How do YouTubers grow up so quickly

Pop parodies, Minecraft and hairstyle tips - How the biggest Youtubers built their reach

That's how Y-Titty, Gronkh, Bibi & Co grew up

The guys from the comedy channel Y-Titty turned PSY's "Gangnam Style" into the "Gandalf Style"

Youtubers like Y-Titty, Gronkh and Bibi are now well known beyond the video portal. But how did they become famous; how did you find your first audience? The same trick worked for many of them.

In the meantime, it is likely to be the dream of many young people: to become a successful Youtuber and thus to become famous and ultimately earn five to six-figure sums a month. But how do you make a canal big; how do you get attention and views when nobody knows you?

Many of today's YouTube giants rely on a meanwhile proven means - by producing content that matches search terms that users often use on YouTube (and Google, because after all, the parent company also includes video links directly on the search results pages depending on search queries ) and so simply add to existing ranges. The spectrum ranges from search queries to chart hits, successful computer games, well-known athletes or even certain hairstyles. “Youtube is very search-driven. It is amazing how difficult it is for companies in particular to understand that the first 50,000 subscribers can almost only be obtained through YouTube SEO, ”says YouTube expert and consultant Christoph Burseg.

With many of the big YouTube stars, it is still relatively easy to understand what content helped them to expand their reach in the beginning. It is sufficient to display all videos of the entire channel sorted by popularity and then to see which of the most popular videos are closest to the date the channel was set up. We did the work for you and took a closer look at some of the largest German YouTube channels.

Y-titty and epigones: pop song and other parodies

Y-titty were the first big German Youtube stars. Although the three of them closed their channel some time ago (and officially said goodbye to the "Creator" business a month ago), the three guys are currently still in the ranking of the largest German YouTube channels with 723 million video views 14th

Y-Titty's channel is a fairly typical example of the trick of building reach by saddling up on an already existing attention-grabbing phenomenon. The three makers experienced their first major leap in reach with an entire parody series of the teen book and film series Twilight (the first part has 2.8 million views today), with which they finally landed on the YouTube homepage. If you want to know more about the early days of Y-Titty, you should listen to the Rockstars podcast with Oguz Yilmaz.

After that, corruptions of big (and of course much sought-after on YouTube) chart hits helped to further increase the number of views and subscribers, such as the song "Love the Way You Lie" by Eminem and Rihanna (until today almost 16 Million views). Today, 16 of Y-Titty's 20 most popular videos are parodies of pop songs.

The most popular videos in the Y-Titty channel, marked in red are the parody videos

If you look up which are the early, most popular videos of other successful German comedy channels on Youtube, the same pattern emerges. Apecrime For example, currently in 22nd place in the German YouTube ranking with 600 million views, they produced parody videos right from the start. With their very first video, the "monkey gang" pulled the rapper Moneyboy through the cocoa, followed a few weeks later by Rihanna with David Guetta and Flo Rida with Nicki Minaj. With a parody of Katy Perry's “Part of Me”, Apecrime achieved seven-digit views for the first time one year after the channel was founded (the video has so far recorded 1.5 million views). Today, Apecrime's second most popular clip is a parody of the song Traum by Stuttgart rapper Cro with around 8 million views.

The outsider (25th place in the German YouTube ranking with 549 million views) list nine of the 20 of their most popular videos that are either direct song parodies or at least target related search terms, such as "Selena Gomez kissed Justin Bieber" (7 , 5 million views) or their own song “Party Rock”, the title of which is strongly reminiscent of that of the chart hit “Party Rock Anthem” by LMFAO.

The channel of The Lochis (27th place, 486 million views) was founded in 2011; A few months later, the Youtubers had their first major success with the parody of a song by Taio Cruz (4.9 million views today). Today, of their 20 most popular videos, 15 are parodies.

The most popular videos from "Die Lochis" (again the parody videos are marked in red)

Gronkh & Co: Minecraft and other successful games

But the principle of building on already established “pop cultural phenomena” and thus generating traffic as an unknown channel operator also works in other areas: So-called Let's Players, who simply film their screen while playing computer games, benefit from powerful videos with their videos Games brands and the resulting search volume.

The Lets Player Gronkh operates the most successful channel for a single personality in Germany. With 1.67 billion views, it is in second place in Germany; only the techno label Kontor is more successful. Minecraft in particular has proven to be a range driver for him. The game emerged from the gaming community in 2009 and 2010 and grew with it, also through distribution on YouTube, Facebook and Reddit.

Gronkh (bourgeois Erik Range) has been active on YouTube since 2010; in the same year he started a lets-play series on Minecraft, which today has over 200 parts. The first part is still Range's most popular video today with 12.7 million views. Ten other videos from his Top 20 also revolve around the game with block graphics.

“Gronkh was just early and consistent. If you upload dozens of videos on the same topic, you rank well on YouTube, ”says YouTube expert Christoph Burseg. “But the topic is also just incredibly popular. PietSmiet and Unge actually only met this demand. ”A look at the most popular videos by PietSmiet (4th place, 1.37 billion views) and Unge confirms Burseg's statement. Another reach driver and presumably a much sought-after term on YouTube is the game Grand Theft Auto 5.

The most popular videos from Gronkh's YouTube channel (Minecraft content marked in red)

Freekickerz: Free kicks from Ronaldo and Messi

The soccer channel Freekickerz is currently the most successful local sports channel with 825 million views in 11th place in the German YouTube ranking. The 29-year-old Konstantin Hert initially simply stood on the sports field and filmed himself shooting a free kick. But how do you get coverage on such videos? In which one turns tutorials about how the most successful footballers take their free kicks - because search terms like “ronaldo freekick” are likely to be extremely popular on YouTube. In January 2010, Hert went online with his YouTube channel; two Ronaldo tutorial videos that were discontinued in 2011 have both achieved 2.5 million views so far. Today the first place of the most popular Freekickerz videos is a clip about "Messi vs. Ronaldo" with almost 27 million views. In addition to the names of football stars, the channel should also generate a lot of traffic through good rankings for keywords such as “freekicks” (currently 3rd place) and “goals” (also 3rd place).

The videos with the highest number of hits on the “freekickerz” YouTube channel - those videos with names of well-known footballers in their titles are marked in red

Bibi: Hairstyle tutorials for the basic range

BibisBeautyPalace (24th place with 570 million views), operated by Bianca Heinicke, is the most successful German beauty channel on Youtube. Even if this is no longer one of her most popular content: A look at the first videos posted by Bibi shows that today's star Youtuber achieved her first reach with how-to tutorials. Instructions for various braided hairstyles and updos (some of these have seven-digit access numbers today) can be found below, as well as jewelry making tutorials and workouts on topics such as “flat stomach” or “slim legs”. “It is now a brand itself - but it built up the first 100,000 subscribers via YouTube search,” says Christoph Burseg. However, she still benefits from traffic from the Youtube search. Because many keywords relevant to their pubescent target group rank very well in YouTube's search results - for example “kiss” (2nd place), “girl” (2nd place) and “break up” (2nd place).

The first ten videos from the "BibisBeautyPalace" channel

According to Christoph Burseg, how well a YouTube video ranks for a particular search term depends above all on how long the users have viewed the particular video. “You can optimize the title, description and thumbnail with one click. But if the users quickly jump off again, YouTube will not rank the video well, ”said the YouTube expert. But here, too, there are tricks: "If I say right at the beginning that a competition is waiting for viewers at the end of the video, I can significantly reduce the bounce rate."

If you want detailed instructions on how to be successful on Youtube, we recommend our Rockstars report “Understanding Youtube” - you can find a reading sample here!