Listen to Tyler Oakley: Dare to Be You

During this year’s &THEN event in LA I got to see Tyler Oakley — one of my video inspirations — speak and explain the intimate connection viewers and vloggers can have, especially when the video maker makes regular lasting connections with their audience. But you don’t have to be a YouTube star to do this!

This past week I was in LA with some of the Target Marketing team for DMA’s &THEN conference and wow … it was a whirlwind 3 days.

Not-so-fresh off my red eye flight, I have several blog posts started and even more notes to shape up, but what I want to share with you this week is a realization I had during the Tuesday morning inspirational keynote featuring Beau Avril of Google Preferred, Dan Weinstein of Collective Digital Studio, and Tyler Oakley, Youtube personality, author, and activist.

When introducing Tyler, they showed this quick clip about #DaretoBeYou, which he launched in late 2015:

And that’s when it hit me:

Tyler Oakley Dare to be YouDuring the keynote, titled “The New Face of Creativity,” Tyler made an interesting point about YouTube videos and vloggers in general. He explained that the level of intimacy between viewers and the YouTubers/vloggers is heightened because it’s them watching on a screen, usually closer to the body than a TV or movie screen.

Tyler likened it to Facetiming, and explained how many viewers consider YouTube personalities to be like friends — they share personal stories and make connections.

But you don’t have to be a YouTube personality to do this.

Since launching Sass Marketing a little over a year ago and “What Were They Thinking?” less than five months ago, you’ve tuned in, watched and hopefully laughed at my antics. Or maybe shook your fist at your screen when I said something you didn’t agree with.

My favorite reaction, though, is when you take the time to leave a comment, write me an email or share a tweet telling me exactly what you think of this series.

Or in the case of this past week, came up to me during &THEN and simply said, “I love your videos.”

This reminds me that I made the right decision to be myself — loud, sassy with eyerolls to spare — or as Tyler says, “dare to be you.” Sass Marketing/What Were They Thinking isn’t just an act I put on … it’s me, and it’s more myself than some of the work I’ve done in the past, but that’s partly because I was still finding who I am in all of this.

I’m fortunate that I have this space in the marketing world to do this, the support from my colleagues and mostly importantly, you.

Tyler Oakley You Dare to Be YouI’ll continue to dare to be me in order to delight you and make you laugh, but I need you to dare to be you. A world of people being their genuine, true selves is a world of beauty and limitless possibility.


Author: Melissa Ward

Melissa Ward is the managing editor for Target Marketing, and she has opinions! More importantly, she's a nerd for great copy and design, a disciple of authenticity, and really loves it when marketers get it right.

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