A little empathy goes a long way in YouTube content

I have a confession to make. I once thought about dropping out of college because the YouTube content I was watching during class was actually teaching me more. There were no college majors that I considered pursuing, and my indecision drove me crazy. Many nights I found myself in a deep sea of tumultuous emotions feeling confused, lonely, and fearful of who I was becoming and how my future would pan out. 

I feared that I would go through with my decision to drop out of college without a real plan. The feeling of being stuck was only exacerbated when I would watch countless videos on YouTube about young 20-somethings who found tremendous wealth and success after dropping out of college.

However, each of these stories also inspired me because I saw their sense of conviction, direction, and independence. I felt that was severely lacking in my life at the time. How could I be like them?

5 reasons YouTube content creators make great content marketers

Content marketing must educate your target audience on solutions to problems relevant to them so they see your brand as an authority that provides value to them. It builds trust and leads to loyal customers. The essence of this strategy is usually called inbound marketing.

This value-first approach in the YouTube content I was consuming is what impacted me and made me want to be like those I was watching. Great content marketers and successful YouTube content creators need to have immense empathy for their audience.

What better way to show compassion than consistently sharing bits and pieces of your own life story that is relatable and encourages others to make better decisions?

With that said, here are five reasons why YouTubers make great content marketers.  

1. Successful YouTube content creators and marketers resonate with their audiences.

One of the biggest struggles that content marketers experience is research. Reaching out to people of different industries and customers segments with a message that they can genuinely resonate with is difficult. You need to become best friends with millions of strangers in a short period.

The amount of data that needs to be gathered and analyzed can be overwhelming and time-consuming. This leaves small marketing teams vulnerable to making mistakes and crafting the wrong message.

Despite typically being a one-person team, YouTuber content creators seem to rarely depend on extensive marketing research to produce great content. They don’t stalk social media feeds, gather census stats, or endlessly read industry magazines to find the next big content idea.

Instead, they share their journey in a way that is relatable. The YouTube content creators I was so drawn to celebrated their successes and failures in each of their videos, and shared lessons with me. In this way, I felt I was getting an education in how to get to where they were. This is the secret behind how successful YouTube content creators produce viral videos so consistently.

They rarely have a problem putting themselves in their audience shoes because they are always wearing them. 

2. They live the lives of their audience.

What separates successful YouTube content is that they consistently progress towards their own goals and share relevant details or lessons along the way. People see them as sources of inspiration. No advertisements or multi-million-dollar budget PR stunts needed to grab peoples’ attention. All they needed was a way to get their audience’s attention. And they did this by sharing the ups and downs of their daily life while working towards success. Who can’t relate to that?

Iman Ghadzhi is one example of a college (technically high school) dropout who went on to become successful by building a successful social media marketing agency. Despite his success, he continues to make relatable and helpful videos for his audience. His YouTube content focuses on educating early entrepreneurs.

Iman’s YouTube content explains how to approach businesses to set up meetings, get your first sale, manage your clients, develop morning routines for productivity, and more. These videos are all things he’s learned in his own experience and he’s sharing it with us.

Others wonder how to make a career out of YouTube. Successful creators don’t just wonder; they’re actually doing it.

Most business owners think about trending content ideas that make them look like authority as a content strategy.

YouTubers focus on creating an environment that helps everyone succeed. 

3. They feel what the audience feels.

For many business owners, writers’ block is common because they’re too busy to craft the perfect blog post or build an extensive guide. Every blog post, video, and infographic quickly turns into an overwhelming project that ends up never being completed. For what content is produced it’s dry, overly technical, and not as entertaining. 

People learn better while being entertained. YouTube content that goes viral is always entertaining. Yet businesses continue to wonder why people refuse to pay attention to their overly corporate presentations. It lacks empathy and the audience doesn’t feel like they have anything in common with the person on the other side of the content they’re consuming. 

On the other hand, Youtube content seems to be created effortlessly because it comes from their feelings. They do more than lecture their audience on things to do. Successful YouTubers sometimes vent, express their views on life, and their frustrations.

Their content is relatable, easy to understand, and full of variety, making viewers feel smart and in the know. Individuals realize that they are not alone and, most importantly, helps others find their unique truth. 

4. They go where the audience goes.

YouTuber content creators’ ability to tell stories and truly connect with others leads to being introduced to opportunities to express themselves even more. From video requests from viewers to the use of analytics to create new experiences for their audiences.

Even when they seem to have captivated their audiences with their own stories, they know that everything isn’t about them. It’s about where their audience is on their own journey and how their YouTube content helps them.

After all, you would never talk about your day job at your best friend’s wedding?  No, you would speak about all the fun times you both had as a bachelor’s and supporting your friend’s marriage. The same applies to content marketing.  

With that in mind, it is important to realize that content distribution is not just about where you publish your content. Content distribution is all about context. Successful YouTube content creators connect with their audiences not just on YouTube, but on other social channels. They do live videos to answer questions, post pictures on their Instagram, and write blog posts to go into more detail than what was covered in a video.

Successful YouTube content creators know how to leverage different social channels to distribute their content effectively.

5. They respond to how the audience responds.

Successful YouTuber content creates a safe space for viewers to express their thoughts and feelings. This develops a community of people on a similar path. Effectively managing a community requires that the audience feels their wants and concerns are addressed.

Measuring the impact that your content has on viewers through analytics is important to understanding how your audience feels. You can’t improve what you can’t measure. Many businesses tend to look at their analytics to learn more about their audience and refine their content strategy.

YouTuber content creators go further by measuring the impact that their values are having on their viewers and consider those metrics instead of just views, likes, and comments. They understand that the more they grow, the more they can help others do the same. The audience they serve becomes another source of fuel towards their own personal growth.

“Great marketers have immense empathy for their audience. They can put themselves in their shoes, live their lives, feel what they feel, go where they go, and respond to how they respond. That empathy comes out in content that resonates with your audience.” – Rand Fishkin.

YouTubing is more than an app; it is a mindset.

YouTubers are not successful because of their platform alone. They are successful because of their mindset. I realized every one of the YouTuber content creators that inspired me was unique and showed me there is no one-size-fits-all answer to creating a meaningful life.

It is up to you to define your definition of success and help others discover their own personal truths from the wisdom you share in your content.

As a result, my definition of success has grown into something completely different from the narrow vision I thought I had to live up to during my early college days.

Success is not about picking the right major or field to study and finding my dream job. My current definition of success is developing the skills needed to explore brands from different industries. It is to represent and communicate their ideas to the world and hopefully inspire consumers to make lifestyle changes for the better. 

Acadium has been an excellent resource in helping me to reach my definition of success. With their extensive selection of courses on digital marketing and access to a marketplace of businesses looking for apprenticeships, there are plenty of opportunities for marketing enthusiasts to take advantage of to get a head start to a fantastic career.

My last piece of advice? Be more compassionate towards yourself and others, and appreciate where you are on your journey, and be courageous in sharing your empathy with others through your stories will go a long way.  

Jalen HeadshotJalen Evans is a part-time millennial and full-time marketing enthusiast who dedicates much of his spare time studying influential copywriters and finding new ways to create authentic content that drives brand awareness leads and sales revenue.

 He has dedicated much interest in discovering and sharing the best health and wellness practices worldwide to inspire business professionals to find their definition of self-care and work-life balance. 

Jalen eventually hopes to find his place in the industry by getting his work published in influential magazines that reach millions of consumers.

He currently lives in Kalamazoo, Michigan, and is presently buying groceries to try out the Mediterranean diet that he keeps telling people about because he is a part-time millennial and worries about his friends and family’s well-being.