Part of a Community
Very few people can say they have had their work seen over 2 million times, but Troy Lawson, an senior ODU marketing major and avid YouTuber , can. Lawson’s 58 videos have been seen over 2 million times, and he currently has 15,000 subscribers. . His most popular video, “What Guys Do Right Before Girls Come Over” and has almost 1.2 million views alone. His channel, IhateVAComedy1, is home to hilarious videos that mostly deal with relationship, skits and advice. Although some material is more serious than others, all the material contain a comedic tone and should not be taken too serious.
Despite his current popularity, Lawson was unaware of YouTube’s large audience and community before he started making videos a year ago.
“I got started really just ranting on twitter [about] different topics, [and] somebody suggested that I should start making videos, so I recorded a few videos and uploaded them on YouTube. I got [a lot] of good feedback about the videos and started to make more. I had no idea that YouTube was such a big deal and that so many people watched [it],” said Lawson.
Luckily, Lawson quickly learned and began to understand the power of YouTube.
YouTube is an internet community that contains billions of videos making it easy for users to get lost. In order to avoid this, video uploaders need to standout.
Lawson encouraged potential YouTubers to be unique. “Be yourself, “ he said. “Don’t try to be like anyone else you may enjoy on YouTube. The biggest thing you should take from successful YouTubers is their work ethic. No one on YouTube became successful by being lazy or complacent.”
Lawson also advised potentials to remain consistent. “Staying consistent is the key ingredient to being successful. You don’t have to be the most entertaining person in the world, but if you stay consistent your audience will eventually find you and by the time they find you will have [a lot] of material for them to enjoy,” said Lawson. “Despite Lawson’s high viewership, he recognizes that gaining views, subscribers and overall popularity is a process. “ Don’t get discouraged by low views or subscribers. YouTube works a lot differently than any other sites. There is so much content on YouTube it takes people a lot of time to sometimes find you. There are billions of videos on there you have to be patient,” said Lawson.
Part of YouTube, and the internet as a whole, is an emphasis on finding small communities and growing them into large communities with interested and interactive viewers. Unfortunately, Virginia is not yet a YouTube haven. Lawson hopes that YouTube users throughout the community can unify and build a network that will allow each individual’s talents to be seen by a larger viewer base. “I think that would be a great idea. Virginia has been kind of slow [at] recognizing the potential that YouTube has. I’m all for content creators coming together and creating great work.”
If any of Troy’s videos sound interesting, or you would like to contact him for comments, his YouTube channel can be found at: http://www.youtube.com/user/ihatevacomedy1/featured. Be cautioned, many of the videos contain adult situations and adult language which may not be appropriate for younger viewers.
By Sean Burke