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In June 2023, 80 of the 100 most-watched U.S.-based YouTube channels operated primarily on Shorts. But the leaders of the pack were channels that were able to offer both short-form and long-form clips.
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YouTube must be happy: The multiformat approach it has preached is showing results.
For the #1 channel in the U.S. Top 100, the multiformat label is a bit misleading. DaFuq!?Boom! has added long-form content to its mix after breaking out on Shorts, but most of those one-minute-plus clips are compilations of its shorter stuff. No matter what format DaFuq!?Boom! uses, it focuses on one meme in particular: Skibidi Toilet. Its signature brand of potty humor has made it the most-popular U.S.-based channel of the moment. In June, it received 2.9 billion monthly views, so don’t expect it to flush itself from the rankings anytime soon.
The #2 channel in the U.S. Top 100 is more deserving of the multiformat label. CoComelon – Nursery Rhymes has been on YouTube for years, but its owner Moonbug has shown great flexibility and a willingness to adapt to shifting trends. By mixing in Shorts alongside its long-form sing-alongs and nursery rhyme compilations, CoComelon has stayed relevant in the era of vertical videos. In June, it collected 2.3 billion monthly views, which brought its U.S.-leading lifetime total above 163 billion.
The most significant breakout hit of June, MaviGadget, ended up in third place in the U.S. Top 100. The YouTube Shorts hub has been relevant in these rankings for months, but it reached a new echelon of viewership halfway through the year. It moved up three spots in our all-American ranking after collecting 2.08 billion views between June 1 and June 30. That total was good for a 48% month-over-month increase, and for the first time ever, MaviGadget has the top of the U.S. charts in its sights.
BigSchool took fourth place in the U.S. Top 100. Its classroom-set videos, which often bring in characters from other franchises and memes (including some Skibidi Toilet heads), brought in 1.5 billion monthly views in June. Even if BigSchool experiences a traffic dip in July, it will still graduate to a new level of audience engagement by pulling in its ten-millionth subscriber.
Another multiformat channel occupies the #5 spot in this month’s U.S. Top 100. MrBeast is the most-subscribed and most-watched individual creator on YouTube, but even he must incorporate Shorts if he wants to stay near the top of our American ranking. With his usual array of vertical clips and long-form competition videos, the man born Jimmy Donaldson collected 1.3 billion monthly views in our latest count. And that’s just for one of his channels.
In June, the Denver Nuggets defeated the Miami Heat to win the 2023 NBA Finals. As you might expect, basketball’s biggest moment brought big gains to hoops-themed YouTube channels. One such gainer is GD’s Highlights, which reached its high-water mark in the U.S. Top 100.
Here’s the interesting thing: The most-watched videos on GD’s Highlights didn’t come from the NBA Finals. Instead, the longtime YouTube hub (established in 2015) is turning heads by featuring the amateur side of basketball. When you scroll through its library of long-form videos, you’re more likely to find YouTubers like Tristan Jass and The Professor than NBA stars like Nikola Jokic and Giannis Antetokounmpo.
The trends we can see on GD’s Highlights are reflective of the overall state of basketball content. Influencers have become instrumental to the game’s global success, and they are blurring the lines between highlight reels and creator content. Thanks to Jass, The Professor, and their ilk, basketball has become a year-round sport.
The evergreen nature of hardcourt content brings in views year-round, but when the NBA Playoffs pop off between April and June, highlight channels kick into a higher gear. GD’s Highlights got 456.5 million monthly views in June, which was good for a 41% month-over-month increase. Thanks to those gains, the hoops hub reached 59th place in the U.S. Top 100.
There won’t be more NBA action until the fall, but GD’s Highlights will be able to sustain a sizable audience. The success of channels like this one is a reminder for sports leagues: If you want to truly go global, the culture is just as important as the in-game action — if not more.
This month, 80 channels in the Top 100 are primarily active on YouTube Shorts.