming about becoming an online celebrity.