YouTube professionals Steph Belsky, Madison Brunoehler and Jennie Lake sat on a Q&A panel in The Great Hall Wednesday to give career tips and tricks about YouTube and the media.
With nearly every seat taken in the audience, the panelists answered questions for about two hours covering topics such as self-marketing and the future of the media.
Steph Belsky is the founder of Lucid, a non-profit marketing company. As a professional marketer, she provided advice on how to best create a successful channel.
“You have to know your brand and know your audience,” Belsky said.
She said that consistency is the key to keeping an audience. In addition, Belsky also urges novice YouTubers to regularly interact with their subscribers.
“Everyone wants to be acknowledged, so make your audience feel special,” Belsky said.
She said that by responding to comments, an audience will feel more engaged with someone’s YouTube channel, which is an important part of gaining followers.
Madison Brunoehler, a YouTuber and voice actress, said that the social media platform can act as both a career and a medium to help accomplish other goals.
She creates YouTube videos about film and television shows, reviews, impressions and DIYs.
Brunoehler, who has created YouTube content for more than four years, attributes a lot of her media jobs, such as voice-over work for a new “Star Wars” spinoff, to her online presence.
“Your first stuff is going to suck, but you’ll learn as you go along and find your voice,” Brunoehler said.
If a user’s channel gains enough buzz, YouTube pays its content contributors, making careers possible.
However, Brunoehler said that YouTubers should not rely on a paycheck from the website, but should instead search for outside sponsors and opportunities to grow their brand.
Jennie Lake, from Thousand Faces Media, produces content for various outlets including YouTube. She stressed the importance of YouTubers pinpointing their audience before releasing content.
“Who your audience is dictates where your content goes,” Lake said, explaining that depending on someone’s audience, content producers should consider different platforms. These could include YouTube, Instagram and other sharing outlets.
She said that because the expansion of YouTube demands more quality content, those looking to become successful on the platform should “view digital producing the same as producing any other project.”
She thinks it is important for new YouTubers to know what their end goal is before producing new content.
“To be successful on YouTube,” Lake said. “You’re not just creating content, you’re marketing it.”