How does David Dobrik make money? Behind the absent YouTube star's many income streams - Dexerto
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How does David Dobrik make money? Behind the absent YouTube star’s many income streams

Published: 5/Feb/2021 23:52

by Adam Fitch

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Social media is helping people to forge unfathomable careers as they quickly become the next generation of entertainment stars — perhaps the greatest example of this is David Dobrik. This, of course, can provide a substantial financial return.

The 24-year-old is proof that an unrelenting work ethic and thirst for more can produce incredible results, especially when they’re partnered with a “by any means necessary” approach. From Vine to YouTube to TikTok, Dobrik is an instant success in any medium he decides to tackle next.

The internet sensation was born in Slovakia and moved to Illinois in the United States when he was six years old. It was 2013, at just 17-year-old, when he started his journey in content creation. Surrounding himself with others who shared his drive and penchant for entertainment, it wasn’t a question of if he was going to make it big — it was a question of when.

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Fast forward to February 2021 and Dobrik hasn’t uploaded to his main YouTube channel in nine months, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t hard at work. Being hit drastically by the “Adpocalypse” resulted in him losing over $270,000 per month and now it appears as if he has turned his attention to other platforms. Considering the dramatic loss of income, many will be questioning where he makes money these days. Let’s find out.

Content

Heath Hussar Surprised by David Dobrik
David Dobrik
David Dobrik surprise his friend Heath Hussar by gifting him a Lamborghini in a video.

You shouldn’t be surprised to see a section dedicated to content, that is how he got his start after all. Between his two personal accounts, he has 19m subscribers on YouTube — though the income that’s generated through these channels are much lower than many would anticipate.

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Though he’s perhaps best known for his vlogs, VIEWS with David Dobrik and Jason Nash has a healthy audience. The podcast sees the two creators give an inside look into the other content they create, with advertisers paying a pretty penny to be shouted out at the start of each episode.

Completing the holy trinity of the modern-day content creation toolkit, he also streams on Twitch. Subscriptions and donations can amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars for major figures on the platform, and that won’t be any different for Dobrik. He loves video games and frequently streams his sessions, giving fans a real-time experience of what it’s like to game with him.

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David Dobrik Justin Bieber
David Dobrik
David Dobrik shocked fans by picking them up with Justin Bieber hidden in the back of the car.

He loves to be everywhere. There’s a lot of attention to be garnered across one platform, but if you really want to be prominent on the internet then you need to be active across many. Dobrik knows this and makes the most of it.

Not only is he on Snapchat and TikTok, he’s getting paid from both of the platforms. His inclusion in the $2 billion TikTok creator fund has been a source of contention and controversy, though he’s been able to take part in the Snapchat Spotlight initiative without large-scale criticism. Both can provide notable revenue for top creators.

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Business ventures

David Dobrik modelling his merchandise
David Dobrik
David Dobrik has numerous apparel lines available in his merchandise store.

Merchandise is an obvious avenue for creators to go down so you’ll not be surprised to know that Dobrik also leans heavily on this particular stream. Launching a “To the moon” line as a timely response to the recent GameStop and Dogecoin trends shows how effective his team is, no doubt he’ll have profited well from a trend he didn’t start.

Alongside his friend and frequent collaborator Jason Nash, Dobrik has made money from touring. Podcasts, prior to the global health situation, began to follow in the footsteps of musical acts and comedians by taking their shows on the road. This is exactly what Dobrik and Nash did with their podcast. It’s a good opportunity to make money not only from ticket sales but in-venue merchandise transactions.

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Dispo, previously known as David’s Disposables, is a mobile app that treats photos as disposables — adding a grainy, retro effect to the pictures users capture and delaying when they can view them. The venture raised $4m from an investment round led by Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian and charges for in-app purchases, this is where any revenue is generated.

David Dobrik and Jaden Smith
Dispo
David Dobrik and Jaden Smith pose together, captured by the former’s Dispo app.

Considering he’s big in online media, moving into other forms of content makes a whole heap of sense for Dobrik. Dodgeball Thunderdome is a game show on Discovery that’s hosted by the former Viner, which no doubt will see him paid handsomely for his involvement. The movie business isn’t void of his presence either, you just have to look at his (albeit animated) appearance in 2019’s The Angry Birds Movie 2 as Axel to see a major company making use of his star power among young consumers.

In October 2020, his team filed a trademark for Doughbrik’s Pizza, meaning he’s one step closer to opening his own pizza place — not too dissimilar to MrBeast Burger. Dobrik even has his own perfume, aptly named David’s Perfume. There have been two fragrances released so far, both of which are available for purchase online.

It’s clear that Dobrik’s view extends far beyond content. Considering he’s his own IP in the world of content, it’s hard to run this side of his business without being present. When running a perfume business, a merchandise store, or a pizza establishment under his name, other people can keep those ticking. That’s where the money will really be generated in the future for the internet star, so long as he launches great products and services and markets them well.