The YouTube Growth Strategy Mr. Beast, Cocomelon, & Like Nastya Use to Dominate the Internet

YouTube growth strategies continue to be a hot topic among marketers. In fact, most marketers plan to increase their YouTube budgets this year and say the platform has the highest growth potential in 2024.

Anytime you’re talking about YouTube growth (and I talk about growth a lot as the founder of Thompson Media Group), Jimmy Donaldson’s Mr. Beast channel is high on the list.

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It’s easy to understand why. Today, the Mr. Beast YouTube channel has 240 million subscribers, the second most of any channel on the platform. There are many reasons why this channel is so popular, but the strategy I recommend most to my clients centers on expanding their view of who their ideal customer is.

YouTube’s Power Players Use This Growth Strategy

What’s the million-dollar strategy for growing your audience and your customer base? The answer is surprisingly straightforward: inclusion marketing. Yep, that’s it. I’ve built an entire consulting business around helping brands grow with inclusion in marketing and belonging, and I can spot a great strategy from a mile away.

For example, Mr. Beast employs inclusion marketing by offering his content in multiple languages. Reed Duchscher, his talent manager, explains that this is one of the primary forces driving his rapid growth.

screenshot of a linkedin post annoucing that Mr. Beast hit 200 million youtube subscribers

The strategy here is simple: get your content and products in front of more people who have the problem your brand solves. More qualified eyeballs mean more people consuming your content and buying your products.

Globalization as a growth lever is nothing new. That’s why you’ll see McDonald’s, Netflix, and Nike developing localized content around the globe.

Remember, a different language doesn’t mean we don’t have the same problem — or can’t benefit from the same solution.

As an inclusive marketing strategist and consultant, I tell my clients it’s never been easier or more cost-effective to grow your brand by including a broader diversity of consumers. I spend a ton of time talking about practical ways to use inclusive marketing as a growth lever on my podcast, Inclusion & Marketing.

This episode goes deep on how to grow your brand through globalization, including localizing your content.

And it’s not just Mr. Beast who’s embracing this strategy.

Cocomelon, Kids Diana Show, and Like Nastya have all snagged coveted spots in the top 10 most subscribed YouTube channels. How? Each of them makes their content available in multiple languages — and has earned millions of fans as a result.

Think this is just for kid cartoons and hype engines? Think again. Even business-focused brands such as GaryVee, VidIQ, and IKEA are embracing inclusion marketing.

How You Can Reach a Global Audience

These creators aren’t creating dozens of assets at a time. They’re creating one video and localizing it into other languages using dubbing and voiceover.

Once the dubbed content is made, there are two approaches creators use to get localized content to their audiences.

1. Language-Specific Channels

Cocomelon, Kids Diana Show, and Like Nastya all have multiple YouTube channels, each dedicated to specific languages.

Kids Diana Show has 119 million subscribers on the English language version of the channel. She’s added more than 72 million additional subscribers, with language channels hosting the same, but localized, content.

Like Nastya has 113 million subscribers on her English language channel. Her brand has more than 82 million additional subscribers on other language channels.

Business channels have seen success here as well. VidIQ has 1.78 million subscribers on their English language channel. And they’ve added an additional 351,000 subscribers on the Spanish language channel alone.

2. One Channel, Multiple Languages

The outlier here is Mr. Beast, who previously hosted several different channels dedicated to various languages. In 2022, that changed.

Around this time, YouTube began working with top creators like Mr. Beast to test out multi-language audio. This new feature allows creators to manage one channel by uploading different audio, thumbnails, and descriptions to their accounts.

When a user comes across the video, it’s automatically shown to them in their local language. This allows creators to deliver a seamless customer experience for their audience while also being more efficient content managers.

YouTube noted that creators who tested this multi-language audio feature saw 15% of their watch time come from views in the video’s non-primary language.

While this feature isn’t yet available to all accounts, YouTube plans a phased rollout of the functionality to more creators.

How To Use Localization In Your Brand

Of course, it’s important to consider the customer experience you’re delivering to your audience.

Over the years, I’ve interviewed dozens of consumers with identities from underrepresented and underserved communities. A common frustration they share is feeling like brands fall short by delivering substandard experiences to them.

One Spanish-speaking consumer told me that when brands don’t make their content available in Spanish, he feels like they send the message that “people who speak Spanish aren’t important.”

When it comes to engaging new consumer groups, I always coach my clients to be intentional about delivering experiences that make consumers feel seen, cared for, and like they are important rather than an afterthought. As a result of taking this approach, more of the people you want to serve will feel like they belong with you.

The end goal of this strategy is to create video content that’s accessible to people who speak other languages. But there are lots of ways to get there.

Here’s a quick video where I walk through a few of those options and provide examples and considerations for each one. I even drop some reactions and feedback from a Spanish-speaking consumer.

1. Use human-dubbed content.

Many of today’s top YouTube channels, including Mr. Beast, use a company called Unilingo to dub videos using professional translators and voiceover talent.

If you’ve ever watched a movie with audio in another language, you’ll notice that great care is taken to ensure the voiceover looks and sounds like the original. Tone match and synchronicity deliver a better experience to the end user.

Think of this as a moment to delight your audience by working with a human voice-over artist skilled in matching the original speaker’s energy, emotion, and intonation.

2. Use AI-dubbed content.

Ok, ok. I know I just told you to use human-dubbed content. But I realize that sometimes it’s just not possible.

If you haven’t noticed, the market is flooded with AI tools right now. That means you’ve got options for dubbing using artificial intelligence. Simply upload your video, select a voiceover you like, and in just a few minutes, you have a dubbed video.

If you use this option, it’s important to have the translated version verified by certified translators before publishing.

Although AI-powered translations are often good, there are nuances associated with localizing content. You’ll also want to maintain your brand voice and tone — something that can be difficult to capture with a language learning model.

The AI will translate your content verbatim when what you’re really after is transcreation. In a transcreation, you choose the words and phrases that capture the full intention and essence of what you’re saying.

In the podcast episode below, I go deep into translation, transcreation, and the proactive choices you must make when localizing content. For instance, should your brand be using gender neutral language (gendered language is very common in languages like Spanish and French), and if so, how should you approach nuances here? These decisions will have a big impact on how people perceive your brand.

3. Add multi-language subtitles to your video.

Subtitles are another way to make your YouTube videos more accessible. You can upload multiple subtitle files in other languages directly in your YouTube content studio.

youtube video subtitles landing page

YouTube also gives you the option to upload localized thumbnails, titles, and video descriptions to deliver a consistent experience in the end user’s local language.

When a user arrives on your video, they’ll hear your original audio while reading the subtitles in their preferred language.

image of the youtube translation popup window

The same rules apply when ensuring you have a high-quality subtitle translation that human translators either transcreated or verified.

Break Through the Noise with Inclusive Video Content

Think beyond your existing audience to grow your YouTube channel and your business.

Start where you can, and make improvements over time as you learn more about what your new global audience needs most from you.

Once you get into the groove of expanding content reach using inclusion, you’ll develop new relationships with new audiences that will allow them to reach new levels of success. And, at the end of the day, that’s your goal, right?

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