YouTube Top 10: Here’s what South Africans were watching in 2018

To round up the year that was, YouTube today released YouTube Rewind – the top trending videos, music videos and ads on the platform in 2018.


To round up the year that was, YouTube today released YouTube Rewind – the top trending videos, music videos and ads on the platform in 2018.

Topping the list of trending (excluding major labels) videos in South Africa this year is a dance cover of the Gqom smash hit ”iWalk Ye Phara” or “Nayi le walk” by DJ Maphorisa.  Shot by award winning cinematographer, Ofentse Mwase, the video features five dancers (Melita, Thato, Odi, Nomasondo, Anele and Mtho) showcasing their entertaining and eclectic dance interpretation of the popular song and walk. Since it was uploaded in April 2018, the video has gone viral and garnered more than 3 million views and 19,000 likes.

Comic relief was in high demand this year, with other trending videos in 2018 (excluding major labels) including Trevor Noah’s farewell to President Zuma- Bidding Farewell to Jacob Zuma! – a 37-minute long compilation of the comedian’s stand up jokes with Msholozi as the subject, which generated more than 2.6 million views since it was first published in February 2018. WHO DIED (episode 147) from the Nigerian comedy act, Marc Angel and Ramscomics’ animated comic series Noko Surviving Januworry episode also featured with the latter generating more than 1 million views.

The shocking News24 video of the game reserve owner who got mauled by a lion in May this year also made the list.

The top trending music video this year is Maroon 5’s Girls like You featuring Cardi B, while Drake has 2 videos in the top 5 for his tracks God’s Plan and Nice For What. Bruno Mars’ Finesse Remix featuring Cardi B is at number 4, and Ariana Grande’s No Tears Left To Cry  is at number 5. Mlindo The Vocalist, the only South African act in the top 10, came in at number 9 with the track AmaBlesser ft. DJ Maphorisa.

YouTube also released the annual YouTube Ads Leaderboard today. The YouTube Ads Leaderboard showcases the top 10 video ads watched in South Africa for the past year, with Samsung South Africa’s Introducing the GalaxyA8 with a camera so good, it lets you be you. [Intro] taking top spot.

The ads ranking is determined using some of YouTube’s strongest signals of viewer choice – number of views within the country, view rate (how much of an ad people choose to watch), and percentage of organic views versus paid views.

The top trending videos on YouTube for 2018 are based on views, shares, comments, likes and more. YouTube Rewind brings together the biggest viral videos featuring today’s biggest YouTube stars, mainstream and current affairs personalities.

Top 10 Videos watched in South Africa in 2018, excluding major music labels

  1. Ofentse Mwase Films – Nayi Le Walk Dance

  2. Trevor Noah – Bidding Farewell To Jacob Zuma! – TREVOR NOAH (compilation from over the years)

  3. Marc Angel Comedy – WHO DIED (Episode 147)

  4. Ramscomics – Noko Mashaba – Surviving Januworry

  5. News24 – WATCH: Game reserve owner hospitalised after being mauled by a lion

  6. Economic Freedom Fighters – CIC Julius Malema Full Speech, Winnie Mandela Funeral

  7. The River – Rich in Diamonds –  The River FULL Episode 1 | 1Magic


  9. Kylie Jenner – To Our Daughter

  10. Ofentse Mwase Films – Club Controller Bhenga Dance ft. Bri Bri, Danger Flex, Superstar Dan

Top 10 Music Videos watched by South Africans

  1. Maroon 5 – Girls Like You ft. Cardi B

  2. Drake – God’s Plan

  3. Lil Dicky – Freaky Friday feat. Chris Brown (Official Music Video)

  4. Bruno Mars – Finesse (Remix) [Feat. Cardi B] [Official Video]

  5. Drake – Nice For What

  6. Ariana Grande – No Tears Left to Cry

  7. Childish Gambino – This Is America (Official Video)

  8. Dua Lipa – IDGAF (Official Music Video)

  9. Mlindo The Vocalist – AmaBlesser ft. DJ Maphorisa

  10. Rudimental – These Days feat. Jess Glynne, Macklemore & Dan Caplen [Official Video]

Top performing ads on YouTube ZA

  1. Samsung South Africa – Introducing the GalaxyA8 with a camera so good, it lets you be you. [Intro]

  2. Samsung South Africa – The Galaxy Note9 is available now! The Game has changed!

  3. Samsung South Africa – Everyday life simplified because everything is connected

  4. MTN South Africa – MTN Presents: Little Casanova

  5. Hyundai South Africa – Hyundai Tucson TVC 2017 – Life is Beautiful

  6. Absa South Africa – Absa Fixed Deposit Account

  7. W4Dinner – Knorr’s Naturally Tasty – Full of Natural Ingredients

  8. Absa South Africa – Absa Africanacity

  9. is – 80 000 cars for sale…and counting

  10. Absa South Africa – Embracing Africanacity

Since 2012, YouTube Rewind has been viewed over 790m times (204m views from 2017, 222m views from 2016, 128m views from 2015, 141m views from 2014, 126m views from 2013 and 185m views from 2012). YouTube Rewind 2017 features 290 YouTube Creators, representing nearly 20 countries as well as viral stars, top musicians, and celebrities. YouTube Rewind 2017 included 20 days of principle production around the world, from London to Tokyo to New York to Los Angeles to Rio.

Check out the Rewind video here:

Sources: Youtube
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Brent Lindeque is the founder and editor in charge at Good Things Guy.

Recognised as one of the Mail and Guardian’s Top 200 Young South African’s as well as a Primedia LeadSA Hero, Brent is a change maker, thought leader, radio host, foodie, vlogger, writer and all round good guy.

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