Welcome to YouTube Millionaires, where we profile channels that have recently crossed the one million subscriber mark. There are channels crossing this threshold every week, and each creator has a story to tell about YouTube success. Read previous installments here.
Even when Caroline Manning is getting up at 4:35 a.m., she’s cheerful.
One of the 16-year-old creator’s most popular videos documents a typical (in non-pandemic times, that is) busy morning that involves getting up long before the sun and hitting the gym, then heading to school. It’s a routine that’d have many people grumping and groaning, but Manning’s upload is full of good-natured yawning and bright captions.
That video is just one of more than 300 on Manning’s channel, but it encapsulates the feeling of her content: When she commits to a project–training for cheerleading, writing a song, filming a YouTube video–she always tries to do it with joy.
Manning didn’t intend to become a content creator, joyful or otherwise. She originally joined YouTube because she was looking for an easy way to send family members videos of herself singing the national anthem at sporting events. But uploading to YouTube was more fun than she’d anticipated, and when she began writing and performing songs of her own as a hobby, it was natural to take those to YouTube, too. Exploring the site led her to fellow creator Hannah Meloche and to lifestyle content–and Manning hasn’t looked back since.
Nowadays, her content is a mix of original songs, including a music video she recently produced with Meloche (below), and lifestyle content chronicling her adventures as a full-time high schooler and creator. She uploads at least three videos per week, nets around 8 million views per month, and, of course, has more than one million subscribers.
Check out our chat with her below.
Tubefilter: How does it feel to hit one million subscribers? What do you have to say to your fans?
Caroline Manning: Hitting one million subscribers has felt like a dream that has never ended. I am beyond grateful and blessed for the many opportunities I’ve been blessed with, and it all comes back to my amazing family on YouTube, the MannFam!
Tubefilter: Tell us a little about you! Where are you from? What’s your favorite subject in school? What else do you get up to outside of YouTube?
CM: Hi there! My name is Caroline Manning. I am a 16-year-old YouTuber based in Dripping Springs, Texas. I love singing, writing original music, and cheerleading. My favorite subject in school definitely has to be geometry or anything math-related. Although it can be challenging sometimes, I find math to be very fun to solve and useful as I get older. Hanging out with my friends and family is a top priority for me. I love to be surrounded by supportive and loving people!
Tubefilter: What made you decide to launch a YouTube channel? Are there any creators who inspired you?
CM: When I was 12 years old, I started singing the National Anthem at The University of Texas at Austin for their sporting events, and wanted to post the videos of me singing for my family members to see. YouTube was the platform I decided to post my singing on, and it originally started as a hobby. As time went by, I kept posting on YouTube, and became inspired by one of my now close friends, Hannah Meloche! She and I met up this past December and wrote/produced a Christmas song and music video! Anything is possible if you put your mind to it!
Tubefilter: You put out three videos a week–which would be a lot for a full-time creator, not to mention someone who’s creating while going to school full-time! What does the average day look like for you? How long does it take you to write and record songs, and to film/upload a lifestyle video?
CM: Posting about three times a week can definitely be very stressful. However, I’ve learned to keep my priorities in check because when I put my mind to something, I always follow through and commit.
The average day in my life looks like this (before COVID-19 🙁):
- Wake up at 4:35 a.m. every morning
- Shower and go to school
- Edit while I’m at school during any free time
- Come home and finish editing a video or film a new video (takes about one hour)
- Eat dinner
- Finish up any homework (takes about 10 minutes because I finish all my work at school)
- Plan out the next day in my journal and set goals/video plans (takes about 20 minutes)
Tubefilter: What got you interested in songwriting? How has being a music artist affected your YouTube channel?
CM: Songwriting has always been something prominent in my life. For as long as I can remember, I’ve been writing music because there’s so many words in my head that just sound better as lyrics. At the age of eight, I would record myself singing original songs I wrote and submit them to an annual contest my school participated in. The same goes for every talent show, local swim meets, sports events, military events, etc.
Being a music artist has affected my channel immensely. As much as I love creating lifestyle content, the root of my channel honestly comes from my music because that’s what REALLY connects with my subscribers.
Tubefilter: How have you been growing your audience? Have you tweaked your content at all since joining YouTube, or have you kept it steady and figured that if you filmed it, viewers would come?
CM: I owe it all to my family, friends, and my team at Select Management Group for helping me progress my audience and channel. I wouldn’t have been able to have the motivation and grit that I have without all of the support and encouragement that I have now. I do feel that I’ve had to tweak my channel a little bit. Not drastically, but I’m very aware of what I say in my videos and double-check them to make sure I am always demonstrating inclusivity and showing my subscribers that everyone is welcome and my channel is a safe place!
Tubefilter: We feel like it’s probably weird to do this without mentioning the pandemic, so how are things going with social distancing? Are you still attending school? Do you find you have more time for YouTube?
CM: It’s devastating to see what is happening right now. I feel so lucky that my family and friends haven’t been personally impacted by the pandemic. Social distancing has its cons; however, I have found ways to cope through the situation. I’ve realized that you can truly find positive light in any situation. I believe that if we use this time now, when the world is in silence and we have time to think and give ourselves some rest, we can come out of this stronger than ever.
I am currently still attending school, but everything has shifted to online services. I honestly love the online aspect of school. The only thing I don’t love is not being able to see all of my friends–but learning-wise, things have been much easier, in my opinion. There has been much more free time for YouTube, but at the same time, it’s been challenging, because the content you can film is very limited since we can’t go anywhere.
Tubefilter: What’s your favorite part of making content on YouTube?
CM: My favorite part of making content for YouTube is the feeling of joy I have going into it in every video. One of my biggest promises I made to myself going into YouTube was to never let YouTube get to the point where there’s no more fun or joy in making videos anymore, and it becomes a stress in my life. Creating is such a fun way to express myself, and I wouldn’t change anything that has led to this point for anything!
Tubefilter: What’s next for you and your channel? Any plans looking to the future?
CM: I plan on releasing an album this year and writing much more music in the future. I will also be traveling a lot this year, hopefully when everyone is safe from COVID, and I’m going to be getting more into cinematography and travel diary videos. There will also be many changes as well for me personally, which will be announced on my YouTube channel once the school year is over!
You can add yourself to the ranks of Manning’s more-than-a-million YouTube subscribers at his channel YouTube.com/CarolineManning.