April 6, 2023

How to Make It Big on TikTok

How to Make It Big on TikTok

Today Greg is joined by JT Barnett, a digital creator and founder of BarnettX and CreatorX, where he helps SMBs and Fortune 500 companies create content. In this episode, Greg and JT talk about viral growth versus slow growth, tools and workflows, and creators you should be following. 

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Twitter: https://twitter.com/gregisenberg
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Production Team:
JT Barnett:

0:00 - Intro
0:47 - TikTok trends vs TikTok storytelling
5:26 - How to think about branding
19:23 - Creators to watch
28:04 - Tools and workflows for short-form content
35:11 - JT's favorite creators and why


Greg: First of all, JT Barnett,if people are listening to this on audio, get on YouTube because you're wearing sunglasses. I think you're the first person on the show that's wearing sunglasses.

JT: today I felt like bringing the heat, and I had these glasses and I was like, I feel like the glasses gimme a little bit of a mood for my day. and so I was like, you know what? I'm gonna bring the fucking heat today. I'm gonna wear the glasses. I'm wearing them everywhere, and tonight I'm going to talk at USC and I'm gonna wear them there too.

Greg: as much as I brought you on here for your fashionista vibes, which are a plus, the number one reason I brought you on is you are a wealth of knowledge, a fountain of knowledge when it comes to creators and how to build audiences, how to build businesses on top of it.

JT: Thank you.

Greg: Maybe we can start with what are you seeing on TikTok to start with, like what are some accounts that are, are blowing up? Like what are trends on TikTok? A lot of people here wanna create an account, wanna go viral, uh, algorithm changing all the time. What are you seeing

JT: the first thing that I always go to is, Is storytelling because I, I don't like to encourage people to do trends because I think that trends are fleeting. trends are not a sustainable model for people to use in perpetuity. And so I always lean on tell your stories, like tell your own life story.

Tell the challenges that you've been through, or particularly because I think the people that are listening to this are entrepreneurial or business-minded. Tell your company story. Talk about the things that you're going through or the way that you got to where you are or the ideas that got you to even starting the product.

it's so hard to find longevity when you're just following the trend of the day. and that's how TikTok became popular, was literally what's popping today, trends of the day. And it's just hard. It's just really hard to consistently follow that. Um, so I highly recommend people to lean into something that's way more sustainable and actually cuts through the noise, which is original stories.

Greg: what are frameworks or, or ways to think about how to pull stories out of people? Because we all have

JT: Great question. Great question. I, I even, I even like. Wrote out what I would deem the actual formula for a video. I went back and looked at about 150 videos that had worked for either for me in the past or had worked for other people that I liked. And it seems like the linear progression of a story, which is which very well correlates to the narrative arc of an actual story.

And that, children read some sort of intro, which I call a. captivates the audience. Then there's some sort of setting, then there's a conflict, and then the conflict gets resolved. And then there's a call to action. So like literally if you take those five things, I'll, I'll, I'll say it in kind of TikTok or I even would take short form cuz majority of the content now is worked on every, any platform, but a hook, a setting, a conflict, a resolution, and a call to action.

Those are the five things that I. I try to incorporate in my videos, and I think the call to action is dependent on what the video is. There doesn't need to be a hard sell. It could just be like, hope this helps. It could be no. Wishing you a great day. It could be something that easy, people consume with their emotions. And when you create stories, it's able to get people involved emotionally. and that's what you want. That's what you gets people to actually care about what you're. So that's the formula that I, I try to follow in a lot of my videos.

Greg: So what you're saying is it's almost like ignore the trends for now. Just focus on writing really good stories. Start by writing, and then you know, once I've written several stories, how do you think about filming,


JT: the actual, like in the weeds. process that I think everybody should try and do to make it the easiest on themselves is first, write out what you're going to say. Then go and record it on your, like voice notes. So go into a, an audio only draft. Then once you have that audio draft, go and look at the words that you're saying in the video and think about is there any archival footage, any camera roll footage, any things that I.

That are on Google, any articles that I was in, any footage that correlates to the words that I'm saying in this story, and then go and place it over it. that'll get you to probably, you probably have like, you know, 40% of the video will be archival footage, things from the past.

And then you look at the other words that are like, that's a lot of filler content. Like I was sitting. You don't have a, you might not have a video of you sitting in your camera roll. So you go and film those filler ones and then that at the end of you filling those, uh, filming those filler ones, now you have a compiled video that is completed with the audio only file B roll filler content.

And then I go a step further and add text over top of it. That's not necessary. You could honestly do the auto text that's on TikTok and Instagram and all those, and that just works just fine. Uh, but that's the formula.

Greg: And how do you think about. A brand account versus a personal account. you know, what's the expression? People follow people, not brands.

JT: to me it's the same. I think you, I think you brands need to act more like human beings for them to build followings. they need to relate to, to people because that's who's consuming it. Um, here's the way that I think people think about it versus brands. When people make content, they're not selling as much because they don't have a product to sell.

They're just like putting their shit out there. They're putting their content out there, hoping that somebody likes it. Ideally, somebody does, companies have a product that they've worked hard on, so they approach content, uh, in a way. We have the best product in the market. We gotta sell this. People need to know about it.

Let's push it out there and force it on onto people's, uh, for you pages or timelines. And as consumers, when you see that you're, you, you immediately wanna swipe past it because you're like, what is this? Like, this is, I'm here to watch things that actually provide me value not to get sold to. If I wanted to get sold to, I'd go walk in the mall or go on am my Amazon app, or let you know, things like that. Immediately. It's an easy way for people to just want to click to the next. Um, that's why the companies that think about who they're making the content for and actually provide that end user value are the ones that are able to build audiences. So I think you need to be thinking more like a person does

Greg: What's a non-obvious example of a brand doing really well on short form?

JT: Bo.

Greg: Really.

JT: they make these original videos that are humorous.

Almost like infomercials, but they're not infomercials. Then they're like playing on the fact that they're bringing infomercials to TikTok and, but they're very gen zish and they just do a really good job of creating and understanding the context and understanding the platform. So that's a good example for you guys to look up

Greg: Bowes see how they're doing. Wow. 329,000 followers.

JT: Yeah. And like go and look through. Go and look through some of their videos that have popped a little bit. I don't know how their content is doing today, but go scroll down a little if it's not popping right now. And look at some of the videos that have, and it's like, it's not trying, they're not trying to be the coolest people in the world.

They're like, they're understanding the humor of Gen Z, the lingo, the culture, how TikTok works, and they're getting people to stop and pay attention.

Greg: That's right. Yeah. And they've got, they've got a lot of views. Like I'm looking at their pinned. PIN videos, like 1.1 million, 2000002.7, so something's

JT: So, and that's a big, big company. Let now let me go smaller company for a lot of people that are listening. I think the best. company in the world right now at doing content is Midday Squares.

I don't think there's anybody that comes even close to them, um, in terms of storytelling in an organic way and knowing the end consumer and understanding the context of the platforms, um, they invest heavily into their content. They know that it's something that's gonna drive the business, and I don't see any other brands taking it as serious as. And that's why they're disrupting that industry. That's why they're making me a dent, um, is because people see their content and go, oh shit, what is this? And then they back it up with having a good product.

So I think that companies that are starting today, or even companies that aren't starting, companies that are at a place right now where they're trying to disrupt, the easiest way for you to disrupt is to actually get people to genuinely care about what you're doing. Then I go, what's the easiest way to do that?

it's gonna be going where everybody's consuming. That is our phones, that is social media, that are the pla, that is the platforms that we're on and spending majority of our days on, our majority of our time on, and learning how to execute there.

Greg: I'll tell you the story of the company before midday squares that went nowhere, which obviously isn't talked about. So I actually had an idea for a candle company focused on men, I chatted about it with This guy Casey Carls, who's Jake Carl's, uh, brother Leslie and Jake Carls started Midday Squares with Nick and basically I bought a third of the company and Jake was the CEO of the company. And I, and the other two-thirds were owned by the Carl's. we spent a bunch of money on. This like really funny video that was supposed to be the launch of it, right?

It was around the time. This is like 20, I don't know, 16 or 17. Um, it was around the time where it was like Kickstarters were really big and the idea was if you could have like a really funny video, it's gonna spread across the internet. So we spent all this time building this, this video, all this energy posted, it got no.

And through that, I think Jake learned it's not about creating one video a year. Basically it's about creating one video an hour and building a brand for yourself.

JT: It totally makes sense to me because it's very in line with the brands that we work with or that we get on conversations with that are like, how do we go viral? And for me, virality is such a fleeting. Thing for people because one, going viral, a single time for something that you don't actually care about is actually detrimental to your business and to your algorithm as a platform, because now all of your new content is gonna be shown to that audience.

That isn't the actual audience that you're trying to go after. So that's one thing. But second is the real relationships that you're trying to build with your c. Aren't built in one video. They aren't built from the single video that the person saw. They're built from the videos that they see after that one video.

The smaller ones that don't pop off that you think didn't do anything because they got four or five, six, 7,000 views, but they trickled into the people that now actually care about you, and those are the community that you're trying to really build. And that's the way that I look at it. And that's why I was posting three times a day for a while on TikTok because the videos that would not pop would be the ones that people would message me and be like, yo, I really felt this one, this one actually impacted me.

And those are the people that will show up to a meetup or will buy the product. Virality is something that I think confuses a lot of people. Um, and so that totally makes sense to me.

Greg: Yeah, I. My first question was basically to you on this interview was how to go viral, and I kind of half expected you to be like, you shouldn't want to go viral. Like vi virality is a bad word in our world.

You wanna go viral

JT: As a byproduct.

Greg: exactly.

That's correct.

JT: Virality as a byproduct of putting out the content you genuinely wanna put out is a home run. I look at it like this. Here's the way I look at all content. It's a relationship. When you go and you meet people, when you move to a new city and you're trying to make. You don't hang out with somebody one time and be like, we're the best of friends.

You're gonna be at my wedding. I love you. I'll show up anywhere. It takes time. You have to put in repetitions. You have to communicate, you have to have like-minded interests. You have to care for that person. You have to like, you know, you have to build. That's the same thing as an audience. We get on conversations with people that are like, look, we have a month and a half where our team is investing.

We're ready to go. If this doesn't work in a month and a half though, our CFO or our team is, we're pulling this. We're not doing TikTok anymore. We're not doing Instagram. We need content to work asap. I look at it, I'm like, you need to build for years. You need to be building for a long period of time. You're trying to build relationships.

Greg: Well, it's the same, it's, it's very similar to like how SEO works. You know, SEO isn't something that, you know, you change a few metatags on your website and all of a sudden you're gonna get a hundred thousand. People to your website tomorrow, you invest in SEO because I mean, you literally use the word invest because you know, you're constantly climbing up the rankings for these keywords that work and that you want, and then at a certain point you're just, you.

12 months from now sitting on a beach and people are just showing up to your website regardless. And that's the same thing with social in general, which is people have this expectation that, you know, I don't get a hundred thousand Twitter followers, I don't get a hundred thousand Instagram followers.

This, you know, this video doesn't get a million views or a hundred thousand views or even a thousand views. I should just like quit. And like the way I see it is, it's very much like r and d marketing R and. with r and d, you set a budget, 18 months, 24 months, let's go experiment.

Let's, the exact same way people should look at being a creator and and creating content You figure out like what content works, why it works while you're building the product. and then hopefully you don't go viral on day one. Hopefully you go viral on month four.

JT: love it. Completely agree.

Greg: Am I hired at your company? What, what,

JT: Yeah.


Greg: What does your company do?

JT: Um, so we're, we're all things content, but the things that we specialize in is short form organic. So we'll either consult on your current team that you already have and we'll teach you guys how to improve your videos, write stories, create the content in-house, um, for select few.

We don't do this for everybody. For, for select few, we'll actually edit the content ourselves. Like we'll take your story, we'll make it ourselves. And hand it back to you. And then the second kind of area that we work on is we go into companies and build their content arm for them. So it's really hard to find creators that want to come and work for companies.

What do people do when they try and find people that they want to hire? They go on LinkedIn, they go on Indeed. They search content creator. I'm a content creator. I know a thousand content creators. Not one of them would go and put their job profile on LinkedIn or or on Upwork and be looking for jobs. you don't find creators in that same typical way that you would find other employees.

You find them through the platforms. And so what I have done is started making videos, talking about is there anybody on here that would wanna work for a company that would actually wanna go in and run their account and not like one video a month or two videos a a month. Like an influencer, like literally you're with their team every day making content or every couple days making. Lo and behold, I got 1500 people overnight that wanted to do that. Now that's turned into 7,000. So we have like a database of these creators that want to go and work for companies. we will go into businesses and actually employ these people. Like, we'll, we'll introduce them to the team.

The team will hire, uh, to the company. The company will hire them, um, as contractors or as employees. Um, and then we'll work with them to like get set up and like make sure that they're good. And then that person will go and run the account, make content for the business. Um, manage it, community manage. and we'll continue to just kind of build on that.

So, we'll now we're kind of starting to do where we'll find a creative director that will help with ideas for that company too. Sometimes we'll do a little social media manager. We'll help with just the posting, but they're not actually filming as much. So all things content, um, within companies.

Greg: okay, so I run in, I run multiple agencies and As someone who runs agencies. Every agency owner asks themselves, should I be building product constantly? Right. So in your case, should you be creating a CPG brand? Like if you are able to build a lot of attention on social, the only missing piece that you have is what is the product and.

The operational arm to it. Right? Like the actual, like manufacturing fulfillment. Like ask the midday square guys how hard it is to do that. They built a factory. But, you know, does that interest you at all,


JT: I will do that. Um, the long-term plan for me will be to build my audience as a creator. To the point where I feel like it has the leverage to launch a product through it. And the product that I will launch through it will be purely based off of the community and their needs and the things that they feel like need to be innovated.

So if my audience continues to be creators or people in the creative world that are business minded that are trying to get into content and they're like, we hate our tripods, or we hate our, you know, ring lights. And I have an audience that's a big enough size and I feel like the, the market needs to be disrupted.

I will go into research and development and build a product to fit that need, and then that's what I'll launch through my audience. I don't feel compelled to do that yet, cuz one, I think you need to have a bigger audience than I have. And I'm not saying that I have a small one, but I just think you need multiple hundreds of thousands on multiple platforms to really have that be immediate.

Distribution to make a dent. So I'm seeing this with a lot of creators that I know personally and just the way that they're launching products and doing it well, I think you need, I think you need a sizable number. So I'm building towards that. And then when I get there, uh, I'll launch products through it.

And the agency arm that we have right now of all content and stuff will not transition into working for that brand, but it will really help. It will be the thing that kind of like power.

Greg: What are some creators like personal creators, not bows like people that are the future, Mr. Beast or Emma Chamberlains of the world that you're like, whoa, you know, let me keep a tab on that creator cuz like they're gonna be doing big things.

JT: The future Mr. Beast, I think is, really hard cuz Mr. Beast is more of an anomaly than people think. so many creators and so many business folk think that there will be more Mr. Beast, and that the next kid coming up is gonna be the next Mr. Beast. Mr.

Beast is, literally an anomaly. The amount of work that he puts in what he's built, what he's been able to achieve, and the timing that he's been able to do it. Um, have all created a perfect storm for him. the next sizable person, like Mr. Beast won't be in the style of him at all.

It'll be completely different. Cause he's created a whole wave of this fast cut, attention span kind of era that I think now there's so many smaller creators that are trying to replicate it that I think it will. Burn it out. And I think the next style will be something completely different, um, that somebody will build through.

So there, I don't think there will be another Mr. Beast of his size. Plus the business that he has behind it, with the team that he has is a bunch of savages. They're incredible at what they do. and so I, I just think that he's an anomaly. So people that I think Individuals should look at.

I really think that female lifestyle influencers and creators will build enormous businesses because women support each other more than men do. Women buy into other women's content way more than men buy into other men's content. In women lifestyle creator. Show a lot more than business people do.

So inherently the relationship that they have with their audience is deeper. If you pair a lifestyle creator in the, in a female niche with a business minded individual that wants to come in and help them really build, I think we will see a lot of companies come through that that will do damage.

And I'll give you an example of one that's doing that right now. It's Bloom, nutrition, bloom, supple. Um, with Mari Luellen, I think her last name is, um, Mari has built a big audience, then built a supplement company around greens that helped her throughout her journey of health and wellness. now they are in Walmart disrupting the whole category in Walmart, nationwide, and it's all done through her own personal account.

And through them building a community around her and her life. My fiance's another good example. She's done a great job of building, she launched her own fitness platform.

They're bawling, they're doing really, really well. I have, I am not part of that at all, so I can't take any credit, but she just documents, she shows her.

Greg: I have a quick story about that actually. So right before I. clicked record on this. My girlfriend asked me, Hey, who are you interviewing for the pod? And then I said, your name, and then she goes, oh, I've seen that guy because I'm a subscriber to the, to your wife's platform.

JT: That's awesome. Tell her thank you. yeah, it's been, I mean, I'm proud. I'm really proud of her. It's been really cool to see her build. she does a fantastic job of cultivating community in that same realm of just like putting in repetitions and it not being an overnight thing. Like she's been doing this for probably six years now, seven years now.

Greg: And she was creating content, like she wasn't selling anything for a


time. Right.

JT: Well, she first was, she was creating content on Instagram, then on YouTube, and then she was on a platform called, fit Plan. So she was a trainer on Fit Plan, and then she realized, wait a minute, I would like to actually start my own thing. So then she started her own thing and now it's doing well, and now they're branching into different, um, realms of actual tangible goods rather than just, uh, uh, an app. But they're doing a good job. And they, and that's an example of like a, another female that I think has built community and then leveraged that to build products through. So I, I think that we'll see a lot more people in that world rather than the anomalies of somebody like a Mr. Beast,

Greg: But when you say like, lifestyle, female lifestyle, like what does that really mean? Right? Like don't you have to niche down a little bit?

JT: lifestyle is a niche. People follow people. Literally, just to see what their morning routine looks like and what they do during their day and what they're eating and what the, the stuff that is mundane to you and I is interesting to some people somewhere.

So to get more particular, when I say lifestyle, what I mean directly is probably a little more health and wellness. Skewing health and wellness. Creators, individuals, bloggers, YouTubers, whatever. Um, and the reason why I think that they do a good job is because typically most health and wellness creators have struggled with something in their life that has led them to this journey of health and wellness.

And they share that. And so the audience buys into that, and then the audience goes on the journey with them. which is the same formula that I think businesses should follow. Most people start with building their company because some shit happened to them, or a friend of theirs or their kit, or they saw something, they start with a pain point, they realize something needs to change, and they go and they take action.

And then they get to that point where they're, they're making change on that. That's the kind of things that I think people should really be talking about and documenting the same way these health and. Creators do because that's what gets people to actually buy into the mission and wanna support it.

Greg: if you, you start with the mission, you be consistent about content, you find your own voice in terms of the type of content that, you know, you create. You use this, arc narrative that you talked about earlier, and then you just show up every day.

You know, I, I like to say, obviously, you know Gary Vayner truck, his jab, jab hook model. I'm kind of like, I believe in the jab, jab, jab, jab, jab, jab

jab model. You know, you just keep jabbing and giving value, um, and give value, give value, give value all around this mission, and lifestyle. And if you keep doing that, Over time, you're gonna understand a lot of these pain points.

Then you'll be able to build stuff for those pain points.

JT: Fully agree. I, I think it's continuing to just give and then ask and then ask, which I think is actually Gary's, which is actually, I think the end of his thing is rather than give, give, give, take, I think it's ask,


Greg: just going back to Mr. Beast, I had a friend of mine send me something really interesting. I'm curious your perspective on, he said that he had analyzed the top 1000 best performing Mr. Beast tos across the platform every month, and found that 15 months ago, the average length of these videos was 28.

It is now 40 seconds. A 43% increase it feels a lot like 2017 YouTube when the YouTube algorithm started pushing videos with higher, a V D average video duration. Do people want longer content

JT: yes, for sure. Yes, Uh, but longer meaning what? Like I do, I think that people just wanna sit for 35, 40 minutes. No. what I think people really are craving right now is, Content that doesn't make them have a huge spike in their dopamine and be like an addicting every three seconds they're seeing something new that's popping up.

that's why I think that the videos are going a little bit longer now because people are keeping in more pauses and more ums and less like the formula for the past while has been cut out. Everything that isn't fast. Add in noise, add in, text so that your eyes are going and following it all over and you're never able to click away. I think that us as consumers will crave more, I don't even wanna say stillness, but just more slower paced content. Um, and so that would be my take on that. I don't think that Jimmy and their team is making content longer just for the sake of making it longer. I think it's probably the videos that they're doing now are probably needing and requiring that length for them to make a cut.

Um, rather than it being a shorter one with just the videos that they're doing now.

Greg: Let's keep going. Um, If you're a creator you want to do, if you want to do shortform, like what's your creator stack like? Is there, in terms of like what tools do you use, uh, when you're working with brands, besides the obvious TikTok, Instagram,

JT: Yeah. That, but that's just the distribution to, on the actual backend, um, the ideas start in my notes and I'm just writing things that pop in my head all day. Then they go from my notes to Notion, which is where we have everything that's actually stored and, and housed. So then they actually get formulated a little bit deeper in notion with the team.

And then once they're in Notion, um, which is where the script will come from, I'll usually either film that script looking into the camera or I will voice over or voice note, um, that script in my Voice Memos app on my phone. That gets uploaded to the cloud. Uh, this is iCloud Drive. So me and my, this is actually something I haven't shared with anybody.

This is actually like, this is some shit that I think people need to think more of. Um, rather than using a Google Drive or Dropbox or anything like that, me and my video team have a shared iCloud. So on your actual iPhone when you're filming, you can. Rather than uploading it anywhere, you can save to files, which you can have a collaborative folder in.

So when I film a video, I save it to there, that goes immediately onto my editor's computer. So as soon as I'm done, I text him that it's in that folder, you can even send a link. and then he gets to work on it. So I go, I have voice notes. if I'm actually editing the video myself, I'm doing it in cap.

So I have cap cut on my phone. I have cap cut on my computer. That's the platform that I edit most of my content in. My editor is using Final Cut or Adobe Premier. Um, I'm not a computer guy. I do literally 100% of my edits are from my phone. So anything you've ever seen that from me hasn't been done on a phone.

and then if I'm writing anything out, like for LinkedIn, it's using later. That's the tech platform that I'm using for that. It's. and then I distribute. So that's usually what I do. I film everything on my camera. I don't film on TikTok. I don't film on cap cut for the most part.

It's all filmed on my camera. Brought into these platforms, edited, voiceover, compiled together, and then uploaded.

Greg: And how long does it usually take from beginning to end to create a video?

JT: Really depends on the video. Like if you look at a lot of my tos, a lot of my TOS is literally just me talking to the camera. Those take the amount of time for me to say the words and then auto caption them. So those, some of them legitimately take me 15 to 17 minutes total

Greg: And do you,

write, but do


but do

JT: Most know, most of them know most of the ones on TikTok because it's just a very off the cuff not needing to be kind of formed as much. Uh, Those are literally just thought comes to me. I say it done. So those ones can take, you know, let's say 30 minutes on average. The ones that you're singing now that are very story and more produced, where there's multiple clips over top of it, visuals, text, all of that.

Right now, I would say the average is about two hours for one of those videos. That's from me to do the voiceover. Then to find the, be the thing that takes the most time is finding the visual.

I can do the voiceover pretty quickly. That takes me about 15, 20 minutes. But going and finding visuals will be the challenge that most people come across.

So we've built, actually, we've built out a whole library now of B-roll. So all footage of me doing everyday activities to put over top of these clips so that I don't have to go and refilm them every day. And I can pull from them, um, and reuse them in little mundane moments of our, of our content. But that usually was what takes the longest time.

And then I would say the, the rest of it comes a little bit quicker. Probably about two and a half hours, two hours is the length that it's taking for one of those.

Greg: Do you ever use any insights tools? Like, I use VI iq. I'm an investor in VI iq, but it, I still use it. It's,

JT: I like Vi iq.

Greg: yeah.

JT: Uh, I, I don't. I don't,

Greg: You can

tell me if you

JT: uh, yeah, yeah. yeah. No, no, no. I do like vi we used, we worked with VI iq. That was another brand we found a creator for.

Greg: Okay. Cool.

JT: so I, I like VI iq. Um, I'm a fan for anything that shows you deeper insights. I don't, I don't value metrics, um, like, like real deep metrics as heavily as I value my own intuition.

So I look at the content and see. Rather than looking at the number and being like, oh, they dropped off at 30 seconds. I need to change that. I look at it and I'm like, do I feel like genuinely my audience is, is feeling this video as a whole? Do I feel like the intro or this, so I don't look at analytics as deeply and, and, and look at it as truth.

I get, I look at it as like it gives me a little bit more info later. That platform that I was just telling you about gives you analytics on the back end of it. So we'll look at that for LinkedIn. We'll look at that for some Instagram stuff. I'll look at my Instagram. I'll look at LinkedIn's giving you better analytics now, natively on the platform.

So I'll look at those. Um, TikTok, same thing, but I, I, I can feel it in my body honestly. I feel it when I know if things are hitting, based off of comments and the way that I feel when I'm putting out the video. I can feel when it's like, oh, we're in a, we're in a, a rhythm. and on the flip side of that, I can feel when it's not and I'm like, we're putting out content right now, but it's not really working. So, yeah, I base it off of that more.

Greg: I am the same way. I feel like. I probably like, I, if you were to ask me exactly like, what's the breakdown of this podcast and, you know, in terms of like, demographics, you know, I, I probably wouldn't be able to tell you, but when people are like, tweeting at me and I love this episode and you know, then I really like, I feel like I've done a good job.


JT: the numbers for me, Don't equate to us loving a video like on my team, if we have a video that has a million views and it really, really, really popped off. I'm not looking at that and being like, we need to do every video like this. Because again, in that same thing, like I want it to affect the core people that I want to be in my community, not necessarily just reach millions and millions of people.

So what I look for more is like how did we feel with this video when we put it up? And do the people that are replying to us that we're hearing from, that we're getting feedback from are they the people that we care about getting that feedback from? And if I get feedback from my actual core demo, Then I'm like, oh shit, this was impactful.

If I'm getting feedback from somebody that's like, yo, I saw your video, and it's like, you're not the person that I necessarily am looking at as being somebody that's a consumer, I'm like, cool, that's awesome that it reached you, but that doesn't change. That's not like changing the way that we're going into execution.

Greg: I want to end, uh, I want to end on, on this your, your four favorite creators. Who are they and why?

JT: Ooh,


JT: I really think a good example that people need to look at is Tim C. Tim to you. Sano is a dude that does, uh, everyday kind of Casey, nice sta style of logs on TikTok, um, and has built a big community through that and is just a hell of a dude. The next one I would say, Uh, Danielson with his family, s e o n g, life, l i f e c, Yong Life. It's literally him, his wife and their kids in Irvine, California. Just showing things that they do in their life and giving out tips about how they parent and what they do for their days and stuff like that.

Um, I gravitate more towards feel good content like those than like heavy hit. Mr. B style content that's like really entertaining and engaging in like fast-paced. I gravitate more towards the content that I watch and I, it makes me feel like the way I wanna feel in my day, uh, or makes me feel like a better person.

YouTube. I really like Colin and Samir. I think that they're great at what they do. I pull a lot of my own inspiration from their, kind of educational, informational style of making information tangible and digestible and cool. Um, and they're both really good dudes too. In terms of like mass, mass, mass, viral. Somebody that I think will build big as well will be Ryan Trahan, um, who's another dude that's signed to the same management team as Mr. Beast. And I think he's got chops. I think he's got a real personality that people should look into.

Um, but dude, ma honestly, majority of the content creators that I really like and that I kick it with are. And I, and I have like real niche communities. Matt Choy a runner in Austin that has this huge running community now. just by showing himself hating, running and getting into running. And I'm in that same process.

I hate running right now. He's making me want to get into it more.

Greg: But that's relatable. That's a, going back to like, that's a mission relatable mission.

JT: Yes, exactly. So, yeah, uh, I follow those kind of people that like, just make me feel good, that make me in a world, in a world of content that wants you to just be addicted to your phone.

I spend the most time intentionally following people that I feel like add value to my day. and so yeah, those are some of the people that I like.

Greg: Someone should build like a, a product hunt for this, like, for feel good, uh, up and coming creators, who are doing cool things and building businesses on top of. on top of them so that you can get involved.

JT: fully agree. and I really think people as a should go and consume midday squares because in terms of creating authentic, engaging, inspiring content, I think that they, they are actually very legitimate creators, their whole team.

Um, so they, even as a fan, I consume their content and I'm just like, this is compelling.

Greg: Yeah, I just bought some at Whole Foods the other day, so they're at Whole Foods, uh, here in North America and it's worth it to try a lot of these projects. Just because you'll understand a little more what this whole world means and how you can get involved. I'm just like, I have a budget

JT: a budget

Greg: just

JT: testing.

Greg: testing.

JT: It's why I like Expo West so much because it really is like, uh, it's just a testing ground for all of the who's who in c p G.

New things, things that are popping, things that are currently relevant. I have a field day going and just checking those. And I think people can literally go to Whole Foods and just pull 50 products that they enjoy, go home, and it's like a, a Halloween sampling of candy, of just trying new things.

Um, and that's something that we do often.

Greg: I've never been to Expo West. What was the coolest thing that you saw there? This.

JT: Um, the coolest thing for me was seeing friends that I know that I've gone from literally an idea in. Garage to actually having a booth there and it being like fully done and looking nice and people coming up to them and supporting. That was the coolest thing that I got to experience in terms of people that I think were really innovative there, that had nice booths that I think were or cool booths, cool ideas, uh, I think goods or oodles the, they're like better for. Gluten-free. I think it's gluten free macaroni and cheese that I, I think is gal gats, uh, company or as a part of it, they had a really good setup. They did a good job, trough. I like trough a lot, which is the hot sauce company. crushed a,

Greg: right.

JT: uh, with truffle in it, poppy, which is, which I have to give credit to.

Their booth was probably the most, appealing. It was literally like a, just like a full retail shop, uh, in the middle of expo. So they did a really good job with it. and I just, I, I just look at things that catch my eye that are like, why are people congregating here? Or why is, why does this look so much different than others?

so yeah, those are some of the ones that I.

Greg: So, Like you mentioned three or four products there, like what, what was it about them, these products that caught your eye besides like a nicely designed booth?

JT: Well, I think things that stand out. Uh, so the way that I, the way that I judge is like I see a wall of companies 50 booths, and I see what ones catch my eyes. So sometimes that's bright colors and unique branding. Sometimes that's the opposite because everything is bright colors and unique branding, and there's one that's like black and liquid death looking like.

So I look at what stands out br uh, branding wise first. Then the second thing after that that I need to do is, Test the product. I need to actually like try the product and see if it's something that's good that I would enjoy. If I enjoy the product. Now I'm like, okay, cool. This is something that's legit.

How's the team? Who are the people that are involved with this? Who's the people that's driving this forward? What's the founder like? Who are the other people on their team? And then for me particularly, I'm like, are they prioritizing content? What kind of content are they making? If they're doing that, then I feel even better about it.

And then the last thing for me would be like, where are they sold and how much are they sold? Like, is it attainable? Is it, uh, is the price point fair? Are they, so are they already in big stores? Are they trying to get into big stores? Are they crushing it direct to consumer? Uh, are they nationwide already?

Like where are they? Those are kind of the four things that I look at. Um, if you pass those four things for me, I would bet on you.

Greg: I love it. Jt, where could, uh, people find you on the.

JT: Uh, everything's just JT Barnett at JT Barnett. Please send me a message.

Greg: you know, you gotta see, you gotta see jts uh sunglasses on YouTube. So get off Spotify, get off Apple Podcasts and. Subscribe to the YouTube channel at where it happens. Do it right now. and, uh, we'll see you soon, JT.