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YouTubers are entrepreneurs too – and they should be encouraged

CPA Australia 3 mins read
Gavan Ord, Business and Investment Policy Lead, CPA Australia.

20 March 2024

YouTubers are entrepreneurs too – and they should be encouraged

  • The government should be promoting to young Australians the benefits of starting their own business - even a YouTube channel or TikTok account.
  • The proportion of businesses owned by under 40s should be tracked and reported - with targets set to increase the percentage and inspire the next generation. 

Young Australians should be encouraged to start their own business or purchase an existing one as part of efforts to improve the nation’s economy, productivity and dynamism – and, yes, YouTube, Instagram and TikTok counts. 

As part of its Federal Budget Submission, CPA Australia is calling on the government to track and report on the age of small business owners, following a new study that shows a clear link between young owners and business success. 

CPA Australia’s 2023-24 Asia-Pacific Small Business Survey found that businesses owned by under 40s are more likely to invest in new technologies, are more likely to innovative, are less risk averse, and ultimately, are more likely to grow.  

Getting more young people into business – and nurturing their entrepreneurial spirit – can only be a good thing for the economy in the long-run, says Gavan Ord, Business and Investment Policy Lead at CPA Australia, 

“Inspiring more young people to start their own business, or purchase an existing one is a crucial part of our economic success,” he said. “Young Aussies today are well-placed to learn the basics of business very quickly – if they are making money from YouTube, Instagram or TikTok, they are effectively a sole trader - even if they hadn’t realised. They are picking up valuable business skills. 

“Not everyone can be YouTube sensation Mr Beast, but the things you could learn from developing and growing a social media account – the digital skills, the creativity and innovation, and exposure to running a business – can be transferred to other business pursuits later in life. Not to mention the life-lessons that hard work, dedication and learning from your mistakes, what works and what doesn’t, can eventually yield rewards. 

“While many of us may not see it, trying to earn money from a social media account can give younger people an early exposure to running a business. The government should therefore embrace the economic potential of so many young people wanting to become YouTube or TikTok stars. Promoting this entrepreneurialism and monitoring it is going to be crucial.” 

Any campaign to encourage more young Australians into business ownership should focus on the primary motivations for doing so, which our research shows as:  

  • Being your own boss  
  • Improved work-life balance 
  • Pursuing a passion or personal interest 

The campaign should also inform and educate aspiring business owners of the key characteristics of high growth small businesses identified from our study, including: 

  • Focusing on customer satisfaction, business strategy and management 
  • Having online sales as an important channel for engaging customers 
  • Using social media to learn about potential customers and competitors 

Such a campaign should also educate young people about how to best respond to the key concerns and challenges of business ownership, such as irregular income, uncertainty over business success, cyber security and attracting and keeping customers. 

The research quoted above comes from CPA Australia’s 15th annual Asia-Pacific Small Business Survey, which tracks small business issues and sentiment in the Asia-Pacific region. A breakdown of outcomes referenced is available on request. 

A link to the full survey results, the Australian summary and infographic, and the characteristics on high-growth small businesses can be found here.

About us:

About CPA Australia   

CPA Australia is Australia’s leading professional accounting body and one of the largest in the world. We have more than 172,000 members in over 100 countries and regions. Our core services include education, training, technical support and advocacy. CPA Australia provides thought leadership on local, national and international issues affecting the accounting profession and public interest. We engage with governments, regulators and industries to advocate policies that stimulate sustainable economic growth and have positive business and public outcomes. Find out more at

Contact details:

Simon Downes, External Affairs Lead, or 0401 461 503


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