YouTubers Audience Increases
By Kylie Turner
A local YouTuber has more than doubled his subscribers within the past 5 months.
Jesse Garant has been a YouTube gamer for more than a year and his channel Thrash94Gaming, is continuing to grow. In the beginning of November 2016 his channel had 1,400 subscribers and 160,000 views. His YouTube channel now has 6,300 subscribers and 834,349 views. Garant works fulltime at Tim Hortons but considers his job title as YouTuber.
“I say I am a YouTuber first, always,” said Garant. “I am actually making money from it. YouTube has turned into a job instead of being just for fun.”
Garant said he chose YouTube as a platform because it is one of the best for sharing videos and likes that he can edit his own videos on it. He said he started a YouTube channel because he would go to work and would get bored when his girlfriend was not around.
“I got really bored, honestly I had nothing to do,” said Garant. “I saw all these other people recording videos and I thought ‘why not me’?”
Vincent Manzerolle, a communications professor at the University of Windsor who specializes in media studies, said it is an interesting field.
“It offers a lot of different ways to understand our contemporary culture, politics, and economy,” said Manzerolle. “Media technology is weaved directly into each of these. Media studies provides several fruitful ways of thinking and doing research in an era where network digital media is all around us, at all times.”
Manzerolle said the smart phone and social media are ubiquitous, that digital media will become more embedded in our everyday environment. He believes there will be a greater integration of artificial intelligence and machine learning into our devices and platforms.
Garant said he has a new editing software and a professional microphone which help make cleaner videos. He does not know exactly what has changed that has helped his channel grow but he said the timing strategies he uses to post videos and using more tags on his posts help.
“If I don’t grow and one day it stops completely I know I did something wrong,” said Garant. “If it stops I know I have a problem especially since I have others in the NHL gaming community tell me I am one of the fastest growing NHL YouTubers. You have to be adaptable that’s how you grow.”
Manzerolle said if your goal is to leverage a specific social network you should spend more time cultivating a particular audience. In some cases this means more carefully curating your content to match a particular “personal brand identity,” while in other cases it could mean creating audience engagement.
“In order to become iconic, particularly in a highly competitive attention economy, you must carve out a niche on a particular platform and in doing so create a niche in the mind of your audience,” said Manzerolle. “The single and most important thing they can do is first understand who their audience is currently, and who they want to be in their audience in the future.”
Garant continues to upload at least one video a day and is receiving attention from other gamers for his progressive growth. He said he is not worried about going to school right now but will think about it for the future. He said YouTube as a full-time job would be his ultimate goal.
For anyone aspiring to be a media icon, Manzerolle says to stay authentic.
“It’s a tightrope walk because you can’t really ‘engineer’ authenticity, but you can stay true to your own goals, personal aspirations, and audience.”