MrBeast Earned $75 Million Last Year (The Most In YouTube Creator History)

How Much Money Does MrBeast Make In A Year Forbes Highest Paid YouTube Stars 2021

Forbes has confirmed what the majority has long-suspected about YouTube’s king of virality – MrBeast (real name: Jimmy Donaldson) – with a staggering breakdown of his 2021 earnings. As previously hinted, the man’s making serious bank. Just how much money does MrBeast make in a given year? Based on the most recent figures, the young content pioneer from Kansas took home an unprecedented US$54 million (AU$75 million) last year alone.

That’s even more than vlogger-cum-professional boxer Jake Paul, who comes in at second place with US$45 million (AU$62.4 million) thanks to his extremely publicised bouts against retired MMA champions Ben Askren and Tyron Woodley; 10-year-old toy reviewer Ryan Koji, who vacates the top spot he occupied in 2020 for seventh place with US$27 million (AU$37.5 million); and even Jake’s older brother Logan Paul, despite facing off against the legendary Floyd Mayweather, who places ninth with US$18 million (AU$25 million).

“Thanks to that surge in views, his 2021 payday is almost double what last year’s #1 brought in,” explains the Forbes rich list’s rationale, referring to Koji’s revised ranking.

“Another attention-grabbing project from 2021: MrBeast Burger – an app and menu that lets fans order MrBeast-branded meals from 1,600 restaurants across the country that have partnered with him to fulfil the orders.”

“MrBeast handles the marketing, pushing the burgers at his nearly 90 million YouTube subscribers. He and the restaurants then split the profits from the orders. So far, the operation has sold five million sandwiches.”

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It goes without saying 2021 was a record year for the talented Mr Donaldon, kicking off the 12-month calendar period with 50 million subscribers to his channel, and finishing up with a remarkable 88 million. Currently ranked the 8th most subscribed channel on the entire platform and the 3rd largest in the United States, uniting wildly generous charity with his juvenile yet earnest brand of whimsy have – in the words of Bloomberg – been the key to cracking YouTube’s “secret code” for viral content. But as the adage goes, you’ve gotta spend money to make money.

While $75 million is undoubtedly more cold hard cash than most of us will ever touch, last year, an even more compelling question than, “How much money does MrBeast make in a year?” was answered: how much money does MrBeast spend in a year when it comes to his content?

During an interview with fellow YouTubers Colin & Samir, he offered the duo a rare behind-the-scenes look into his finances, which indicated the overarching strategy involved re-investing the revenue directly into what we click/see/hear/talk about around the watercooler. Donaldson’s monthly content creation expenditure sat around the airspace of US$4 million (AU$5.5 million) – bringing his total annual video budget to a jaw-dropping US$48 million (AU$65.5 million).

“You go from making money, spending money to making money, losing money,” says Samir Chaudry.

“On some videos… then other videos I have to make money to make up for it,” responds Jimmy Donaldson, admitting he often finds himself in the red, if not operating on razor-thin margins. This is also precisely why the MrBeast net worth (likely) won’t be an awfully large number.

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How can MrBeast possibly justify spending this much money? As you will have gathered, what’s being described is a very rewarding ecosystem wherein you can trade blockbuster-scale effort for sustainable returns. Around the time of his interview with Colin & Samir, the main MrBeast channel alone generated approximately 700 million views in the 28 days prior, i.e. the combined population of the US, Brazil, Russia, and Japan. What’s even more impressive was the channel’s staggering 70% audience retention rate in each upload.

“I only want money so I can make better videos, so I can grow my channel… I don’t care about making money, I don’t care about time, I just want to make the best videos on the planet.”

Bloomberg atomised your run-of-the-mill MrBeast video into a potent blend of the three most popular YouTube genres:

  1. “There’s the outrageous challenge, such as staying inside a block of ice for a day or being the last one to leave a vat of ramen noodles.”
  2. “There’s the celebrity guest appearance: Donaldson often works with other marquee YouTubers, including his favorite, the scientist Mark Rober.”
  3. “And there’s the reaction video — MrBeast has a posse of blundering childhood friends who participate in his stunts and generally play the role of hype men.”

Throw in a dash of cultural zeitgeist – like the incredibly successful, real-life Squid Game challenge which offered an equally real US$456,000 cash prize; racking up over 204 million views to date since November 25th – and you’ve practically got yourself a personal ATM.

“The videos take months of prep. A lot of them take four to five days of relentless filming. There’s a reason other people don’t do what I do,” adds Jimmy Donaldson.

“The beauty of YouTube is double the effort isn’t double the views… it’s like 10X. The first million subscribers you get will take years, but the second will come in a few months.”

Check out the Forbes confirmed list of the highest-paid YouTube stars in 2021 below.

The Highest-Paid YouTube Stars In 2021 (According To Forbes)

** All $$$ referenced in USD

  1. Jimmy Donaldson (MrBeast) – $54 million | 88.2 million subscribers
  2. Jake Paul – $45 million | 20.4 million subscribers
  3. Markiplier – $38 million | 31.5 million subscribers
  4. Rhett & Link (Good Mythical Morning) – $30 million | 17.4 million subscribers
  5. Unspeakable – $28.5 million | 12.9 million subscribers
  6. Like Nastya – $28 million | 85.8 million subscribers
  7. Ryan Koji (Ryan’s World) – $27 million | 31.4 million subscribers
  8. Dude Perfect – $20 million | 57 million subscribers
  9. Logan Paul – $18 million | 23.3 million subscribers
  10. Preston Arsement – $16 million | 18.8 million subscribers