To all who love makeup, it’s time to set your pallets and brushes aside, because you're about to learn from the queen of makeup: Nikkie Tutorials. Usually, Dutch YouTube sensation Nikkie de Jager educates her followers on the latest makeup tips and trends, but today we will look at her work and draw lessons from it to improve your work as a content creator. The idea behind the platform 'Nikkie Tutorials' came into existence when she was lying sick in her bed one day, watching MTV’s The Hills. The makeup looks from one of the starring roles in the series, Lauren Conrad, caught her eye and on YouTube Nikkie discovered videos that described how to recreate the makeup looks used on the show. From this moment, watching makeup tutorial videos became her new obsession and eventually, she decided to create her own YouTube channel.

Her channel 'Nikkie Tutorials' developed into one of the leading platforms on makeup tutorials. She uploaded her first YouTube video in 2008 and has been traveling the world and sharing innovative content ever since. With her 12 million online followers and her collaborations with, among others, Kim Kardashian, Marc Jacobs, and Snoop Dogg, Nikkie Tutorials proves time after time that she's a worthy content creator and online influencer. But how does she makes sure to create innovative content that, throughout the past 11 years, remains relevant and interesting for her audience? In this Creator Friday article, we identify the success formula of Nikkie Tutorials and provide you with six tips, inspired by her work, on how to improve your content.

#1 Involve your followers in your content

Nikkie Tutorials always focuses her content on the involvement of her followers. This is not only a great way to keep innovating your content, but it also stimulates your followers to feel like they're part of you as a creator. Nikkie Tutorials achieves this by creating a piece of content as a response to comments that she receives from her audience. For example, one of her followers once mentioned that Nikkie was unable to recreate a specific makeup look, which she accepted as a challenge for one of her new tutorial videos. In many of her videos, Nikkie explains how she came up with the specific look, idea or theme of the video or to which exact piece of content her video is a response.

If you notice that your followers often respond to your content with questions or suggestions, try thinking of creative ways to use that as inspiration for your next piece of content. By doing so, you involve your audience in your work. Also, keep an eye out for content in which you get tagged by others. Nikkie Tutorials once got tagged in a game that used her as a role model, without her knowing. She got tagged by her followers in other content about the game, so she decided to make a video about it. By responding to tags, your followers get the feeling that they can make a difference by reacting to your content, which will stimulate them to keep posting comments on your content. This will stimulate the interaction between your content and the audience.

#2 Act in accordance with trends and trending topics

Another method that Nikkie Tutorials uses to continuously create innovative and original content, is by responding to trending topics and the latest trends on, in her case, makeup. She doesn’t merely show a couple of makeup looks, but she dives into the latest trends and shows her followers step by step how to apply these trends in their looks. When you process the latest trends in your content, your followers will be extra eager to view your creations, because they know that they will always be informed on trending topics. If you don’t do this yet, make sure to closely follow developments in your field of work and apply these developments in your content at the earliest possible convenience.

#3 Be personal and create a bond between you and your followers

In her videos, Nikkie Tutorials always tries to go all the way. She knows like no other how to give her videos a unique twist and create a positive atmosphere in her content. Nowadays, her followers don’t only watch her videos because they want to learn something, but also because they want to be entertained. Sometimes she tells an exciting story during her tutorial videos; something that happened to her in her youth or maybe a blunder that she experienced. Her openness allows her followers to construct a ‘personal’ bond with her.

In addition to this, Nikkie tends to be very honest in her videos. She recently posted a video in which she apologized for her behavior during a time when she, as mentioned by her, accepted a lot of paid collaborations. Some people had complained about this, because they felt like her videos were all about paid collaborations. However, Nikkie explained in one of her videos that this was not always the case. There was a time in her career in which she accepted many paid collaborations, but she also mentioned that she never promoted products that she didn’t believe in.

By addressing these rumors openly and honestly, she shows a certain level of vulnerability and approachability which contributes to her credibility as a content creator. When correctly managed, these moments of honesty in your content can serve as a win-win situation for you and your followers.

#4 Turn followers into fans

Another skill that Nikkie Tutorials excels in, is that she turns her followers into true fans. One aspect that contributes to this is the fact that she calls her followers 'Glow Babies'. By giving her followers a name she creates a feeling that they belong to an in-group. As a follower of Nikkie Tutorials, you are not just a follower, but you're a fan with a special title. This feeling of exclusiveness increases the chance that your followers will turn into fans.

This is something that is not only done by creators like Nikkie Tutorials, but also by artists such as Lady Gaga, whose fans identify themselves as ‘Little Monsters’ because she gave them this name. Now, we're not going to tell every content creator that they should give their followers a specific name, but we do encourage creators to think of ways to increase the loyalty of their followers. Think of specials with top fans or mention the names of your loyal followers in your work by giving them a short shout-out.

#5 Dare to experiment

“If you try to be everything to everyone, you will be nothing to no one.” 

If you visit the Instagram page of Nikkie Tutorials, you immediately notice her over-the-top, extravagant looks. Can she predict whether people will like these looks? No. Does she, besides all the positive reactions, receive a lot of criticism on her looks? Yes. Welcome to the online world. People tend to not hold back their opinions, especially on the internet, but this should never be a reason for you to stop creating what you want to create.

That's why we recommend you to always go all the way in your content and experiment with your material. First of all, by doing so you stand out in comparison to the numerous competitors online. In addition to this, it will inspire you for new content, which might distinguish you from your competitors as well. 

If you create content on a specific topic and you wish for people to associate you with this topic, then you should strive to be as represented as possible in everything surrounding this topic. Nikkie Tutorials can frequently be seen on TV when it regards something in her area of expertise, namely makeup (and nowadays also for items that have nothing to do with makeup). She accepts collaborations with big names in the industry and processes this in her content in a fun and unique way. Honestly, who manages to have Snoop Dogg doing a voice-over in a makeup tutorial?

#6 Collaborate, collaborate, collaborate

Maybe you don’t see any direct possibilities to collaborate as a starting creator, but there are multiple ways to start small. It doesn’t necessarily need to be as big as hosting a show or collaborating with a celebrity. If you make travel vlogs, for example, try arranging workshops for customers of a travel agency and have the agency use it as content on their online channels. In case you are an upcoming musician, approach a local café or bar and try making arrangements for you to perform there or give workshops or classes in the musical arts. Turn these collaborations into online content and share it on your Social Media channels, as well as the channels of the venue.

There are many options to engage in collaborations that will contribute to your brand awareness as a creator. Keep in mind that this process requires a lot of effort and on top of that can be time-consuming. 

These were the tips for this Creator Friday article, inspired by Nikkie Tutorials. We hope that we provided you with enough input to go out and create the most fabulous content. We are currently located in New York City, so if you are a creator based in the Big Apple we are more than happy to meet up and assist you in your journey to create a sustainable income as a content creator. To those who wish to apply today’s tips in their work, let us know how it helped you with your content! #sharingiscaring