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.
When Chase met Melo, he knew there was something special about her.
He’d been in social media for years, first on Instagram, where he built and sold pages, and then on Vine. Vine was where he figured out short-form comedy is his jam–but he also likes longer, dramatic skits, and it was while casting for one of those skits in 2017 that he found Melo.
Subscribe to get the latest creator news
“I saw something in her,” he says. “[S]he had just started filming, but that was a year I was trying to be more expansive, and then I asked her to do a dramatic role in a short film that I was making, even though she had just started acting. She was great. She was able to bring the role to life and cry in the scene that was needed to cry.”
They filmed together through 2017, ended up taking a break, then reconnected in 2019 and began dating in 2020. From there, it’s been full steam ahead. Short-form video surged at just the right time for them, and now, three years later, they have their own TikTok accounts, Instagram presences, and a shared YouTube channel, Chase & Melo Shorts. Across all their accounts, they share mainly comedic short-form clips that focus on their life as a couple–but they’re also getting back into long-form on YouTube, where they’re around 150,000 subscribers away from a million.
Going into 2024, they’re hoping to keeping “seeing the expansion on what we can build,” Chase says. “Just doing bigger collaborations and doing what we’re doing at a higher scale.”
Check out our chat with them below.
@ichvse Man who cooked this!! @Naturally Melonie @The Creatives @J Lewis ♬ original sound – Chase
This interview has been edited for length and clarity.
Tubefilter: For these features, I love to give people who already know you a deeper insight into what you’re like behind the camera, but then also introduce new people to you. As a baseline, just imagine that somebody is reading this and they’ve never seen your stuff, they don’t know who you are. Give me a little bit of introduction about the two of you, where you’re from, how you met, and how this whole social media thing started.
Melo: Okay, cool. You can start off.
Chase: All right. My name is Chase. We met in New York. I was doing skits in New York back in 2017. Then I reached out to her to do skits, and that’s how we met in 2017–through filming, through social media. Then we were filming together since 2017 and then took a little break and then started re-filming with each other again at the end of 2019, and then became best friends. That eventually formed into a relationship in 2020. We’ve been dating for a little over three years now, and then we have been collabing together for six years on videos.
Tubefilter: How did you both originally get into doing social media?
Chase: I’ve been in social media for over 10 years. I’ve been in social media since around Instagram started. I’ve gone through many phases of social media. I wasn’t always on the personal video side of social media, before I was on the business side. I used to build pages and sell shout-outs and sell pages on Instagram back in 2012, 2013, 2014, all through up until 2015, ’16. I started on Vine in 2014. That’s when I got introduced to video.
Melo: I started maybe seven years ago. I started with hair. I started doing hair videos first. Then I got over that and started doing Dominican-related videos. Then I started my own character of a mom, and I would play different characters in one video. Then he was the first person to reach out to me to collab on videos, and like he said, that’s when we started working together. 2020, that’s when I quit my full-time job and started doing the creative stuff full-time. Yes, I’ve been doing it since then, pretty much about like six, seven years, I would say.
Tubefilter: How did things change once the two of you became collaborators?
Chase: It was great from the start. I feel like we had instant chemistry, almost. I saw something in her back then in 2017, because she had just started filming, but that was a year I was trying to be more expansive, and then I asked her to do a dramatic role in a short film that I was playing, even though she had just started acting. She was great. She was able to bring the role to life and cry in the scene that was needed to cry. I feel like it’s always just been instant chemistry, and it’s just developed over the years.
Melo: Yes. I feel like once we really started taking it seriously and collabing in the sense of being really consistent, which I would say 2021, 2022, I feel like we’ve both grown so much and elevated so much in our style and quality of video, scripting of videos and all that. I think things have just gotten better as they go.
Tubefilter: What prompted you to get more serious about it in 2020, 2021?
Chase: 2020, it was just easier to be more consistent, because the world was shut down. Because I was already like, “Social media is a job of mine,” so it was just easier to be more consistent starting then. Then we moved to Atlanta in 2021, at the beginning of 2021 in January, to start actually being consistent and to start our consistency and building something for real. We moved from New York to Atlanta.
Tubefilter: Yes, I hear Atlanta is a massively growing creator city right now.
Chase: Yes, it’s a lot of creators down here. We find new people every day down here. We’ll figure out that more people live in Atlanta, creative-wise.
Tubefilter: Do you have any insight into why it’s growing so rapidly? What made you guys decide to move there?
Chase: We have a friend down here that we came and visited and he introduced us to multiple people down here in the creative circle, and we just liked what was going on there. It was just a weird time in life, and we were just both looking for something different, I guess. What do you think?
Melo: I think Atlanta has a big film industry.
Chase: Oh, yes.
Melo: It definitely has a big film industry. That was one of the things that called my attention towards it, like, “There has to be something going on there. There’s so many films that are filmed down here.” When I was going through my transition of leaving my full-time job and figuring out what I want to do, I was open, so the idea of film…I felt like Atlanta was one of the best options when it came to that.
2022, I feel like we got more consistent, because 2021 was such a big transitional year. That’s when we left New York and we were trying to figure Atlanta out.
Chase: We were still consistent while doing that.
Chase: It was like more YouTube consistency than it was Instagram consistency, I think, in 2021.
@naturallymelonie fool proof remedy 😌🤌🏽 @Chase ♬ original sound – Naturally Melonie
Tubefilter: Got you. You guys are growing quickly on YouTube.
Tubefilter: I’m curious about that. YouTube Shorts seems to have worked out really well for you.
Chase: Yes. The YouTube Shorts, we started in August of 2021. We had separate YouTube pages that we were working on and doing long form skits consistently at the beginning of 2021. Then for our short videos, we just combined them onto our couples account. Starting in August 2021, we started doing long-form skits and combining our Shorts there. Instead of us having two separate YouTubes, we just combined.
Tubefilter: I’m curious to hear how the creative process works for the two of you in terms of coming up with videos. Do you do any scripting? Does one of you tend to do one thing more than the other? How does it work for you behind the scenes?
Melo: I feel like we get our ideas from just everyday life and just bouncing ideas off and other people’s experiences. When it came to our long-form YouTube sketches, we definitely did script it out. We would come up with ideas where we would take turns writing the scripts, so we would split that. When it comes to our Shorts, it’s more lax. We’ll come up with the ideas and then think of the general angles and shots that we want. Yes, it just really depends, really.
Chase: Yes, the Shorts is more improv and we just have beats of what points we want to hit. It’s a lot of bouncing ideas off each other and just living everyday life and putting a dramatic spin towards everyday life.
Tubefilter: Do you have a set production schedule where you’re aiming to put out one video every day, or is it just sort of, like you said, it’s based on real life, so it’s what comes to you?
Chase: I feel like we try to at least post on Instagram. We try to post between Sundays and Thursdays. Then the other platforms, we post so much. We have our separate pages on Instagram, but outside of Instagram, we have our collaborative pages on Facebook and YouTube, so it’s easier for us to post daily there, I feel like, or more there because she has her videos and I have my videos, and so when we go to the couples page, it’s more and it’s able to be stretched out to the daily aspect, I feel like.
Melo: Yes. Because we also have our vlog channel on YouTube. There, since it’s a new channel, we try to where we are posting at least once a week.
Chase: Once every Sunday.
Melo: Yes, but then our Shorts channel, we definitely post at least three, four times a week. It’s just every platform is different, but we do put out at least a piece of content on each platform every week.
Tubefilter: What has been your favorite part of this whole online experience? Clearly, you both have been on social media for a long time, but over the last couple of years, I feel like it seems to have ramped up for both of you. I’m just curious what you’ve really enjoyed about being on social media over the last couple of years.
Melo: I’ve really enjoyed the ability to create and put my creativity out there and collab with other creators and collaborate together, and just be in that creative space because it was something that I really wanted to jump into a few years ago, so I’m really glad that I did take that jump. Being able to create and also collabing and building a community with other like-minded people or people who just enjoy the content, yes, I would say those things.
Chase: Just being able to be able to create and being in a creative space is huge. Being able to see the results of the work that you put in as well, it’s great. We’re not super attached to the numbers of things, but we do see the growth of how we’ve been expanding over the years. It’s a satisfying kind of like, oh, we’re not doing this for no reason, people actually like our work, type thing.
Melo: The growth has been nice to see too, just also in the quality of work too, how much we’ve grown in that way.
Chase: Oh, yes. To go back and look at old videos compared to now.
Tubefilter: That’s one of the perks. I talked to a lot of creators who were like, “Yes, I’ve been on YouTube for 6, 7, even 10 years, and I privated all my old videos because I can’t look at them anymore.” It’s like, no, it’s such a good record of your growth, and it shows other people, other creators where you started and how you got here. I always find it really interesting when creators look back at their old stuff.
Chase: I see the old stuff, but I don’t know if I could private the old stuff because it is just a time period, but it is definitely a cringe thing sometimes.
Melo: It’s part of the journey.
Tubefilter: It’s part of the journey, that’s right. I know you said you don’t fixate on the numbers a lot, but I was curious if there’s any videos, any one video or any genre or type of video that you notice really has contributed to your growth? Did you have one that went super viral, or do you have types of videos you know your audience likes?
Melo: We do a lot of comedy, so definitely genre-wise, I would say comedy. Then when we started collabing, a lot of people really enjoyed the couple stuff, the couple content.
Chase: Dora, people loved it.
Melo: Oh, yes, the Dora. I feel like we’ve had just different trends that people start following us for.
@ichvse First & last time 😒 @Naturally Melonie @Whitney Code @Tatiana Le’Joy @nesfinesseee ♬ original sound – Chase
Tubefilter: I’d love to hear a little bit more about your audience, if you happen to know demographic or age ranges you’re hitting.
Chase: I feel like for us, it’s actually super 50/50. If anything, it’s maybe a little bit more woman-dominant, like 55% maybe, for me at least, but it’s ages between 18 to 45-ish.
Melo: I would say mine is a little more women-dominated, so I would say like 60/40, for sure. Also hit those age ranges 18 to 45, depending on the platform, but because Snapchat has a younger audience. I would say 13 and up.
Tubefilter: Very interesting. A wide age range across platforms, for sure. What are you guys looking forward to in the next six months or a year or so in terms of creating together?
Chase: Just seeing the expansion on what we can build and what we get to. Just doing bigger collaborations and doing what we’re doing at a higher scale, I guess, at a bigger scale.
Melo: I’m excited to see the growth and where it takes us, for sure, because I’ve seen so much growth already, so I’m just excited for where else we’re going.
Tubefilter: You’ve each hit a million on TikTok, and you’re very close to hitting a million on YouTube. When you hit a million on TikTok, was it just another day and we keep going, or what was that experience like?
Chase: I feel like when you’re in it, you don’t really realize what’s happening. It’s just like, you just keep going, you just keep going. You celebrate the wins and you celebrate the milestones, I guess, but it’s like, you just keep going. You don’t get to these places and stop.
Tubefilter: I know you said it’s not really about the numbers for you guys.
Chase: Yes. Because the numbers, they fluctuate, so you can’t get so fixated on them. They fluctuate so crazy with the waves of social media. Getting fixated on them is bad practice and not good mentally when you’re going through it, you just keep going, honestly, that’s the only thing. Honestly, when you hit something big or just acknowledge it, and then it’s like, okay.
I feel like we’re always like, “What’s next? What are we filming?” We always have something else to edit. It’s the social media hamster wheel, almost. I don’t want to say it’s a hamster wheel, but it’s kind of what it is. As we’re putting out something, we’re probably editing something else or filming something else. I’ve been a bunch of times that we’ve paused on editing or paused on filming to post something.
Tubefilter: Do you guys ever struggle with burnout at all?
Melo: I was going to say we do acknowledge those big milestones, but it could be wild how you’re so in it that you don’t notice it. There’s definitely times we have to pause and take a step back like, wow, we have been growing, because sometimes it’s easy to just let those things pass. They become so normalized almost. It’s funny how the brain works, but it’s true. It’s like, “What’s next?” Because we’re still creators and we still got to create, so it is kind of like, “Okay, what’s next?”
When it comes to burnout, I definitely would say that I have experienced burnout, and there’s times where I just have to pause and regroup, recalibrate, and refresh so I can get ideas. There’s times where I felt like I wasn’t getting ideas, and I think it’s because I was trying to do too much and I wasn’t giving myself that grace. With time, the longer we’ve been in it, I feel like we’ve learned to have a better balance between the work and rest because you can get lost in the hustle and the work of it and forget to give yourself that break too.
Chase: With burnout, yes, we definitely had to take breaks sometimes. That’s why I said on Instagram, we post Sunday to Thursday, and then I feel like we do a good job balancing at night, or when we’re done filming, we’re done filming. Or when we’re done being creative I feel like we’re just done being creative. It’s hard sometimes. I’m not going to say that we stick to doing that, because we definitely do edit late night at times, but it is a balance. Because there is some days we really just don’t do anything. On Sundays, I really probably don’t do anything.
Tubefilter: Yes, that kind of break is good. It’s good to hear that you guys take days off because I feel like that’s a very underrated thing in our industry, taking days off.
Melo: And not feeling guilty about it.
Tubefilter: That’s right. Do you have any advice for creators who are looking to get into our space, especially couples?
Melo: Just do it. I feel like a lot of the time, the biggest hurdle is to start because it’s scary to feel like you have to be– Once you put yourself out there, that can be scary. Just do it, I would say, is the biggest thing. Because even in the beginning for me, there was a whole year where I told myself, “Oh, I’m going to start. I’m going to start. I’m going to start,” and I wouldn’t start. Then one day I just put the camera in front of me and I started recording, and I edited and I posted it. It’s like you have to force yourself to do it because sometimes we get in our own way. That’s my biggest thing, I would say.
Chase: Just starting is the hugest thing, like she said. Then for a couple of creators, I feel like when you’re working together, having a balance in the work, I guess. One person can’t be editing and writing everything. I feel like you both have to learn a little bit in the aspects of what it turns to create for yourself when it comes to editing and when it comes to writing and producing and filming and stuff. We both know how to shoot. We both know how to edit. We both know how to come up with ideas. It’s not just strained on one person. You both have to put in the effort to learn something so it’s spread out work. It’s more spread out and not one person is getting overwhelmed with trying to do everything.
Melo: You’re wearing a lot of hats already, so it’s nice to be able to balance it out together. Then I would also say finding your own groove when it comes to content. You don’t have to be like anyone else or feel like you have to follow certain trends because that’s what’s going viral. I feel like just finding your own style and finding what you like and what brings you happiness. Enjoying creating the work is also important, enjoying your own work.
Chase: I would say too trying to create original content as well, I feel like that would help you expand yourself and differentiate yourself as a creator rather than just doing regular TikTok sounds. This is personally how I feel like. If you’re doing a sound that 200,000 other people have done already and heard, then you’re not really– People don’t know you for you or you don’t have something original to offer people to follow you or the brands to reach out, and be like, “We want this person to represent our brand because we know what they’re about. We know the type of videos that they make.”
If you’re doing the same videos that a hundred thousand other people have already made, then you can’t really differentiate yourself from the pack, and that’s what you have to do to be different on social media.
Tubefilter: Perfect. For my last question, I’m going to put you both on the spot, and I’m going to ask each of you what your favorite thing is about collaborating with the other person.
Chase: The laughs, I guess. The bloopers that nobody sees, I feel like I would say that, because we really are best friends. The bloopers of in-between shots and shots that don’t work and, I don’t know, it’s just a lot of laughter. That’s fun.
Melo: I would say getting your perspective on things is also really nice, because you could see something one way, but it could be elevated just through your own perspective and stuff. It’s just fun to collaborate for different reasons.