What’s Better Than Being a YouTube Star?

Being a YouTube “star” (if I may say) is somewhat overrated. Indeed it’s truly awesome to have an audience, interact with a community, and generate income from something you enjoy… There’s something else more rewarding and enduring… helping or watching friends or fellow Tubers achieve greater success.

Check out this piece about Shaycarl from Forbes’ Michael Humphrey. It’s part of an interesting series call “Boom Tubers.” Humphrey doles out the questions, and the Tuber (or its ghost writer) responds. Certainly Shaycarl would be “epic” without you and me. But for those of us watching him before his epicness was known, it’s cool to see it acknowledged in “mainstream” media, don’t you think? His photo on an album cover… loads of media. It couldn’t happen to a nicer guy.

Here’s version 2 of my free eBook that Shaycarl said helped him. Reading it will not make you epic. But it can’t hurt.

Here’s an e-mail I got from ShayCarl (who read, or alleged to read, the piece back in January of 2008). I reserve the right to surface this e-mail bi-annually.

NALTS!! You are a true genius! Im not just saying that. I just read all 34 pages of your book and LOVED it..I think that it’s good that you did this for free but could definitely foresee you charging for this or something similar in the future. I’m very new to YOUTUBE. I made a video called “HE MAN GERM” in response to SXE Phils contest “how to get a popular show series or vlog” at the last second and by some unicorn miracle was selected as one of the top 5. Now that video has been viewed ALMOST 10,000 times. I’m waiting for it to hit the 10k so I can celebrate!! But now I’m addicted to this DAMN thing called YOUTUBE “I could totally quit I just don’t want to” and my life has turned upside down. I have been looking for something exactly like your book this whole time. Anyways I remember what you said short and sweet.. Thanks for being a YOUTUBE mentor…Official SHAY book rating—-3 thumbs up! and since I only have 2 thumbs thats pretty dern impressive!!!!

And now the “mentor” has gone to mentee, sir.

I rejoice in telling Shaycarl’s rare but encouraging story, and almost never mention any role I might have served. I usually center around the video where he discovers the new home he purchased (via his YouTube earnings) turned out to be one in which he had installed a granite counter top when he was a humble blue collar worker (and probably enjoying it just as much).

13 Replies to “What’s Better Than Being a YouTube Star?”

  1. This is a great article Kevin! You have been a HUGE part of the way I do YouTube. I have became friends with many YouTubers and like you said to do, we have been working our way up the ladder. I have recently became a YouTube partner and continue trying to expand my audience on a daily basis. I have been daily vlogging for 697 days now and see no signs of stopping anywhere in my near future. I had the pleasure of meeting you last year at VidCon and hope to see you there again this year. I would love to have you sign my copy of “Beyond Viral”. You are one of the OG’s of YouTube and still make me laugh with your short random videos to this day. I wish you continued success and all the best! Stay Awwwwweeeessssooommee!

    Team Awesome

  2. This is awesome. I feel like Shay 3 years ago. I made a video for him (his face from every video of the first year of shaytard vlogs). He tweeted me, mentioned me in his video, facebook, etc. The video has over 33K views and now I am hooked! I read your free e-book several months ago and enjoyed it and I constantly think back to it as I think about my channel.

    I worked really hard to get my first 130 subscribers by just getting out and making friends. Then Shay gave me the shout out and I am approaching 1200!

    It is interesting because I am more of a white collar type guy (software engineer) and already do okay for my family but I have this urge to pursue this as a career.

    I really do appreciate you as a mentor. In case you are interested, my YT channel is micahstubz

  3. Your a good man Nalts and I have always considered you to be one of those special YouTubers that stay connected with your audience. I’m sure its almost impossible for a person like Daneboe to keep up with all his comments and E-mails but surprisingly you seem to chime in every now and then either through a video comment or responding to a video comment. I appreciate it, and look forward to meeting you again some day.

  4. Nalts,

    Thanks for the kind words about my series. It’s become pretty clear that there’s a rich story to tell about YouTubers building these communities around their videos. It’s also pretty clear I should continue it (maybe on a monthly basis) after the six-week series is finished. Any nominations you’d like to make are welcome and congratulations on all the help you’ve provided.

    Michael Humphrey

  5. How cool to have that email from Shay! Hard to believe it was only 2008 when he was super stoked to get ALMOST 10,000 views on a video. How times change! You continue to do great stuff Nalts and obviously have since near the beginning of this whole YouTube phenomenon!


  6. Hi Kevin.

    I love how you tell this story again and again and again. LOL

    Seriously though.

    I started vlogging on YouTube back in August of 2010. My girlfriend bought me your book, “Beyond Viral” and I read your free ebook right around the time I made my very first YouTube video. I have to say that there is A LOT of good advice in it.

    Right now, my subscribers are relatively small compared to the YouTubers who have responded here (650) and my video views average about 30 per video, but I make videos as often as I can just about stuff that I want to make. I have loads of fun making my videos and I have connected with many YouTubers who are not only loyal viewers, but have become good friends as well.

    I do my best to follow the advice you have laid out in your books and I hope to someday have 1/10th of the success of a Shaycarl.

    Anyways I just wanted to personally thank you for your efforts in helping other aspiring YouTubers with your books and your “unclenalts” YouTube channel and truly appreciate your efforts.

    Best wishes to you and your family. 🙂


  7. I think it’s awesome that Shay has been able to turn this venture into an opportunity to make a living. Kudos to his success.

  8. Your blog and free eBook are regular reading for me. I am a speck of dust on YouTube, but slowly and surely I am getting better and my audience is starting to grow. I recently committed to being just the crazy nut that everybody thinks I am anyway so now I can enjoy being myself. I finally got tired of seeing my family members just look away and sigh regrettably. Now I am happily communing with others that are waving the same freak flag. Your articles are fun to read, informative and help me feel like my freakishness is acceptable in this circle. Thanks for that. BTW did I mention I love your videos? I do. Keep changing your beautiful.

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