Now everyone at some point after watching their favourite YouTuber’s have wanted to pick up a camera themselves and start Vlogging. I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t considered a Vlog or two here and there and then snapped myself back to reality each time with the same questions. Who am I doing this for? Who is going to watch? Will I embarrass myself?, and yet, I can sit and watch a “real” YouTuber Vlogging just from their local high street after popping to the shops and eating dinner. But what is it that makes certain YouTuber’s so much more popular than other YouTuber’s?
Since it began back in 2009, YouTube has become more of a household name the further down the line we get. YouTuber’s or video influencer’s as they now like to refer to themselves, or creators have invaded our lives, not just from our small screens but stretching to our big screens too, with some creating their own documentaries, short movies and full length travel movies *cough* Joe and Casper hit the road. But why? Or how are they coming to be offered these deals?
It’s not uncommon now for a YouTuber to have a video entitled “big announcement” and to be sharing that they’ve got a book deal. I’m convinced book deals just come with the sign up process of a YouTube channel at this point. Yet, all of these books, whether they be fiction or nonfiction, will set out in days and glide their way up the book charts before they’ve even been released, for example, the Saccone Joly’s have announced their own book, specifically aimed towards children, as a family of 3 of their own children, the book is set to be released later this year in October and is already top of the children’s book charts as a pre order.
Granted it tends to be a certain age group that sends these book sales rocketing. The young adults and children have become part of this new fan base that has been created and built along with the growing success of the creators. It’s this audience that will buy anything that has their favourite YouTuber’s faces on them almost as much as another fan would of their own favourite celebrity such as Beyonce or Justin Bieber. YouTube has become a creative platform for a whole new style of celebrity, the kind that don’t have to be able to sing or act but instead are famed for sitting in their bedrooms and sharing makeup tutorials and life style hacks.
Along with the offer of book deals being thrown towards so many of the video influencer’s, many have also been given the greater opportunities to create their very own product lines of cosmetics and home accessories. Top of this list are the cosmetic lines by faces such as Fleur de force, Tanya Burr and the most expanded of them, Zoe Sugg, a.k.a Zoella who has become one of the biggest YouTuber’s of the entire community. Tanya and Fleur have gained even more notoriety for their brand of eye, lip and brow products, all of which have been widely promoted on all their platforms, YouTube, twitter, Instagram and blogs, as well as through word of mouth of their fans and recommendations. They’ve been included in celebrity makeup kits and fashion blogs inside print and online magazines.
Companies, high end and drugstore have come to realise that a YouTube face boosts their sales. This is evident in many a magazine and cosmetic line with many American and Australian YouTuber’s have also been given the opportunity to team up and collaborate with designer make up brands such as Nikkie Tutorials on YouTube with both brands Ofra and Too Faced cosmetics, creating her own kit with selected products which instantly sold out and had to be restocked due to high demand from her make- up fan base and viewers.
Perhaps with one of the most successful product lines is the most subscribed with 0ver 11 million subscribers and followed YouTuber, a new household name on her own is Zoella, or real name Zoe Sugg. Zoe made her name by talking about her monthly favourites, branching across make-up, fashion and lifestyle which brought viewers in their masses to her channel. Zoe has been on the cover of and featured in countless amounts of magazines from then on and has her own product line that features bath bombs, soaps, fragrances, make-up and travel bags for each season.
Zoe’s most recent line came with her home furnishings line in which she filmed the launch of her products in an apartment showcasing, fans were also able to win tickets to this product launch in an online competition. Zoe has been described as the internet queen and last year moved into a £1 million mansion that she shares with her YouTube boyfriend, Alfie Deyes. YouTube has become one of the most well paid jobs, controversially perhaps with many claiming that it’s not a real job, sitting in your room and filming, whilst on the other side of the scale, disagree. Zoella is said to be the highest earning YouTuber with a rumoured earning of £50,000 a month just from her YouTube channels.
Like any other celebrity, these new found fame celebrities from YouTube don’t come without their hate comments which appear on almost every single video that is uploaded by them and their scandals. Once again including Zoe, she was accused of using a ghost writer to create her first novel “girl online”, and after going into hiding on social media for a few days, she then denied it. However, she did then go on to release a further 2 more novels in the Girl online series.
Zoella, Tanya Burr, Fleur and Nikkie are all a part of the beauty side of YouTube with their make-up tutorials and fashion look books that advise on styling and hauls to show off their latest products. Beauty guru’s have completely taken over and have inspired many young girls to become more free and much more confident with going out there with their bolder and yet also softer make-up looks and testing out their techniques to get the perfect blend for inspiration. Other beauty guru’s include viral names such as Chloe Morello from Australia who also became known for her funny voice over’s to accompany her make-up tutorials, which were shared by the thousands on Facebook and Twitter also. Make-up and beauty has gone from being many a hobby for young girls and even young boys, to becoming a community they follow step by step and live by. Young boys are more able and comfortable to test out their own make-up skills because of male beauty gurus such as Jeffree Starr and Manny MUA, slamming the stereotype of only women being allowed to wear make-up.
It’s also not uncommon now for YouTuber’s to be seen on our red carpets for the biggest of events such as the Grammy’s, the Brit awards and many a film premiere. They really are spreading into almost every platform that they can. Tanya Burr has even taken up acting classes in a bid to score a part in a television series.
While some of these vlogger’s tend to only vlog the most exciting parts of their days or their weeks, like when they attend an event, important meetings and having fun with their friends, with the exception of taking part in Vlogmas, the Christmas month long Vlogging spree in which YouTuber’s upload a video every day from the 1st December until Christmas Eve. There are YouTuber’s such as the Saccone Joly’s and ItsJudyslife that upload every single day of the year and show every day of their lives with their families and children. Taking their viewers through out even the most basic of tasks of their day to day life, and yet still managing to keep it interesting and fun and yet real by showing even the tougher moments in comparison to the constant facade of a perfect life. Both of these families, the Saccone Joly’s with Jonathan, Anna and their children, as well as itsjudyslife with Judy, Benji and their own children have shared the most intimate parts of their lives and made a connection with their viewers by filming and uploading the birth videos of all of their children. Viewer’s also went on the tougher journey of the Saccone Joly’s suffering a miscarriage last year and flooded them with their support on social media and in the YouTube comments section.
Viewers have, over time, come to feel a strong sense of a connection with the YouTuber’s that they watch and the lives that they live and their successes. They like to feel as though they are a part of the YouTuber’s achievements and lives and the contribution that they have made on a small and greater part to help their favourite YouTuber’s get to where they are now and further. They like to buy the products and wear the same clothes as the people they are watching and have come to trust them to give their honest opinions with products on what they should and shouldn’t purchase and exactly why. The creator’s YouTube audience help to boost their channels and have become important to them in succeeding also, creating a back and forth relationship and agreement to help build the community further. Young girls and boy’s especially have come to be able to look up at these faces on the screens and many have claimed that people like Zoe have become their role models and that they want to be like her and live like her and the other YouTuber’s they see. They have come to want the life that they are living and see them as a luxury that they get an insight into through the world of YouTube.
There are people, however, who disagree with the whole concept of YouTuber’s and the amount of money they get paid for each video and go as far as to claim that it’s ridiculous, many of which actually leave the comments stating this in the comments sections of the YouTuber’s themselves to express their distaste. It’s not uncommon though to see a whole hoard of the hardcore fans stepping in to defend the YouTube creator on their behalf.