Welcome to Creators Going Pro, where in partnership with Semaphore — a creator-focused family of companies providing business and financial services to social media professionals — we profile professional YouTube stars who have hit it big by doing what they love. Each week, we’ll chat with a creator about the business side of their channel, including identifying their Semaphore Moment — the moment they truly went pro.
Those are the two little words that brought The Royalty Family to YouTube. Andrea Estrada and her partner Ali had long been avid YouTube viewers, and while they watched, they wondered what would happen if they tried their hand at starting a channel. As immigrants from Colombia and Lebanon, respectively, and now part of a blended family raising Andrea’s son Ferran together, the two of them felt they had unique perspectives to share with the world. They also had a solid grip on the entertainment and YouTube businesses: Andrea was an actress and former TV presenter who’d hosted UFC Now, and they were both well-versed in what family-focused YouTube creators were up to.
So, why not?
The family launched their channel in October 2017, and immediately went all-in. They posted three videos right in a row, showing viewers their home life, cooking adventures, and a trip to Vegas. And then their fourth upload, Mom vs Son Challenge!!! LOSER GETS PUNISHED!!, went viral. (It’s since netted more than one million views.) Encouraged, they kept up their rigorous posting schedule–and it paid off. When they logged in to check how much they’d earned in AdSense in their first month as content creators, it was a staggering $8,000.
Andrea and Ali knew immediately that the blistering scheduled they’d set wasn’t going to ease up anytime soon. They committed to being full-time creators–and now, a year and a half of near-daily videos later, they have 6.5 million subscribers and are bringing 80 million views per month. They’ve gotten deals with brands like L’Oréal, Google Pixel, and Bed Bath & Beyond, have launched their own merch line, Royalty Clothing, and have fostered a fledgling group music career.
They’ve also established son Ferran as “The Fashion King.” On an Instagram account managed by Andrea, Ferran posts snaps of himself in luxe and streetwear brands like Gucci and Rich Boys. He’s amassed 600K followers. (Andrea herself has 6.6 million, and Ali has 571K.)
Their lives have changed dramatically since joining YouTube–and last but certainly not least, there’s one more change coming up. They’re soon adding a new royal to their family–a baby expected to arrive in July.
Check out our chat with them below.
Tubefilter: Tell us a little about each of you! Where are you from? What did you do in the days before YouTube?
The Royalty Family: Andrea was born in Cali, Colombia. She always had a dream of being an actress and inspiring others in this world. She told all her friends that one day she would end up in Hollywood and do something spectacular. People laughed; however, she believed. Today, Andrea lives in the Hollywood Hills and inspires millions of people all around the world. Ali was born in Beirut, Lebanon. He migrated to California at the age of three. He grew up being shy and insecure, but he decided it was time to make a difference in this world because he knew deep down inside he had the ability to inspire and make people laugh. The two immigrants came together to change the world little by little.
Tubefilter: What made you decide to launch a YouTube channel? What do you think YouTube offers you, as content creators, to help you grow your platform?
TRF: We always felt like we were such a unique, diverse family. Our days were always filled with love, laughter, and sometimes craziness moments. After being dedicated and loyal users of YouTube, we decided “why not” showcase who we are on this amazing platform. YouTube gave us the opportunity to inspire people worldwide. It gave us the opportunity to be creative and express ourselves in the way we wanted. With such a user-friendly platform, we were hooked on constantly creating content, and it became our love and passion. Thank you, YouTube…
Tubefilter: You’re very open about the fact that you’re a blended family. Why is this aspect of your lives so important to share with viewers?
TRF: We want to show the world that it’s okay to be different. Life is not meant to be perfect. People don’t have to have the same ethnicity, religion, or color to be together. All we truly care about is love. We hope we can teach the world that as well.
Tubefilter: You have a rigorous upload schedule. Walk us through the average day. Is YouTube your full-time job? What else do you get up to?
TRF: We wake up around 6 a.m. We get Ferran ready for school, then head to the gym, because our health is very important for us. We try to shoot every day for YouTube. If we aren’t shooting, we are planning our next videos. This job isn’t easy; it definitely requires a lot of attention on a regular basis. We love the challenge, we love the opportunity, and we are blessed to be able to rise to the occasion. We are blessed to say this is our full-time job and we wouldn’t want it any other way.
Tubefilter: When did you get your first check for online video revenue? How much was it for?
TRF: We started YouTube about a year and a half ago. When we checked our first month of revenue, it was about $8,000, and we were so blessed. This was about September in 2018. The money has been amazing since then, but what grew the most was the passion for creating content.
Tubefilter: What was that Semaphore Moment for you—the first time you realized you were a professional creator?
TRF: On Jan. 22, 2019, we hit one million subscribers. A month later, we received the 1M plaque. We all sat down and looked at it, and it hit us: we are really entertaining millions of people across the world. It’s a great feeling and honor.
Tubefilter: Have you noticed your audience growing lately? What are you doing to bring in viewers and build your platform?
TRF: We have been blessed to be growing at such a rapid rate. We feel that being organic and transparent with people has allowed us to feel relatable to them.
Tubefilter: What are the specific challenges and joys of running a family channel? Why do you think people are so drawn to family content?
TRF: The biggest challenge is to realize that many people are expecting content on a regular basis; however, we have our times when we are sick, tired, or even want to go on vacation.
Tubefilter: How do you monetize your YouTube platform outside of AdSense?
TRF: We have been fortunate to have amazing brand partnerships such as L’Oréal, Google Pixel, Bed Bath & Beyond, and more. We also have developed merch and continue to release more regularly.
Tubefilter: How do you decide what to film next? Do you keep track of what’s trending on YouTube?
TRF: We have a full list of ideas ready to go constantly. Throughout the days, we regularly get ideas and write them down. Being organized and planning helps us shoot more efficiently.
Tubefilter: Who else works with you behind the scenes?
TRF: We have one editor, one assistant, and a videographer.
Tubefilter: What’s next for you? What are you building toward?
TRF: We are hoping to continue the success, and we are excited about our upcoming baby, who will be born on July 1, god willing.
Semaphore Business Solutions provides customized services for clients across the country, taking an all-encompassing approach to meet all your financial needs. Whether you’re a veteran YouTube entertainer or just starting out, managing your business correctly is crucial to avoiding major headaches down the road. The sooner you call us, the sooner we can help you put a plan into motion to grow, as well as to keep more money in your pocket, with advanced tax strategies. Semaphore Brand Solutions has established itself as a leading influencer marketing agency representing our exclusive talent relationships and services to the most recognized brands and agencies.