How do you build close ties with thousands and thousands of strangers online? “You have to be yourself and not copy someone else’s style,” advises Noémie Lacerte, who belongs to the select club of Quebec youtubers whose videos on YouTube attract millions of views. Multichannel agencies and networks have understood that what attracts more than a billion visitors to Google’s platform is authenticity. “We’re genuine, we’re true to ourselves, and no one puts words in our mouths,” says Noémie, who has made self-esteem her focus.
In summer 2013, then aged 16, Noémie posted her first video on YouTube. She’d dreamed of becoming a lawyer but then discovered how passionately interested she was in this activity. “It happened so suddenly,” she recalls. “And it become so important in my life… like a vocation or a job.”
L’un des plus populaire Youtubeur québécoise, Noémie Lacerte
Noémie is now studying communications. For the past year, she has received support from Goji Studios, a Quebecor Media Group initiative that fosters several youtubers by providing them with expertise in growing their audience and generating benefits from their content. “Goji is like a big family. When I need help or when I have questions, I have all of these colleagues I can turn to,” states Noémie, who in winter 2017 had about 100,000 YouTube subscribers and more than 7 million views.
Even with support from Goji, she continues to do everything on her own. “My videos are really my own creations. I place the camera and tripod. I come up with content ideas. And I edit the whole thing.” She is also active on Instagram and Facebook, but in her opinion YouTube is where she can be the most natural and spontaneous.
Last August, faced with the pressure of maintaining her good-humoured persona online, Noémie considered giving it all up. After some seal-searching, she decided to change her image on social media. “I decided to admit that sometimes things aren’t so great.” Ever conscious of the impact she can have on her fans – for the most past, teens – she tries to be a positive model, like a friend or older sister.
Only a small part of the revenue generated by her channel comes directly from YouTube. Product placement generates more revenue. “Companies have lots to gain by approaching youtubers,” she says. “It’s more effective than on TV, more authentic. You know the youtubers you follow, you know they’re honest with you.”
To safeguard her credibility, Noémie presents only products she genuinely loves. The companies she represents can choose between subtle or direct approaches: “When I’m paid for something, I want my audience to know about it.”
Noémie Lacerte’s dream is to live her life on camera. “Earning a living doing what you love is everyone’s dream, and I hope to continue doing what I love my whole life!”