Do you know how many videos people watch on YouTube – in total – each day?
Guess again…more than 5 BILLION(!!) YouTube videos are consumed worldwide every single day.
It’s hard to imagine a time when we didn’t turn to YouTube for entertainment and information. But back when the video sharing platform first launched, nobody quite realized its true potential.
Tim Schmoyer, however, was determined to work that out.
In this episode of our It Started with Content case study series, I share Tim’s story. Spoiler alert: Tim pioneered YouTube video as we know it today and remains a leader in educational YouTube content.
It’s likely you’ll have heard many YouTube success stories. After all, the platform puts you in front of 30 million people daily. But no story is quite like Tim’s.
Hit play to listen to the podcast episode…
…watch the video…
…or keep reading to find out how Tim Schmoyer became a YouTube leader.
Who is Tim Schmoyer?
Before we dive into Tim’s incredible story, let me tell you a little bit about who he is.
Tim is the Founder of Video Creators, a company specializing in video strategy specifically for YouTube. The organization has worked with some huge brands including Disney, HBO, Budweiser, eBay, and has been featured by Forbes, the BBC, and even YouTube themselves.
To say Tim is good at what he does is putting it lightly. He knows exactly what makes a great YouTube video and transformed that knowledge into a seven-figure business. But how did he find out such valuable information?
Through experimenting with video content, of course!
So let’s go back to where it all began…
Love in the time of YouTube
Believe it or not, Tim’s content story starts with romance.
In 2005, Tim moved across the US, away from his family, for graduate school. To share updates about his life to his friends and family back home, Tim decided to start a personal blog.
Just to give you some context, Facebook wasn’t public yet and the first iPhone wouldn’t be released for another two years…so blogging was one of the most modern ways to connect with people long-distance at the time!
Blogging was a great way to tell people what he’d been up to, but when Tim wanted to introduce his family to his new girlfriend, blogging just didn’t seem like the best way to do it. Then he heard about this video sharing platform…
Tim recorded a video, uploaded it to “YouTube,” and emailed a link to his family and friends.
Bitten by the content bug
In an interview with TechSmith, Tim said that after that initial video, he was hooked. He kept creating videos for his friends and family, and sharing them via YouTube.
Tim created videos of him and his girlfriend going out to eat, going to the park, just documenting their day-to-day lives. The term “vlogging” hadn’t been invented yet, but, essentially, that’s what Tim was doing!
His accidental, amateur vlogs were a hit with his friends and family, but they weren’t the only ones watching.
Strangers, people he hadn’t shared his video links with, also began commenting on his videos.
At first, Tim thought this was really strange. After all, why would people with no connection to him watch videos about his life? Little did he know that this type of video would go on to become one of the most popular (and monetizable) video genres there is…
Tim had an “aha” moment. If he could understand why people were watching his videos, then he’d have valuable insights into the platform’s potential.
Doing a YouTube deep dive
At this point, YouTube was only just a year old. So Tim really got in on the ground floor. But he also did the legwork others weren’t willing to do.
He told Eric Siu in his Leveling Up podcast that he took a thorough, active approach to finding out what was working and what wasn’t – even at this early stage. Tim paid attention to other creators, created and shared his own videos, and experimented with content for seven years.
That’s right, Tim dedicated seven years to creating and analysing YouTube content.
Tim’s channel was generating one million views…a month.
It’s safe to say he definitely found out what video content works on YouTube!
From amateur vlogger to master of YouTube
Usually, this is where the content story ends. YouTubers get a large enough following that they can monetize their channel and use it as a primary revenue stream. Their personal brand and YouTube content is their business, and it doesn’t go much beyond that.
But Tim was still riding that wave from the early days of YouTube, and knew there was potential to do more.
In 2013, with all those YouTube insights and years of hands-on experience under his belt, Tim started his video strategist company and YouTube channel of the same name, Video Creators. It was the first ever YouTube education channel.
With Tim at the helm, the organization fast became the go-to authority for YouTube and video strategy. The YouTube channel was the primary marketing function, showing businesses and brands that they practiced what they preached, knew what they were talking about, and that positioned him as a thought leader.
For years, Tim had been creating helpful, informative content. Now, with his business behind him, he was an even more credible thought leader in the video creation and YouTube strategy space.
As brands and businesses started to see YouTube’s potential for reaching and connecting with audiences, they wanted help. Many of them hadn’t been paying close attention to YouTube, knew little about creating video content, and just knew they needed an effective strategy, fast.
Who better to turn to than Tim?
Tim continued to create videos for the Video Creators channel (and still does!), experimenting and keeping him at the forefront of the developing platform. He shares YouTube tips, how-to videos, thoughts on video strategies, and more.
This content is what helped catch the eye of so many big brands, and what helped Video Creators become the hugely successful business it is today.
Like many of the It Started with Content stories, Tim’s journey isn’t a short one. It spans years of diligence, hard work, and a commitment to content that many people just don’t make. All reasons why Tim is a respected leader in his niche to this day.
Tim’s story is a brilliant example of someone who stumbled upon creating content, approached it with an entrepreneurial mindset, and carved a path to greatness. It truly is a business success story that started with (and continues to use) content.
Oh, and one last note to Tim’s story – the girlfriend he created that first YouTube video with? Tim married her!
Inspired to get started with YouTube?
If Tim’s story has got you considering what YouTube (or video content in general) could do for your business, I’m not surprised! Just to convince you further…here are some more mind-blowing YouTube stats for you…
Today more than 30 million people will visit the world’s largest content platform and the number of hours people spend watching videos grows year-on-year.
In fact, for the last two years, average hourly watch time has increased a whopping 60%.
So, it’s a no-brainer. There’s no better time to get started with video content than right now.
Check out more It Started with Content stories here.
If you want tips and advice about creating, repurposing, and distributing your content, then do check out my book, Content 10x: More Content, Less Time, Maximum Results. It’s the ultimate guide to content repurposing, with everything you need to know about amplifying your brand’s reach on all the major content sharing platforms.