Jimmy shares he was feeling bored at his repetitive job and was looking for a change, so he decided to try making a few YouTube videos. He showed his first video on corporate careers to his friends, who thought his video skills were promising.
“Then, I made another video, just as a test. I made another video of me playing this game called Overwatch, which back then was pretty popular. I also showed it to some of my friends, and they were like, “wow, this is so much fun. I don’t see how this is not going to be popular on the Internet.”
Jimmy continued creating gaming videos, which he shared were more fun for him to make. He continued building his channel and saw some traction during the first six months of being on YouTube. This growth wasn’t enough for him to make a living, but he felt it was a positive sign about the potential of growing this into a career.
Streaming and Posting on TikTok
His channel saw huge growth after he started live streaming and posting on TikTok.
“I’m kind of an older generation compared to most gamers, and I wasn’t aware that there was TikTok and Twitch… but some of my viewers on YouTube started sending me messages [saying] I like what you do, maybe you should start posting some of your clips on TikTok and get more followers doing that.”
Posting on TikTok worked to Jimmy’s advantage, and he quickly went from 2,000 to 10,000 subscribers.
He notes, “There was nothing to stress out about [with] streaming. I was going to record a video anyway, might as well stream and record that too, so it’s an efficient way of adding another avenue for content.”
He reached 100,000 subscribers on YouTube around the 10-month mark, which is when he felt that people started to take him seriously.
Jimmy’s 2nd Channel
Jimmy shares that he recently created a second YouTube channel where he doesn’t play video games at all.
He shares that this is “just one way to appeal to a different segment of audiences where people that would never play video games, never watch video game content [may watch me.] I just feel like it’s a better way to showcase my personality a little more naturally.”
He is planning to share funny and silly videos. For example, Jimmy plans on creating a video of him spending 24 hours in a Korean love hotel, which he thinks will appeal to a large audience.
Jimmy shares that his most viewed content often showcases his online conversations with strangers while he games.
“To be honest, I’m not a skilled gamer. I would say I’m just around average… I think what my audience likes is me creating this really natural but funny conversation with strangers. One thing I can do better than other people is creating a conversation with a complete stranger who shares nothing in common with me.”
He adds, “I might be better as an interviewer than an interviewee because I can give more. It’s kind of like a late-night talk show, except it’s in a video game.”
The Secret Behind His Success
Jimmy shares that TikTok has been an enormous part of his success.
“TikTok has a very good, extremely fair algorithm where if people like your video… it will get promoted, and TikTok is going to push it.”
On the other hand, he shares that YouTube requires existing followers to help you take off, making it a slower platform to grow on.
@okamijimmy When I touched a girl’s hand🤯 #foryou #fyp #valorantclips #lol #comedy #funny #videogame #valorant #gamer #memes #asian #anime #weeb #korea ♬ original sound – okamijimmy
“If you are consistent with good videos, then it will eventually go well, but it’s a lot more difficult.”
He notes that he hasn’t found a significant marketing strategy for Twitch other than making friends with other large streamers. Viewer sharing is a critical element in growing on Twitch, but this can be harder for someone who is not already established.
Jimmy’s Brand Work
For his collaborations with video game companies, Jimmy usually makes his typical content with a one-minute segment discussing the product at the beginning of the video. Then, he asks his viewers to check it out. Other campaigns involve him playing the game for the length of the video or during a live stream.
He shares that his followers are very savvy about brand work.
“They [the viewers] understand the nature of the content creation business pretty well, so they understand that if they download the game or the app, it’s beneficial for me, and if they don’t want to pay me directly, which many of them can’t, they will play the game out of support [for me.]”
Regarding collaboration analytics, brands typically won’t share the conversion metrics for Jimmy. However, he knows it went well if they come back to him for another campaign.
Being a Content Creator
Jimmy shares that the most challenging part of being a content creator is actually being a gamer.
“I’d say being a gamer is easy for a lot of people because a lot of people play video games for hours anyways. It’s a little difficult for me because I have so much time, and I don’t want to play the same game over and over and over again.”
He shares that he played the same game for almost two years straight because that’s what people wanted to see from him, which wasn’t ideal.
@okamijimmy Impressed Japanese girl noise #foryou #fyp #valorantclips #lol #comedy #funny #videogame #valorant #gamer #memes #asian #anime #weeb ♬ original sound – okamijimmy
Another challenge is momentum, which can quickly bring a creator up or down.
For example, “if your numbers start to perform poorly on Twitch or YouTube…on a lot of these platforms, your next failure is going to be more punishing like if you upload a video that kind of didn’t do well. Then, the next video is going to be really difficult to get a lot of views, even [if you] make a good video, so there’s little room for mistakes.”
When asked about his dream collab, Jimmy had an immediate answer.
His dream collab? Coca-Cola
As for the future, he shares that he would also like to see a fair revenue split with social media platforms. Jimmy notes he’d love to see more effective categorizing of audiences.
He also wants to see improvements made to the algorithm that will help audiences find the best content for them personally. He provides the example that, in a male-dominated industry like gaming, attractive female content creators have an advantage, especially in the beginning.
However, he would love to see if the algorithm could also factor in people who are interested in watching gamers who are humorous or really good at the game.
“I think their discovery algorithm can improve a little more.”
As for his plans, he shares that he is excited to work on his second channel and creating a more sustainable way of working as a content creator and balancing his personal life.