For this episode of Beauty and the Vlog, I interview Bri Hall about her YouTube success. Bri has amassed tremendous YouTube success and in this podcast she reveals exactly how she has done that!
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Bri AKA Smartista Beauty is a beautiful 21 year old based out of Washington DC. She started her channel May of 2013. She focuses much of her channel on hair tutorials but she does beauty, fashion and lifestyle videos as well. Her channel slogan is Fearlessly Beautiful. She currently has 226k subscribers and 8 million video views.
Check out the YouTube highlights version of the interview HERE!
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YouTube Success with Bri Hall Show Notes
What inspired you to start a YouTube channel?
My story isn’t the typical YouTube success story. I am an art major in college. Before then, I had this request contest on Facebook where people would request things and I would draw things and make videos. It got so large on Facebook that I couldn’t keep up with the requests, that I decide to put them on YouTube. One day, I decided to add my face to a video and people went crazy asking me about my hair and beauty questions. I decided to start a new channel, Smartista Beauty. From that point on, my first video hit 50k views and people started requesting more and more beauty and hair things, I got really involved in that channel and here we are today.
How do you think your channel grew so quickly in a short amount of time, thats crazy YouTube success!
I wish I had a better answer but I honestly think the turning event was BeautyCon. I went to beautycon this year. I definitely stood out because a lot of people knew me for having my head shave. At BeautyCon I had this long luxurious ponytail and a design shaved. People were like, who is this girl? A lot of people followed me there and it was word of mouth from that point on. I noticed a significant increase in my channel and traction in that event. At 15k , I did a giveaway and that was two weeks after BeautyCon. My channel after that event legitimately skyrocketed forward.
The conversation that changed her life
One of the most inspirational conversations I had was with Kandee Johnson. Let me tell you, when I first went to BeautyCon I didn’t know what was going on. I went through general admission; I didn’t know there was a talent entrance or anything. From the minute I was in general admission, there were people that were standing in line and pointing. When I got to the point of the carpet, there were a group of girls coming up and taking pictures. I didn’t think they were taking pictures of me. A rep with a headset said, do you have a channel? I told her my channel, she looked it up on her phone and she said come to the talent lounge. From that point I got an all access pass where I was able to go to the VIP with all of the big successful YouTubers. I think it was because I looked the part. When I went in there, I came across Kandee. I don’t know how we started talking. I think we were with a group of people and we started sectioning off and talking by ourselves. We were just talking about humble beginnings and how YouTube success changed her life and I was really inspired by her.
Beauty Bonus Round
Three Holy Grail Beauty Products:
Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Opal: http://amzn.to/1FAePkO
Cover Girl Lash Blast Mascara: http://amzn.to/1OA2dwN
Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Lolita: http://amzn.to/1MwOe82
Holy Grail Items for Channel:
1.) Final Cut Pro: I love it, I am experienced in every editing software including aftereffects. But, Final Cut is my hoil grail.
2.) Ring Light : Brings out color and gives me that glow.
3.) Artistic Ability
Tips on Lighting
I read a lot of books on lighting. There is three point lighting, look into that. That is what gives you that whole three dimensional feel in your videos. The fluorescent light I use came with my umbrella lighting kit. It comes with three lights. Two are umbrellas and one is a fluorescent light that I put behind me. Umbrella light is a diffused light. Since the back-light needs to be stronger, you want it to be the florescent light.
What would you not do again if you were to start your channel right now?
I would not be so hard on myself. It’s easy to slip into a mode of comparison with youtube success and entertainment. There are times where you get caught up in the number aspect of it. Right now, I’m so relaxed on that. Doing things for fun, the numbers come more naturally Not comparing myself to anyone is key.
What are you glad you did do when you first started?
I’m glad that I had a good quality camera when I first started out. I spend hours studying channels. I am actually studying lighting and different aspects. I would go to some of the biggest channels on YouTube and filter them so the oldest ones come up first and it was an epiphany to see how much these channels grow. Having a decent quality channel helped. The lens is important. There are many times when people want this intense expensive camera body. What helped me was getting good quality lenses. I started with a Canon Rebel T2i. I got that for my art channel when I was filming those videos. I was getting interested in photography. I was working a waitressing job and saved up. When I started the beauty channel I already had the camera.
YouTube: Smartista Beauty