Self-made celebrities, YouTube stars are people who have built a following by creating video content aimed at teaching, entertaining, reviewing, and generally being awesome on the internet.

The majority of these small-screen celebrities do what they do because they want to create and perform in front of an audience.


While making money may not be your primary motivation for starting a YouTube channel, the abundance of income options is a pleasant surprise once you realise how many they are.

Who makes the most money on YouTube?

The following ten YouTube accounts, according to Forbes, made the most money in 2020:


Ryan Kaji has a net worth of $29.5 million dollars (41.7 million subscribers)

Mr. Beast (Jimmy Donaldson) is worth $24 million (47.8 million subscribers)

Dude Perfect is worth $23 million (57.5 million subscribers)

Rhett & Link will receive $20 million (41.8 million subscribers)

Markiplier (Mark Fischbach) is worth $19.5 million (27.8 million subscribers)

Preston Arsement is a wealthy man with a net worth of $19 million (33.4 million subscribers)

$18.5 million in total Nastya (Anastasia Radzinskaya) is a Russian actress (190.6 million subscribers)

Blippi (Stevin John) is worth $17 million (27.4 million subscribers)

David Dobrik is worth $15.5 million (18 million subscribers)

Jeffree Star has a $15 million net worth (16.9 million subscribers)

After reading this list, you might have a lot of questions about how these YouTube stars made their money. Let’s look at a couple of them.

Is there a way to get paid for uploading videos to YouTube?

YouTube does not pay content creators for their uploaded videos. Videos are also not monetized by default. To start making money on YouTube, you must enable monetization in your YouTube account settings. From there, you can join the YouTube Partner Program or have your videos featured on YouTube Premium.


What methods do you use to make money from your YouTube channel?

Aside from the millions of dollars and subscribers gained, the Forbes list has a few takeaways.

To begin with, a YouTube channel can be monetized even if it does not have millions of subscribers. Your earning potential is determined not only by the number of subscribers and views you have, but also by the level of engagement you generate, the niche you target, and the revenue streams you pursue. That isn’t to say that having a large number of subscribers isn’t important; see our YouTube subscriber tips for more information.

Second, this list of the top ten earners may lead you to believe that YouTube is solely responsible for the millions of dollars earned. In fact, each of these channels has its own line of merchandise. These channels first found and built their audiences before launching their own merchandise. If you want to make money on YouTube as part of your marketing strategy, the first step is to figure out who your target market is.

Getting to know your YouTube audience

Once you’ve built your own audience, you’ll be in a great position to monetize content in a variety of ways. However, knowing who your target audience is will help you make the most of your opportunities.

According to many YouTubers looking to monetize, the more niche your channel is, the better position you’ll be in to work with brands looking to target specific audiences (more on that later).


You should pay special attention to the following points:

  • Check the gender of your audience to see if it’s skewed toward one group or the other.
  • The age group that makes up the majority of your audience
  • The viewers of your videos are from all over the world (countries or cities).
  • Your audience’s overall engagement (or “watch time”)

If you have this demographic data, you’ll have a better understanding of your own audience and will be able to work with brands more effectively. Although your YouTube analytics can provide all demographic information, a tool like Social Blade can be used to compare your channel to others.

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, we can talk about the various ways your YouTube channel can earn money.