After two years of Covid cancellations, the most anticipated creator event is finally back in sunny Southern California for an in-person celebration of all things creators. Team Jellysmack has arrived on the scene at VidCon 2022 and we’re taking over the Anaheim Convention Center (and adjacent locations) for three full days of insider industry scoop, career-changing content tips, breaking creator news, and nonstop fun.
For this year’s event lineup, we’ve got exclusive on-stage panels with premier creator partners, a colorful branded booth on the Industry Track, an insightful fireside chat, and an invite-only Featured Creator Lounge at the Hyatt Regency. Basically, we’ll be front and center for all of the convention’s most-talked-about moments.
Having FOMO yet? If the answer is yes, you’ve come to the right place. We’ll be taking you along with us to the panels, the parties, and everything in between. Keep checking in now through Saturday, June 25 as we share live updates from where it’s all happening at VidCon 2022.
Saturday, June 25
Wakin’ up in the morning, ready to kick off the final day at VidCon with “Don’t Sleep on Going Multi-Platform,” Jellysmack’s final sponsored panel. Our amazing Sr. Director of Creator Partnerships Cat Valdes is hosting, and I’m beyond excited to hear what Jellysmack creator partners Niki DeMartino and Charlotte Dobre have to share about taking their content across all the platforms.
Charlotte starts the panel off by saying how weird it is to be back at VidCon this year. “I used to watch the panels, and now I’m actually on one.”
Both Niki and Charlotte then told the crowd how they began their creator careers. Niki is a YouTube veteran, starting a channel with her twin Gabi 👯♀️ over 10 years ago. Today, however, she’s focusing on creating her own content…even though it feels weird without her other half. So, how has her content evolved?
“I’ve learned that content trends go in and out, so I focus on my core purpose, which is making videos that I love. I try not to get too lost in the sauce.” 🥫
Charlotte comes from an acting background and got her start hosting a YouTube news show, Inform Overload. During the pandemic her auditions halted, so she quickly pivoted to creating her own content. In just two years she’s amassed millions of fans across all the major platforms with the help of Jellysmack.
“Did you think that level of success was possible on other platforms beyond YouTube?” Cat asks inquisitively.
“No I definitely didn’t,” answers Charlotte. “I hit a million followers on Facebook way faster I did on YouTube. It pretty much exploded out of nowhere, and that’s all thanks to Jellysmack.” 💥
For more multi-platform insights from Cat, Charlotte, and Niki, come back to Creator Post next week for the full Jellysmack x VidCon 2022 recap.
Arriving at the Discover Stage presented by TikTok to catch a panel I think all creators can benefit from: “Wellness in the Digital Age.”
TikTokers Chris Olsen, Elyse Myers, Spencer a.k.a. Spencwuah, and Jessie Paege all share what mental health means to them. “It’s all of the things that people can’t see when they look at you. It’s what’s under the surface that drives all of your decisions,” says Elyse.
Chris has a different outlook. “I feel like the words mental health always have a negative connotation. I like to shift the focus to a more positive place.” Chris has amassed millions of followers sharing real, authentic moments, some of which come from therapy sessions. “Therapy can be scary and overwhelming for many people. But there are a lot of ways we can laugh about these moments. That’s healing too.”
So, how is it handling the attention online? “It’s so unexpected,” admits Spencer. “When you show your life online, it’s so much harder to go through things. But luckily, the majority of my followers have been really supportive. I just ignore the negativity.”
Then they shift to a topic that Jellysmack knows is a major challenge: creator burnout. How can creators defeat it and what are ways they can unplug? Elyse shares her personal strategy.
“How I feel when I sit down to make a video will tell me how my energy is. If I feel like I’m dreading filming, I have nothing in the tank, or am feeling homesick for my life before being a creator, I don’t record,” she tells the audience. “I don’t ever create from a place that’s on the edge of burnout.”
Taking weekends off like normal nine-to-fivers and setting boundaries, both with other people and yourself, are more tips these top TikTokers share that have helped them get to where they are today. 🚀
I’ve been craving fast food ever since Hellthy Junk Food‘s panel yesterday 🤤, so I make my way to one of VidCon’s most-talked-about activations: the YouTube Shorts Drive-Thru. Drag queens dressed in head-to-toe metallic and high-energy, choreographed roller skaters entertain the hundreds in line, patiently waiting to snack on what YouTube is serving up.
Riders get to select a slushie and snack before hopping on the decked-out golf cart, which takes you through the drive-thru. I scan the code on the roof and am ready to post my experience directly on YouTube Shorts (genius, right?). Dancers drop it low and greeters wave excitedly as you arrive at the pick-up window. This is certainly unlike any fast food drive-thru I’ve been to before. 😅
I am handed my bag and tropical punch slushie, and am transported back to the entrance so I can eat, post, and watch others enjoy this one-of-a-kind activity. Only at VidCon…
Closing out the convention with one of Jellysmack’s own: our Director of YouTube Development, Mateo Price. He’s sitting down with YouTube creators James Riedel and Dylan Lemay, plus CEO of CreatorML, Charles Weill, to talk YouTube tips and data analytics.
As was the topic of many panels this week, they dive right into short vs. long-form content on the platform. “Right now, I would focus on making ten 60 second videos for Shorts rather than one 10 minute video,” Dylan tells the Creator Track audience.
But that doesn’t mean creators still shouldn’t post longer videos. James talks his process. “I work with my team to make sure the structure of the video keeps the viewer’s attention and is entertaining. The higher the AWT (Average Watch Time), the better.” 📈
When it comes to beating the algorithm, Charles shares a strategy for up-and-coming creators, and that’s the age-old explore/exploit tradeoff.
“25% of your videos should be exploration and the other 75% should be exploitation,” he states. In other words, when you have something that works well, do more of it. But every so often, do something totally out of the box.
Friday, June 24
Started the morning with a much-needed moment of zen. 🧘 Alyson Stoner, wellness creator extraordinaire, led the Festival Stage audience in a mental health exercise designed to help treat burnout and revitalize the mind, body, and soul.
After a couple deep breaths and some meditation, it’s time to return to the VidCon madness.
I arrived half an hour early to what is one of the most anticipated panels of the week, and I’m glad I did. The room is just about full, anxiously awaiting one of the world’s biggest creators (and Jellysmack creator partner, I might add), Jimmy Donaldson a.k.a. MrBeast. He’s joining Todd Beaupre, Director of Product Management at YouTube to talk about the algorithm behind it all.
Jimmy is a creator that literally needs no introduction, so he enters the stage to nothing but a crazed applause from the eager audience. Him and Todd jump right into their conversation, but not before Jimmy encourages the audience to take notes. “This will really be informational.” 📝
To start off, Jimmy asks Todd one of the questions YouTube creators want to know the most: what goes into the recommendation algorithm?
The answer is a two-parter, Todd explains. “It starts with personalization, understanding the viewer and their viewing history when it comes to channels and individual videos. Then, there’s the performance side, which looks at how a video is performing in general, and how similar viewers reacted to it.”
Contrary to what others might think, these recommendations on YouTube’s homepage and in the “Up Next” feature are actually calculated in real time.
Then the conversation shifts to Jimmy. The audience is all ears as he shares what he would say to up-and-coming YouTube creators. “Make 100 videos, and improve one thing with each video,” he states confidently. “Spend a couple years refining your skills and honing the craft of storytelling, then you can start worrying about monetization.”
He also explains one of the main things he attributes to his creator growth: reinvesting revenue. “I’ve reinvested all the money I’ve made through my content, spending it to create more content. That’s what keeps it growing.” 💸
For more advice from Jimmy and his insights on YouTube, be on the lookout for the Jellysmack x VidCon 2022 recap next week on Creator Post.
I’m heading over to the Industry Track level to catch a session I’ve been looking forward to for months: Jellysmack’s first sponsored panel of the convention, “Make Your Content Work Harder For You.”
We start from the beginning. JP shares that him and Julia combined their passion for food and creativity to start their YouTube channel back in 2013. The idea came about when Julia discovered JP’s fast food eating habits and wanted help him find healthier alternatives. Their first viral video was about how to make a hellthy McDonald’s Big Mac at home 🍔 . And the rest is history.
JP and Julia have a few laughs about how they started, but today, it’s apparent that their hard work and dedication have paid off. They then dive into what has been part of the secret sauce to their success, and that’s being a part of Jellysmack’s Creator Program.
“It was a no brainer,” JP explains. “Once you create a video and upload it, that’s the end, in my opinion. You don’t want to touch it again. We didn’t have the time or resources to re-edit and post on other platforms. That’s what Jellysmack has helped us do.”
“With something as globally appealing as food content, the opportunity is so much broader than just YouTube,” Samir adds.
“If you’re not thinking about going multi-platform, you’re missing out on both distribution and revenue. It’s that simple,” states Lauren.
For more from Colin & Samir, Hellthy Junk Food, and Lauren Schnipper, check back next week on Creator Post.
Across the way, Jellysmack creator partner and beauty extraordinaire Patrick Starrr has been chatting with Pinterest’s Chief Content Officer, Malik Ducard, in the main ballroom. I pop in to catch a little of their conversation about how to show up authentically, both online and IRL.
“Prioritize what’s most important to you, and don’t let anyone get in your way,” states Patrick.
Malik then poses a question that causes Patrick to take a beat: What was your north star? He answers with an anecdote about his humble beginnings.
“I was working at MAC, and on day 5 they made me take off my makeup. It didn’t follow the current makeup trends or convince people to buy their products.”
That may have deterred some from pursuing their passion, but Patrick soldiered on. “Keep turning the page. There’s so many left in your story. Natasha Bedingfield said it best: The rest is still unwritten.”
Years later, MAC contacted Patrick to create 5 global makeup collections for the iconic brand. Talk about a full circle moment. It’s this confidence and perseverance that inspires millions to be nothing but exactly who they are. 💫
Jellysmack knows the power of multi-format content, so I decide to sit in on a panel moderated YouTube’s new Vice President of Americas, Tara Walpert Levy, about the rise of this trend on YouTube.
“YouTube Shorts gave me the opportunity to sample new content and see if it worked,” shares Rosanna. Her channel went from 15 million views per month to over 70 million just with the addition of posting regular Shorts.
Ian had a different success story. “I’ve been on YouTube for 10 years. My videos would get on average about 300 views,” he stated. “During the pandemic, I started posting on Shorts. Over the past two years, I’ve had over 30 million views on Shorts alone, and 5 billion views on my overall channel.”
The potential of short-form content on YouTube (and beyond) is huge, and it’s only going to get bigger. In case you missed it, see how Jellysmack is entering the short-form content space with new solutions for TikTok creators.
Taking a quick break to stop by Jellysmack’s booth on the Industry Track. We have team members there all day to meet with you and chat about how our tech and data-powered solutions help skyrocket growth for video creators. 🚀
While you’re there, make sure to grab some Jellysmack swag and try your luck at the claw machine to see if you can catch a cute plush jelly.
Things are heating up at VidCon, because Jellysmack President Sean Atkins is taking the stage for a fireside chat with TechCrunch reporter, Amanda Silberling. 🔥
He starts by sharing with the crowd Jellysmack’s main goal: solving creator burnout.
“Creator burnout is such a big issue,” Amanda agrees. “But by going cross-platform, creators can feel more security since they can diversify their revenue streams.”
Sean then discusses why creators should partner with Jellysmack over other solution-oriented companies. “There’s infinite opportunity in the creator space. But Jellysmack was founded by three creators who built and scaled a successful multi-platform business themselves. Finding a partner that comes from your same DNA and has interests and goals that align with yours is the most important thing.”
Everything we do ties back to Jellysmack’s value proposition: giving time, value, and money back to the creator.Sean Atkins, President of Jellysmack
So, how do creators decide when it’s time to hire help?
“Being a creator is a journey. At the end of the day, they’re entrepreneurs. You can try to do it all yourself, but personally, I know that you almost always fail,” he laughs. “What is the one thing you really want to do? What do you spend the most time on that you like the least? Most of the time for creators, it’s editing. So then you have to think: if you had the time back that you spent editing, what could you do with it?”
The full recap of Sean’s fireside chat and more Jellysmack VidCon moments will continue on Creator Post next week!
Back on the Creator Track to hear Team TikTok chat about tools, tips, and how to make a name for yourself on the platform. They’re joined by three TikTok creators who’ve done just that: Tati of The Real Tati, My Nguyen of MyHealthyDish, and Tyshon Lawrence.
They all began posting on TikTok, like many, during the pandemic. Today, they’re followed by millions on the platform.
My shares that it took her about 6 months to really find success on TikTok, experimenting with different types of content (even dancing, to her embarrassment) until she found her niche. Tati just put her happy-go-lucky self on screen and fans were instantly enamored. Tyshon looked to other creators he liked on the app itself to really find his direction.
Their favorite effects to use? Green screen was a favorite amongst the group. My also shared how she loves the new reply to comments feature. “The audience is literally telling you what they want you to create, so it’s a great way to build community,” she states.
Tyshon then discusses how important it is to him to represent his own community of Black creators and followers on the platform. “I’m Black and I want to represent my people! I want them to feel a sense of connection, almost like they’re on FaceTime with Tyshon.”
It’s looking like an overall theme is starting to emerge: be authentically yourself, and the success will follow.
I absolutely cannot miss the final nightly happy hour over at Jellysmack’s Featured Creator Lounge at the Hyatt. Pizza and cocktails are flowing (of course) at tonight’s gathering hosted by the amazing Colin & Samir. A well-deserved celebration for a successful panel today!
If you’re at the Hyatt, make sure to stop by and have a drink. It’ll also be open from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. tomorrow for the final day of VidCon.
Thursday, June 23
I’m here at the ACC, but still recovering from last night’s back-to-back celebrations: a pride-themed happy hour at our Jellysmack Featured Creator Lounge with custom cocktails, colorful snacks, and fun swag followed by the Jellysmack x Tubefilter GoKart Pre-Party at K1 Speed. Let’s just say it was an evening to remember (more on that later).
Kicking things off this morning in the main Industry Track ballroom with a warm welcome from Jellysmack’s own Lauren Schnipper and Tubefilter’s Joshua Cohen, co-hosts of the Creator Upload podcast. Funny story—they actually met at VidCon over 10 years ago.
“The connections you make at VidCon can be everlasting,” says Lauren.
They also share a mind-blowing yet inspiring statistic: over 200 million individuals around the world are making some sort of income creating content online. In case you were looking for a sign to take your creator business to the next level, this it. 🚀 And the future is looking nothing but bright.
Hundreds of fans screaming. Phones held high to capture and post a TikTok of TikTok’s biggest female creator (meta, I know). Entering the Spotlight Stage is none other than Charli D’Amelio.
Host and fellow TikTok star, Brandon Baum, begins with some rapid fire questions:
Brandon: Who’s your favorite creator?
Charli: My sister, Dixie. 🥺
Brandon: What would you be doing if you weren’t a creator?
Charli: Dancing professionally full time.
Brandon: What made you start creating content?
Charli: I was just hanging out with my friends, having fun, and wanted to post about it.
Sounds simple enough, right?
Obviously, it didn’t take long for her home-grown videos to go viral. “Viral happens when you least expect it. It’s always the authentic, in-the-moment content that performs best,” they both agree.
Brandon asks what her favorite type of content is to create, and her answer is surprising. “Content for myself that I don’t post. I have about 2,400 drafts of videos that I filmed for fun and will never post.”
Closing out the session, she shares some eye-opening advice for aspiring creators. “Don’t tie yourself down to anything specific or feel trapped creating one type of content. Just have fun and enjoy the ride, no matter which way it goes.”
I make the trek over to the Creator Track rooms to catch Jellysmack’s own VP of Community, Hugo Amsellem, lead a conversation about creator education. Joining him are Kate Ward and Zack Honarvar of Creator Now, a platform that connects creators with communities to help them learn, grow, and build success. 📈
Hugo opens up the panel with an ice breaker. “Look to the person to your left and ask them, if you had a superpower, what would it be?”
“Teleportation,” answers Lenny Pomerantz, Jellysmack’s Director of Communications and Culture.
While teleportation would be nice, most creators in the room would prefer having more hours in the day.
Kate and Zack then dive into some hot tips for up-and-coming creators. “Worry about consistency, week after week. Then, find other creators in your content niche to connect with. Talk about what works, what doesn’t work, and collaborate on new ideas,” shares Zack.
Hugo continues with a few hard-hitting questions for the Creator Now team. “What are some of the top things that creators are doing that feel like work, but actually aren’t productive?” “What can creators do now to start exploring ways to transform their audiences into business equity?”
To hear Kate and Zack’s answers, keep an eye out for our full Jellysmack x VidCon 2022 recap next week on Creator Post.
It’s lunch time. Heading out to the Convention Center’s festival plaza to grab a bite. I’ll be checking out the TikTok activations and Spotify audio tarot card readings along the way.
Before the next panel, I also must go see Jellysmack creator partner MrBeast’s giant “Feastables” gumball machine for myself. Make sure you’re following Jellysmack on Instagram to catch a glimpse of this larger-than-life installation and more fun VidCon 2022 moments.
Next up on the agenda is an Industry Track discussion about the impact of TikTok on entertainment.
We all know how much this short-form platform has completely changed the way we consume content. But today, I get to hear insights straight from the experts: Bryan Thoensen, Head of Content Partnerships at TikTok and Meryl Johnson, VP of Digital Marketing at Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.
Bryan starts by talking about two effects TikTok has had on users, which were highlighted during its rise to popularity in the pandemic. “It’s had a multigenerational effect, as it’s become an outlet for folks of all ages. You see creators like The McFarlands on TikTok filming mom and dad, and the family affair that the D’Amelio’s content has become.”
“Then there’s the community effect,” he continues. “During a period of isolation and loneliness, TikTok brought a sense of community to the world. You felt a part of something.”
Traditional entertainment companies took note. Meryl shares how she leveraged the power of TikTokers to promote the Oscars last year.
“We partnered with hundreds of TikTokers to help promote the show. The hashtag #OscarsAtHome alone generated over 16 billion views. We also hired some [TikTokers] to do red carpet interviews. More celebrities actually stopped for the TikTok stars than traditional media outlets.”
Stars, they’re just like us. 🤩
With the recent announcement of Jellysmack’s new short-form creator solutions, I thought I’d sit in on Cracking the Code: YouTube Shorts, a panel hosted by Tim Jablonski, SVP of Programming and Audience Development of Little Monster. Tim dives deep into data from over 20,000 YouTube Shorts channels and 200,000 videos to uncover trends and learnings.
“YouTube Shorts represent a new path to success on the platform and can also serve as companion pieces to long-form content,” he shares.
If you’re a creator looking to expand into YouTube’s newest content format, here are a few key takeaways you might want to consider when creating your videos:
- Create Shorts that are at least 15 seconds long to earn more views
- Tell a complete story: setup, conflict, punchline, resolution. Cool visuals alone aren’t enough.
- Try to consistently post at least 1-3 videos a day to gain momentum
Tim also shares a great example of an existing long-form YouTube creator finding success on Shorts, and that just happens to be Jellysmack creator partner How Ridiculous.
“Their long-form content is a series of smaller, competition-based dopamine hits. It’s easy to break out one event into a 20 second Shorts video that still tells a story and gives their audience exactly what they want to see.”
That’s a wrap on day 1 panels! Now, it’s time to party. Heading over to the Jellysmack Featured Creator Lounge at the Hyatt for the Crocs Summer Crush Happy Hour. If you’re around and have a Hyatt wristband, stop by to customize your own pair of fun-colored Crocs with our Jellysmack jibbitz. While you pick your pair, enjoy croctails 🍹 , a live DJ, and all the vibes.