Social Media Influencers are the celebrities of new millennia. 2 popular Youtubers in particular are also UGA students. Brooke Miccio and Danielle Carolan have seen much popularity on the internet and have expanded their passions on to a new platform: podcasts. Their podcast “Gals On The Go” is about life, college, tips and balancing it all. I was lucky enough to interview these girls about their social media presence and how it has affected both their personal and professional lives.
What sparked your interest in Youtube/Podcasts?
Brooke: I found YouTube in middle school as a fun place to post videos with friends online. I was always an extroverted person, soI found myself immediately interested and started uploading then. The podcast was an idea we had a few years ago to serve as an extension of our YouTube channels. I listen to podcasts myself, so I was interested in starting my own by curiosity!
Danielle: In 2010 I started my YouTube channel just for fun with my laptop webcam filming myself putting makeup on and discovered the “youtube community” from there.. My channel has now developed into a lifestyle and fashion vlog. I started listening to podcasts the last few years on long drives and walking to classes. Brooke and I decided we wanted to create our own podcast “Gals on the Go” where we talk about current events, productivity tips, what it’s like being an influencer in college, and more!
Does your popularity online affect your day to day? What role does it play in your personal life and professional life?
Brooke:Many of my best friends are from Youtube/social media, so an entire separate world is truly opened by Youtube. It’s something I think about on a daily basis, and of course dealing with the criticisms online is hard. I do worry that employers may not like that aspect of having a presence online, but I try to be the most authentic version of me and I hope that with me being open, I can still shine through as a professional.
Danielle: I definitely find myself aware of my appearance when I am out and about – especially on campus. I am so thankful to be often stopped on campus by viewers. However, just like anyone else I have bad days, I have tests and am stressed or didn’t get much sleep. When meeting new people I don’t usually bring up my social media presence. I do find though that sometimes when people find out they treat me differently – whether that be in a negative or positive way.
Do you use your talents from online content creation and marketing yourself on campus at UGA? How?
Brooke: I served as my sororities Vice President of Public Relations which gave me a different lens of doing social media and just general marketing for another organization. I also have the tools now to market myself across social platforms such as LinkedIn, which helped to land me my Social Media Marketing Internship at QVC last summer.
Danielle: I try my best to keep my social/school life and social media life separate. I definitely document my day to day life at school for my social media, but I really enjoy being a UGA student – going to the football games, being in a sorority, taking interesting classes, and everything of the sorts!
How do you market yourself online? Is there a persona, are you fully yourself, do you do certain things to make yourself more marketable or your content more clickable?
Brooke: I am fully myself in my videos, with the exception of just avoiding some controversial or more taboo topics. Years ago I found myself doing the “clickable” videos but over the years I realized slow and steady growth by just being authentic is more sustainable for long term success on the platform!
Danielle: I am often told by friends and family that I am just about the same in my videos as I am in person, which is the goal. I definitely speak with more of a positive upbeat tone in my videos because monotone is not enjoyable for viewers.
What has your popularity through Youtube and Podcasts taught you about business, especially digital marketing? Has it changed your plans for your future?
Brooke: I have learned that an entire WORLD exists for the collaboration of digital marketers and Youtube. There are so many careers that just involve working with influencers, and it’s cool to know I have the knowledge from college to serve on the professional end of the perspective, but also can offer insights on what Youtubers look for and like in brands. Digital Marketing is a space that companies will need to allocate a budget/strategy towards if they wish to remain relevant in years to come.
Danielle: I have always pictured myself going to college, graduating, marketing and networking myself, being an intern at multiple companies, then getting a job in marketing or advertising. However now, I am really enjoying my YouTube channel and taking my viewers along on the journey of going to UGA. I stillplan on working with companies, but in different ways. I am not opposed to a traditional career one day, that is why I am working on getting my degree!
What is your favorite/ least favorite part of online content creation?
Brooke: My favorite part of the creation process is the final end product, as well as uploading and seeing how my audience reacted to my content. I love reading comments and seeing feedback. My least favorite part, going along with the previous response, is negative criticism. I am extremely defensive and find it hard to read comments about me that are hurtful or make assumptions.
Danielle: My favorite part is filming videos and expressing myself. My least favorite part would definitely be the post production of editing and uploading the videos. It is really fun to edit videos however it is very time consuming and hard to balance with school work.