A global stage for Europe and European talent
Dec 05, 2023 – minute read
What connects a baker in Bochum, two honest tour guides in Prague and make-up tutorials delivered through song from Milan? They’re all threads in Europe’s rich tapestry of YouTube creators. And a new report from Oxford Economics shows the positive contribution they’re making to the continent’s culture, society and economy.
The research found that, in 2022, YouTube’s creative ecosystem contributed over €5.5 billion to the EU27 GDP and supported more than 150,000 full-time equivalent jobs.
Behind these numbers are the stories of people across Europe, turning their passions and skills into a living by connecting with audiences on YouTube. Many are turning this into real economic impact in their local communities.
Oxford Economics found that 76% of small and medium-sized businesses with a YouTube channel agree that the platform played a role in helping them grow their customer base by reaching new audiences.
“ We have nearly 70 employees…all of that would not have been possible without YouTube.”
Creators like Kiki Aweimer, who first developed her love for baking while helping out in her parent’s cafe. In 2016, Kiki began to share easy to follow recipes, tips and tricks on YouTube, all filmed at home on her husband Hamza’s phone. As her channel’s popularity grew, Kiki began earning revenue through the YouTube Partner Program, enabling her to invest in professional studio capabilities and hire people to help produce even more compelling baking content in a variety of formats.
Fast forward to today and Kikis Kitchen employs nearly 70 people across the channel, her online shop with branded merchandise, and a brick and mortar store and cafe in Bochum, Germany, where customers can try Kiki’s signature “San Sebastian Burnt Cheesecake”. Kiki isn’t stopping there with plans to open stores in Düsseldorf and London.
European creators are also sharing their stories, building communities and shaping society. Oxford Economics found that 70% of creators who earn money from YouTube agree that they identify and feel like they have a place to belong on YouTube. Additionally, 84% of European viewers agree that with YouTube they can hear from diverse communities and/or cultures from around the world.
“ When I started uploading videos on YouTube, there was no one else like me…people of colour in Italy had a strong desire to feel represented, and YouTube provided that platform.”
One example is Italian creator Loretta Grace, who believes that everyone, no matter their gender, age or skin tone, should be able to wear makeup, look their best and raise their self-esteem. That’s why she started Grace On Your Dash after noticing a lack of make-up tutorials in Italian for people with dark skin tones. Leaning into her experience as a singer and actor, Loretta brought a unique flair to her early videos, delivering tutorials and advice through song.
As she built her audience on YouTube, Loretta began sharing personal stories and featuring special guests doing each other’s make-up during the interview. Today, Grace On Your Dash has over 650k subscribers and has become a powerful platform promoting inclusivity and representation in the beauty industry. Reflecting on why her channel took off, Loretta says that there was no one else like her uploading this kind of content when she started, that people of colour in Italy had a strong desire to feel represented, and YouTube provided that platform.
Oxford Economics also found that 7 out of 10 European creators who earn money from YouTube agree that the platform helps them export their content to international audiences they wouldn’t otherwise have access to. And the viewing numbers bear out this cultural export story, with over 65% of watch time on content produced by channels in the EU coming from outside of the bloc.
This global audience of billions is learning about local European culture from creators like Janek Rubeš and Honza Mikulka, who started Honest Guide on YouTube to help tourists to navigate Prague like a local. As you might expect, they post engaging, creative content on the best restaurants, cafes and handy transport routes, but they also steer visitors away from overpriced establishments and tourist scams.
In fact, the first video they uploaded spotlighted a currency exchange tourist trap to avoid. With over 4.3m views, the video eventually helped prompt city officials to take action and shut down the scam. Their open, honest guide to Prague has been so popular that Janek and Honza have been invited to give the Honest Guide treatment to Helsinki, Tallinn, Linz and Krakow for the benefit of their 1.3m subscribers.
The Oxford Economics research underlines that YouTube creators across Europe are having a real and positive impact on their communities, while creating jobs and enriching the lives of a global audience of billions.
Creators like Loretta, Kiki, Janek and Honza are the lifeblood of YouTube and we’re investing in making it the most rewarding place for them and thousands of other European creators. It’s their stories that motivate me and my team every day as we work to make YouTube an even better place to share stories, build businesses, and find community.
Take a look at the new report to find out more about the people and the stories behind the numbers.