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  • Meerelle Cruz

YouTube Reveals the Year's Most Popular Videos and Creators in 2021

While YouTube will not be doing a 'Rewind' clip this year due to negative feedback on its more recent creator compilations, it has today released an overview of the top videos and creative stars of 2021, highlighting some of the year's key trends, which may help you develop a better platform strategy.

YouTube's Top Ten listings are available in 17 different regions, providing local performance insight and further refining the presentation, which could put you in the correct direction for gaining insight into what's working with your target audience.

Mr. Beast, as you can see, comes out on top, with his 'buried alive' video experiment receiving over 147 million views since March. Mr. Beast – or Jimmy Donaldson – is the poster child for YouTube success, having progressed from simple early experiments in which he attempted to match with the platform's algorithms to becoming (perhaps) the world's most famous YouTuber. Donaldson is expected to earn roughly $16 million in direct earnings from YouTube this year, excluding endorsements and other commercial arrangements not related to his YouTube channel adverts.

Of course, not everyone can be Mr. Beast, especially with the money he can now spend on his most elaborate experiments, but if you're looking for YouTube success tips, these clips and creators could help, and viewing their content could inform your presentation style and format, keeping you in line with broader trends. Mr. Beast also tops YouTube's 'Creators' list, while TikTok star 'KallMeKris' makes an appearance, highlighting TikTok's growing effect on broader movements once again.

It's worth noting that six of the top ten creators on this list are from the gaming industry, emphasizing the importance of gaming as a primary driver of digital culture. If you're not paying attention to how gaming affects web trends, you're missing out on a critical piece of the puzzle, as well as possible commercial prospects.

YouTube also showcases the top-performing music clips, as well as rising creators who have acquired traction over the course of the year, and it places a special emphasis on Shorts, its TikTok clone, which it's now seeking to promote as a core component of the app. Indeed, YouTube claims that Shorts clips now get more than 15 billion total views per day, up from 6.5 billion in March, as it continues to expand the format by global video consumption trends and, hopefully, as a way to keep users from migrating to TikTok.

Shorts don't appear to have slowed TikTok's growth in any way, but by providing a similar platform, YouTube may be able to keep more of its top creators in its app, which will have longer-term benefits in terms of consumption and growth, as popular stars remain more closely aligned with YouTube and build their channels in the app.

It's a fascinating summary of video trends, and given that YouTube is the most popular online video platform, it's a snapshot of overall web content movements and interests, catching the important factors that are now driving viewer interest. Again, if you're searching for a route into YouTube and some ideas for your strategy, these artists and clips can be a nice place to start.

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