She reached 61K subscribers & 17.4M views with her beauty ASMR channel

Mar 12 2024
Case Studies

Julia is the creator of ASMRxBABEE, a YouTube channel in the beauty ASMR niche that took just six months to get to 20,000 subscribers and now has over 61,000 subscribers.

Learn how Julia grew the channel while still having a corporate 9-5, how the channel makes money, and her practical advice for newer YouTubers 👇

Key Takeaways

  • You have to post at least 10 videos before you have an idea of what does well. You can plan and plan but if you don’t have historical information or metrics or an audience, you don’t know what to look for.
  • It took one day to get the first 100 subscribers, one month to get 1,000 and six months to get 20,000
  • Most growth came from posting consistently, being a newer ASMR creator (novelty appeal), getting help from & being promoted by a 100K subscriber ASMR channel, and having a few viral videos
  • The channel makes most of its money from website memberships (75%). The remaining 25% comes from AdSense, sponsorships and custom video requests.
  • Be realistic about how much you can do. She has a corporate job and treats that as her career. She creates content mostly on Friday nights, weekends and before/after work. Know what you're capable of; start with what you can maintain for 1-5 years.

Why did you start ASMRxBABEE?

I loved makeup and experimenting with it; I started a channel when I was 16 (which is JuliaXBabee) and chose YouTube because I loved the video aspect. 

As a teenager, I didn’t fully understand marketing and monetization and I didn’t have a ton of time but I built up a following of 20,000 subscribers over the years.

As I got older, I didn’t feel like I was a makeup artist and everyone and their mother was a beauty influencer. So I stopped.

A few years later, I met my college roommate, Lily. She had an ASMR channel with over 100,000 subscribers at the time (but she doesn’t make videos any more). 

I had watched ASMR long before I met Lily but I saw that she was actually making the videos. And then I was like “Okay, I kind of miss YouTube”. I have to give her credit for helping me gain the confidence to do ASMR.

With my videos, I also wanted to help people relax and be a “big sister” to those who didn’t have one. 

How did you get started?

For my first few videos, I used my iPhone and the iPhone wired earphones (with the mic you could talk into) because I didn’t have a Blue Yeti mic yet.

I remember my biggest thing was “Do I know what I’m doing with this?”. So I definitely relied on my friend, Lily, to help me and hype me up.

I thought to myself, “I’m nervous so just get your first video out and see how that does and then go from there”

You have to post like 10 videos before you even have a remote idea of maybe what does well. I think you can plan and plan but if you don’t have historical information or metrics or an audience, you don’t know what to look for.

I knew that the brand was me. So I was just going to talk about what I liked like makeup or fashion and just whisper about it. Almost like a 2.0 of my old makeup channel. I didn’t plan much; I wanted to feel it out and have fun with it.

How & when did you get to 10, 100, 1000 subscribers (etc) and to where you are currently?  

The appeal of being a newer ASMR creator, posting consistently, getting help from and being promoted by [my friend] Lily, and having a few viral videos, pretty much explained my growth.

First 100 subscribers (1 day after first video)

I got 360 subscribers on the first day, after my first video.

For that, I’m just going to give credit to my friend Lily because she had 100,000 subscribers, and her promoting me meant some of her audience was going to come on over to me. Especially since my videos were very aligned with her audience.

First 1,000 subscribers (1 month after first video)

For my first thousand subscribers, Lily promoting me still had a significant impact but I also made sure I didn’t take that initial momentum for granted. 

I knew that the consistency of posting was important; I posted a video every few days and it took me about a month to get those first thousand.

First 20,000 subscribers (6 months after first video)

My first video to do really well was about two months after I started posting. It was “My Everyday Makeup Routine” and it got 180K views whereas all my other videos were in the 14-20K range.

That was helpful although I will say, if I have a video that goes viral and people subscribe immediately based on that video, those people might not end up becoming engaged followers.

So, I'm almost like, "Hey, don't subscribe to me unless you're really vibing with me," because I don't want subscribers who don't watch my content.

I’ve also just made posting consistently on Sundays my brand. My channel header says “New videos every Sunday” and the first thing I say in every video is “Happy Sunday” so I think that it’s part of my brand now.

I want people to feel like “Sundays are the best. That’s when Julia posts”

I also think that it’s important to have a social media presence in the places that matter. I probably should’ve made a TikTok earlier than I did. But I didn’t want to jump into it too quickly or commit to platforms that I don’t have the bandwidth for. 

I work a corporate job so I just know I can’t be in 57 different places at once and have them be what they should be. 

The next big jump for the channel came five months after my first video. I did a (collab) video with my roommate Lily and that did really well.

First 50,000 subscribers (3 years after first video)

In November 2020, I made a controversial video that went super viral which is now private. I don’t want to say too much about it other than I got a lot of hate for it but it ended up being my most successful video.

I hit 50,000 subscribers in early August 2021. Things kind of slowed down after that.

How much money are you making (and how)?

75% of how I make money is through my pay-gated website (memberships) using Fourthwall. I’m really proud of how I did that; I planned a very specific strategy for it.

AdSense is probably number two. On any given month, I’m making between $650 - 850 per month.

Sponsorships are number three. I don’t do sponsored videos every week; there are seasons for it where there are more opportunities presented to me (like around spring and the fall).

I recently started making money from TikTok (with their Creativity Program Beta) but it’s much less than YouTube. I remember making three videos at least 60 seconds long (and usually longer) per day for a month averaging 20-25,000 views per video and I only got $225 for it.

I get a few custom video requests every now and then. I offer 60-second, 3-minute, and 5-minute videos and only do around one or two videos a month. Which is great because I usually don’t have the bandwidth for them.

What are three things you wish you knew when you first started?

🗓️ You have to post a lot in the beginning. You’re not going to grow a channel by posting inconsistently. Bare minimum, post once a week but realistically post 2-3 times a week.

👥 Know what type of stuff you’re going to make and who your audience is. If you make random videos and one goes viral and you don’t make other content like that, you’re going to have way lower engagement. 

⚖️ Be realistic about your bandwidth. It’s okay if you don’t have a ton of time; just be real about how much you can do. Know what you’re capable of - start with one step at a time with what’s realistic and something you can maintain for a year or 5 years.

What have been your biggest problems and frustrations throughout your journey?

📊 The ups and downs of growth. Being on YouTube for a while and then starting to get to the point where you’re not at your peak and you’re like “What am I doing wrong? What can I improve?”

I think a decent part of the journey is out of our control and doing the best you can is not going to guarantee you’re going to jump back to the level you were at.

⌚ Wishing I had more time to be able to post. Whereas all of my friends have jobs where they can shut off their computer after finishing work, I’m like “I gotta get content. I gotta get this vlog out” etc.

What does a day in your life look like?

I work a corporate 9-5 job that I care very strongly about and that’s my career to me. I’m still very passionate about YouTube but nothing is promised with a career in social media. I like the consistency and structure of my 9-5 in addition to the creativity of my ASMR channel. 

So I do have to be strategic around timing when I create content.

For the most part, I film my videos about a week in advance on a Friday or Saturday before I go out to dinners, bars, etc (since that’s when I’m most likely to look my best). 

Editing-wise, I like to do that before or after work or maybe Saturday mornings/afternoons.

I’m just kind of always plotting and planning when I need to film. My day is all me juggling my social life, husband, website, YouTube, corporate job, and things like that, and hoping I don’t drop any one of them.

Where can we find out more about you? And is there anything else you’d like to add?

My YouTube, website, and TikTok. I also have an Instagram where I post my personal life. 

YouTube is fun but you have to be super passionate about it. Make sure you prioritise your education and the real world and don’t get too caught up in the Internet.

Get the best YouTube advice in 5 minutes per week

Just enter your email below and you'll get a weekly 5-minute email packed with key lessons from successful YouTubers.