Content creation will sometimes go in a different direction than influencers intend. The vague destiny holds unexpected opportunities that often present themselves in the form of silly viral videos.
In today’s interview, we sit down with Floatdagoat, also known as “Abu Yusuf,” the Somali-American creator who built a career from immigrant culture.
Read along as we examine the career journey of the popular TikTok comedy creator, and break down Float’s success story.
Who is Abdulahi Osman Outside of TikTok?
Full-time student, content creator, and streamer Abdulahi Osman is a young creative with two faces of online characters that highly resemble his true character.
Many may recognize Abdulahi for the funny immigrant character he plays, while others know him as the funny, sarcastic American streamer.
Abdulahi tells us, “I’m a quiet person, believe it or not. Unless I know you and we vibe, you’ll see another side of me. However, I don’t really think about this question, as my life and online presence are highly intertwined. My best answer is that I’m the same TikTok guy anyone would expect me to be, just quieter.”
The Story of Abu Yusuf and how it all started
“Abu Yusuf is a social media character inspired by my dad,” replies Float when asking him how everything came to be.
He adds, “I never expected for my Abu Yusuf skit to blow up, but that’s the beauty of it, as a spontaneous skit made up my whole online persona for years.
The inspiration came from the similarity of the word “abusive” and the Arab name Abu Yusuf; funnily enough, people loved it. The skit blew up overnight, but it took me a while to figure out why it was that resonated with followers.”
It is common to piggyback off a viral idea on Tiktok, and that’s what Abdulahi was attempting for
a few weeks before realizing the secret to his video’s success was the relatable personality he played.
“I tried making the same video in different scenarios; I used the Abu Yususf joke a few times, but nothing generated more views than when I played the character himself. It certainly was not what I was going for, but when something clicks, you just gotta keep elaborating upon it.”
Keys to Creating Viral Relatable Skits
Observe Interactions Happening Around You
A common characteristic in many successful creators we’ve met and interviewed is attention to detail, a key differentiator in delivering a mass-comprehended message.
From reactions to specific parts of a skit to making the videos more personalized, Abdulahi tells us, “Anything is funnier if you can relate, but before turning it into a skit, observe the situation in real life.”
He elaborates, “The best of acting scenes feel natural and unforced, but in order to master that level of professionalism in acting, you must first spend endless hours observing people’s nonverbal communication.”
Create Content with No Dead-End.
Recent TikTok algorithm findings suggest that people who create content related to other videos on their page are bound to perform better.
However, there is still room for creativity and experiments outside of short-form content; as Floatdagoat says, “The only time I break the Abu Yusuf character is during my live stream.”
He tells us, “You can best perceive previous videos as an old product that people bought; check out the comments or reviews of your old product, and you’ll get a better idea of what to recycle and incorporate in your new creatives.”
Emphasize “hard to understand” scenes with body language and expressions.
Pursuing an extremely niche category of comedy, Abdulahi was able to make many viral skits because the character resembles almost every immigrant’s situation.
He Tells us, “The main inspo of my viral character comes from my dad and noticing how he talks to his Somali Friends and family. The observed body language and facial expressions he makes are practiced, perfected, and shot on the spot.”
Float tells us that any United States or Canadian immigrant can relate to my content, from playing the strict immigrant father to integrating these shared values into challenge and reaction videos.
For more context, here are Abdulahi’s most-viewed videos
Does your content rely more on Acting or Comedy?
“Although acting is the ultimate objective of my creative career, and I’m getting better at it by the day, anyone that knows me will tell you that I’m naturally funny. However, it’s not just me; Somalis, in general, have a uniquely loud and bold sense of humor, and therefore I’d say it’s more focused on Comedy.”
Tips for Aspiring Creators
The advice and tips gathered from our interview with Abdulai Osman are almost what every creator will tell you, consistency and finding a niche. However, he gave us insights into something only a few talk about, linking all your videos together.
Here’s everything Floatdagoat recommends:
Find a Gap in The Market.
“Creating content around everything and anything can be misleading to the algorithm, and like any marketer will tell you, repetition is vital. When someone finds you through a particular video, like in my case, they expect to see more of the same content.”
Make every Video Linked To The One Before it.
“Linking every video one way or another to the one before will help viewers recall the general context of your creation. Although it is another way of saying, “Stay true to your niche,” it can be as simple as creating videos based on the comments and requests you receive from viewers.”
He elaborates, “You don’t need to create the same skit or video until it gets boring, but rather take elements from a successful video and incorporate it into your next. For me, that looks like reusing the Abu Yusuf character, from attire to accent, and integrating him into new ideas.”
Capitalize On Exposure When Possible.
“Finally, one of the most essential elements of making viral pieces is claiming exposure and taking credit for your work,” says Abdulahi.
He explains, “Some of my best videos went viral on other accounts that shared my video rather than mine. Therefore others were taking credit for my hard work. In this case, reposting, asking people who shared it to give credit, and commenting on all shared videos is your best option.”
Key Takeaways From the Interview
As a young viral creator, there are so many lessons and inspirations in the wholehearted efforts Abdullahi puts into his content.
The most important is that sometimes the least expected videos will blow up, there is a reason people love it. You need to figure that out and create a formula of success based on your previous viral content.