When you think about top YouTubers, PewDiePie, with his controversy-courting video-game-playing empire, or Lilly Singh, with her star-studded and charismatic comedy sketches, probably spring to mind.
But the people behind the site’s most popular channels may surprise you, probably because much of their day jobs consist of recess and learning basic math.
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For nearly five months, the number one YouTube channel has been Ryan’s ToysReview. In the videos he makes with his mom, 5-year-old Ryan unboxes and talks about the toys and games he likes. In the last week alone, he’s gone on vacation, dressed up in Christmas costumes with his baby twin sisters and taste tested ice cream with his dad.
The channel launched in March of 2015 and since then has garnered more than 5 million subscribers.
But Ryan and his folks aren’t the only family that has been capturing attention on the video platform. For the last three weeks, the channel Toy Freaks has been in the top five and is currently the number three most viewed in the United States.
The channel, which has been around since 2012, is currently hovering around 4.5 million subscribers. It stars two sisters, Annabelle and Victoria, and their father, who make vlogs and perform silly comedy skits.
The kids have beat out big names such as James Corden and the WWE when it comes to getting viral views. So what can we learn from these young upstarts? Clearly, while being adorable often helps, what you don’t need is a big budget or even much name recognition to make an impact. Authenticity, camaraderie and a joy in your work will break through the noise.