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Are YouTube networks scams?

Are YouTube networks scams? with HeidiCupcake: Beauty and the Vlog Podcast 28

Click the podcast player above for the full 45 minute interview!

Check out the YouTube highlights version of the interview HERE! 

Heidi AKA HeidiCupcake is a 29 year old mother and YouTuber who started her beauty channel in 2012. She is located in Ohio and shares her love of makeup and stellar makeup skills on her channel. Heidi has 111k subscribers and 3 million video views.

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Heidi Show Notes!

Beauty Bonus Round

What are your three Holy Grail beauty items?

1.)  Hourglass Mineral Veil Primer. It is amazing.

2.)  Anastasia Brow Whiz Pencil.

3.)  Becca Shimmering Skin Perfecter in Opal: An amazing highlighter. It’s amazing, you need it. Go get it.

4.)  Too Faced Chocolate Bar Palette. I am obsessed with it. I love neutrals. You can create a simple look or something more dramatic, plus it smells like chocolate

What are your three holy grail items when it comes to your channel?

1.)  My camera. I use a Canon T3I. I would love to upgrade at some point, whenever I make some money and my views go up {laughs}. I change out different lenses, but typically I stick to the stock one that comes with it

2.)  Lighting; It’s more important than a good camera. I recently got a couple soft boxes. They produce the best light ever. It looks really natural and clear and it’s amazing.

3.)  Editing Software: Final cut pro X

Do you have any beauty vloggers you look up to?

Shaaanxo. For so many reasons. When I first hopped onto this beauty scene, she was at 50-60k and now she has over a million. You have to credit her work ethic; she has an amazing work ethic. She has built this empire for herself, which is so inspiring. That girl uploads regularly, she’s very strict about the time she uploads. Even though she gets sent a lot of stuff, you can trust what she says. She is honest about what she is saying. I respect her as a businesswoman. I am really inspired by Claire Marshall. I think her editing is amazing. I am really inspired by her. LeAnn Says, I love her too. She hasn’t changed at all. Not that it’s hard to change. It’s like she hopped on from the beginning and that’s who she was and that’s who she has been. She has a lot of confidence. Her channel has grown tremendously.

What would you not do again if you were to start your channel right now?

I have taken several months off. I would take a month or two here because I needed to regroup emotionally. Or, personal life issues. I needed that time, so I wouldn’t say I wouldn’t do that. I let the negativity bring me down. What has held me back the most is allowing the negativity and people who don’t even know me bring me down. But, it’s really dumb. If I could do it over I wouldn’t let that kind of thing affect me. That has hindered me the most. Just letting fear hold me back . Wanting to be myself and allowing myself be what I want to be and not doing that because I am afraid of how people would react. Maybe my channel would grow a lot more if I was consistent and didn’t let that bring me down.

What are you glad that you did do when you first started?

I am glad that I did it. I am glad I did it again. Like I said, the first time was nothing. I am glad that because my boyfriend encouraged me and knew it was something I enjoyed I am glad I did it. I am glad that even when there were times of question, I kept going. I recuperated and went on. If things are not going how you want it to, then take a step back and reassess or see how you can improve. Try something different and see how it goes. Be patient and trust the timing of whatever is going on.

Do you get sponsored brands or opportunities?

I have had a couple sponsored videos. There were some opportunities where I could have done it but I got the product and I didn’t like it and didn’t want to endorse that at all. That is a taboo thing on YouTube. I feel like if you are going to do those, you have to be careful about it. Stay true to yourself and if it is something that you are going to use anyway, than accept it. That is money in your pocket and it’s the time that you put into it. I have nothing against people who do sponsored videos. Sometimes it’s obvious. There are YouTubers out there that is all they are doing. I didn’t realize this was HSN. I did a couple and I felt a little guilty when I did it, even though I loved it. I did one with FabfitFun. I love them. I love the box, I love everything about FabFitFun, it’s everything I love in life. I still felt guilty. I am signed with a network. I take a cut on that. It is even more difficult. The less views I’m getting, I am not bringing anything in. I have a child to feed too. I need to put that money either back into my channel or for me and my child.

How has working with a network been, have they brought you anything?

No, it has been really frustrating with that situation a well. I contacted them. There was one month where I should have brought in a lot more. When you have a channel you can see what you could have been making on Youtube if you were not with the network. I look at what I made and I’m like, where did all this money go? What am I paying you for? You literally did nothing for me. I contacted them and told them I wanted to break my contract. I literally have gotten nothing. The network isn’t taking as large of a percentage after the last conversation. They are literally doing me nothing. I don’t communicate with anyone; nobody is doing anything. It’s not like they are, let’s do this to increase your channel or let’s do this. When I signed with them it was the beginning of my channel. It was 5 or 6 months into it. There were these big YouTubers that were signed with them. Obviously doing this is going to make me successful and bring me all the gold and it didn’t happen. You were supposed to get a banner, now anyone can get a banner. They were supposed to advertise you on their channel, I don’t know, nothing happened. It is so frustrating. It’s a four-year contract. I thought it was a good idea at the time. I am only two years into the contract. I put all the time into these videos. That is another thing that happened. When you think about the hours you put into it. With a 7-minute video it takes a lot more. At least an hour per minute, if not a lot more. It is a job. There are people who enjoy their jobs, but it would be nice to  be paid for it. If it is taking time away from other things you are doing then you want to get compensated for it. I don’t think they even know who I am. I don’t think they even know I am on their radar. They are collecting a check from me and that’s it. I have no communication with them. They focus on the people who are already doing well. Four-year contract is insane. If anyone is thinking about it, do your research and speak with more than one network. When I signed it was two years ago and a lot has changed in that time. There are so many other networks. Several other networks have contacted me and I can’t do anything. I can’t break my contract or anything. If you are not signed with anyone, do your research and do as much as you can. Try and do your research. Look it up. People will write reviews based on their experiences. I am sure networks are very beneficial for some people and not for others. You can contact them yourself and ask them, hey I am interested but can I get some more information. I wish I had done that.

I love YouTube more than I don’t, that’s why I am doing it. But it is not without a struggle.

If you are a YouTuber, sign up for Grapevine (It’s FREE!)! You get connected with potential sponsors and other YouTubers looking to collaborate! (Plus you will be getting a special bonus exclusively for my listeners and you are supporting the show!) Click here.

You can find Heidi and her channel at http://www.youtube.com/heidicupcake

Author: Erika Vieira

Marketing and sales expert Erika Vieira is the host and producer of the #1 influencer strategy podcast, Beauty and the Vlog. The podcast, with over 100 episodes and hundreds of thousands of downloads is dedicated to content creators who are looking to start, improve and grow their unique influence online. Erika works with influencers on personal branding, content improvement and defining a niche via customized strategy sessions, channel critiques and business support. She also loves makeup, beauty and her family and believes anyone who has the drive and passion can find success online. Feel free to send her a message here.