Fleur De Force is one of the most successful beauty and fashion vloggers [video bloggers] in the UK, and part of the Stylehaul vlogger network. Her three YouTube channels have more than 1.9m subscribers and across all of her sites she has more than 170m page views.
Taylor Swift inspired me to start my YouTube channel. I’ve always been a weird fan of hers, and in 2008 I saw an interview asking her what she liked to do in her spare time. She said: “Watching makeup tutorials”. I discovered YouTube after that and was instantly hooked. About six months later, after spending half my life watching beauty videos, I decided to start making them myself.
Becoming a full-time YouTuber was a gradual process. I started at the beginning of my final year at university and by the time I left uni I was earning a little bit of money from it. I left uni and thought: “Maybe this could generate enough income to live off – let’s try it out.” So I decided to move home and try doing YouTube full-time for six months instead of getting a normal job. Luckily it worked out.
Being a vlogger takes over your life. It is all-consuming, you have to throw yourself into it. That’s part of being successful – you need to connect with your audience.
Being a YouTuber isn’t like being famous. When you’re recognised by people who watch your videos it’s great. But you’re not a celebrity – it’s more like being able to meet people in person that you’ve connected with online, like seeing an old friend. It is odd – because you’ve never met them before – but it’s exciting because I get to meet people who are engaged with my videos.
No two days are ever the same. I don’t work conventional hours at all. It takes up more time than a 9 to 5 job, but a lot of it is really fun and doesn’t feel like work. It is intense in the sense that you’re plugged in all the time – always either on social media, thinking about content or creating content.
Being at the forefront of a new industry has had its challenges. When I started, being a YouTuber wasn’t a job. Seeing it turn into its own industry has been incredible. But it’s also been a huge learning process. You kind of make it up as you go along. That’s definitely been difficult, but also really exciting.
If you want to be a YouTuber, be yourself. The main appeal for people watching others online is that they feel like you have a personal connection with them. It’s not the same as a TV presenter – it’s real and raw. I also think being consistent with uploading is so important. People know when your videos go up, so they’re more likely to come back.
The other thing to remember is that becoming a full-time vlogger doesn’t happen overnight. Just because you have one viral video that doesn’t mean you have a loyal viewer base. It’s hard work. It takes a long time. Sometimes it takes years.
When you’re vlogging, keep the numbers in perspective. It’s difficult nowadays because there are many people with mammoth followings online. I think it’s easy to think 500 or 10,000 followers isn’t enough. As in any area of life it’s so easy to compare yourself with other people, but you need to keep things in perspective. For example, when I first started YouTube I remember someone having 12,000 subscribers and I thought that was ridiculous. Now people say, “I’ve only got 12,000 subscribers” as if that’s a small number. Sit back and actually think about it – that is a lot of people. Obviously the numbers have got bigger – more people are using the platform – but you still have to think about the power of reaching those people. It’s pretty amazing.
Vlogging as a career has been incredible. It’s led me to do some amazing things – like writing my first book and launching a makeup line, which is an absolute dream come true. But my biggest career highlight is that I got to interview Taylor Swift a few years ago. She asked about how she was the reason I discovered YouTube. Amazingly, she said she now watches my videos. That was the best moment. That was pretty special for me.
[By Charlotte Seager] [Read More] [From Theguardian] [Image From Minmaxbeauty.com]