African YouTubers in a Bid to Expand Pan-African Creative Economy
NAIROBI, 18TH NOVEMBER 2019: A visit by Nigerian YouTuber Dimma Umeh brought together Kenyan YouTube content creators in a workshop where they discussed the importance of collaboration and how YouTubers can use their voice to build the creative economy.
From the discussions, it emerged that collaboration is now an important part of a YouTuber’s growth. Comedian Njugush, who took part in a panel discussion together with other YouTubers Kabi of the WaJesus Family, Kangai Mwiti and Dimma Umeh, challenged content creators to use their platforms to do something with a purpose. “I believe my role is not just to make people laugh, but also to pass a message or two. This is honorable,” he said.
Creators understand the power of their content and how these can influence their viewers and fans. Such engagements will not only help them in mitigating the challenges they encounter, but in building better brand content that is meaningful to consumers.
Guest YouTuber Dimma Umeh urged that even as creators collaborate, they must be consistent. She observed that collaboration will help creators have diversity in their content which appeals to different audience segments.
Dimma also believes that creators need to pay close attention to their analytics. This is because it allows a creator to know where their fan base is.
“For a very long time, about 60 to 80 percent of my views were coming from the US, about 10 percent from Nigeria and about 5 percent was scattered all over the place. As far as I am concerned, if you are trying to grow on YouTube, you shouldn’t be targeting people in Kenya alone. I want to create content that every single African who comes to my channel can enjoy,” she added.
Kangai Mwiti, one of the first make-up artists on YouTube in 2012, stressed the importance of mental health for content creators She urged content creators to take care of their physical, emotional and mental well-being so that they can be able to create effectively..
Kabi wa Jesus expressed the fear that some creators have of expressing themselves around certain topics. “There are times when we creators have some things that we would like to say but do not have enough courage or feel good enough to say them due to the possible fear of what will happen next,” he intimated.
Kenyan YouTubers have an opportunity to have their content reach larger audiences. This is because Kenya has the highest mobile watch time in Sub Saharan Africa – 80% watch their YouTube content on mobile devices. This level of access enables the content posted on YouTube to reach audiences from diverse backgrounds around the world.