YouTube Shorts: Marie Stella’s Unprecedented Growth on YouTube
June 2, 2022
Short form videos can be traced back to the good old days of Vine! But they really hit mainstream during the 2020 lockdowns with the explosion of TikTok. And before you knew it, Instagram rolled out Reels. But what about YouTube? Google quietly rolled out YouTube Shorts in India in late 2020 before introducing it to the rest of the world in March 2021. Since then, it’s catapulted the platform to even higher levels of popularity as Shorts gave smaller channels an opportunity to reach larger audiences, much faster.
One channel, in particular, experienced unprecedented growth due to YouTube Shorts. And that channel belongs to one of Dulcedo’s own: Marie Stella! Marie went from less than 3000 YouTube subscribers in January 2022 to 710K+ as of the publishing of this article (June 1, 2022).
We sat down with Marie to talk shop! She shares her experience on the platform, the keys to subscriber growth, and some hopeful advice for those thinking of taking the plunge… on to YouTube!
What prompted you to initially start using YouTube Shorts?
A really good friend of mine had already experienced major growth on the platform and had encouraged me to get started as well. Hearing his success story, I was really inspired to give it a shot. At the time, I had already shared many videos on different platforms, so all I really had to do was repost them on YT Shorts. I mean, I had nothing to lose!
Did you see a positive impact in terms of growth because of YouTube Shorts? If so, how long did it take to notice a difference?
YES! In January of 2022, I had about 2.89k subscribers and by the end of that same week, I was at 100k subscribers! Three days later, I was at 200K subscribers. The growth was very sudden and happened when I expected it the least. I have over 700K right now and to be completely honest, I don’t think I would have ever gained those subscribers as quickly if it wasn’t for YT shorts.
What do you do differently on Shorts in comparison to Instagram or TikTok?
Although the three platforms offer similar features, we often use Shorts, Instagram and TikTok for different purposes. We also spend a different amount of time on each platform.
As a consumer, I go on Instagram to check on the users I follow and scroll for just a bit, before logging out. On TikTok, I’m there for a distraction, something that doesn’t require me to think too much— just a good laugh or even a good cry. But on YouTube, I search up my favorite creators, sit down with a good meal and watch their videos for at least thirty minutes.
YouTube has a set long-form format for over a decade that people are used to. Once YouTube users subscribe to their favorite creators, they often search them up instead of waiting for them to pop on their feed. This creates a sense of community and loyalty between the audience and the creator.
A lot of the comments I receive on Shorts go along the lines of: “I’ve been binge-watching your videos all day” or “I search you up every day to see if you posted”. These are words I don’t often find on other platforms. I also found that there was a higher engagement on the longer skits I made (45-50 secs). There’s a great audience for short-formatted stories no matter what niche you’re in!
What is the best tip you can give to creators on using Shorts?
Keep persevering even if you don’t see results right away! Before I gained this sudden success on Shorts, I was posting every three to four months not really hoping for much. Those videos would get stuck at 300-600 views and for a moment, I thought that this platform wasn’t for me. I gave it another serious try in 2022 and tried to be as consistent as I could, and it paid off! Now, even the Shorts that initially "flopped" are the ones that have over 10 million views!
Do you think there's still potential for new creators to join YouTube and be successful? And do you think Shorts would be a good growth strategy for newer creators?
Absolutely! I think YouTube has given an amazing opportunity for creators to start a channel from scratch and to grow quickly! It’s pretty crazy that some Shorts creators have gained an even higher amount of subscribers than the creators that they were subscribed to for years!
How long does it take you to create and edit your Shorts?
HOURS LOL! Since I play different characters, have a lot of costume changes, need to do makeup and hair and so on. It’s fun but it is time consuming. I’ve gotten quicker with editing so I’m happy with that! Depending on the length of the video and how many characters are in the skit, it can take anywhere from a few hours to all day long!
Any tips on the best days and times to be posting Shorts to reach the widest audience possible?
I think that it varies for every creator. Posting every day has definitely helped me grow quicker in the past but it can do the opposite for another creator. I think the best advice I can give is to first try out different times/days and take note of how each video does and if there’s a pattern that works better than the other. As for the times, YouTube analytics can give a good idea of when the creator’s audience is most active. But I wouldn’t stress too much about the time either, because with the current algorithm, videos can pick up and go viral even months later!
What platform do you prefer the most and why?
I love TikTok because it’s definitely been the platform that’s pushed me to where I am today and that helped me discover myself as a creator. But I also have a soft spot for YouTube. I watched A LOT of YouTube growing up. I also dreamt of becoming a YouTuber when I was a teenager, so it’s really a dream come true to be able to call myself a YouTuber now.