5 questions with YouTube Gaming creators BriannaPlayz and PrestonPlayz
YouTube Gaming creators BriannaPlayz and PrestonPlayz are only 26 and 27-years-old, respectively, and yet their combined total of 11 channels are flourishing on YouTube. With 35 employees and a 360-degree business that includes merch, real estate, brand deals and a new coffee shop in Dallas, they’re taking YouTube Gaming by the storm -- as a couple.
We chatted with Brianna and Preston about how they manage to do it all, while also taking care of themselves.
Read on and learn more about how they manage their businesses on and off YouTube, together as a married couple, and how they treat their businesses, employees and each other with care.
This interview has been edited for length and clarity.
Having numerous channels helps me to focus on each passion of mine, individually, and create a unique audience for each type of content.”
Preston, you have 7 channels! And Brianna, you have 4 channels! What prompted you both to create multiple channels, and how do you juggle all of them?
Brianna: I have a large variety of interests -- from gaming to "real life" vlog-style content. Having numerous channels helps me to focus on each passion of mine, individually, and create a unique audience for each type of content. Initially, when I started my YouTube channel, it was only gaming content. We formalized an action plan to help me create the vlog-style content that I had a passion for, along with the continuation of gaming. We typically focus at the beginning of the week on our gaming videos. This helps us to devote all of our energy to that specific style. The end of the week tends to be when we film our larger-scale vlogging videos. Each viewer has their own particular interests. Dividing my content into separate channels helps the audience find what they're excited to watch easier.
Preston: I created multiple channels to prevent creator burn-out, audience “churning” and to grow new streams of viewers simultaneously. The biggest challenge when having multiple channels is scaling and growing a team. Training a team and delegating post-production, graphics and even creative allows us to accomplish so much content -- it’s crazy. In fact, we’re posting over 20 pieces of content weekly between myself and Brianna.
During the pandemic, you pivoted your content strategy and did your best to keep your staff employed! How did experimenting and shifting to your more personal channel (doing more IRL content) work out for your business?
Preston: We saw a massive increase in viewership from the pandemic (as did most of the platform with everyone being at home). We tripled our merchandise orders and opened several new gaming channels for myself and Brianna. During the pandemic we sought to provide more jobs, growing from 25 to 35 employees. We wanted to be on the forefront of content creation whether that was at home or once Texas re-opened.
Finding balance and taking care of your wellbeing is an important practice within any career, including being a YouTube Creator -- and even more importantly as a husband and wife in the same business. Talk to us about how you both find balance, take care of each other and manage your wellbeing. Any best practices or tips that you can share with fellow creators?
Brianna: I am often asked if it is hard to work with my spouse, and for me, it is the complete opposite. I find that getting to work alongside my husband is a huge blessing. We constantly push each other to do our very best and encourage each other every step of the way. Sometimes, it is hard to stop and take time for yourself because of our busy careers. However, if I can at least take one day a week for self-care, I have even more energy to take on the week. It is so important to spend quality time with those you love as well as yourself. Preston and I do a great job at taking time for us to do special things together, whether it be simply playing video games to wind down when we finish a busy day of work, going on a walk, or even to a fancy dinner. Even though our lives are hectic, we always do our best to make time for each other. Yes, we do work together. However, having those quality moments not involving work is very important. I live by the saying, "I am third," which means that I strive to always put God and others before myself. For me, this advice transfers into the workplace. Remember to take care of yourself and others first, because if you don't, you won't be able to pour 100% into your work.
Preston: Walking in faith and gratitude helps keep us grounded and together throughout each week. We’re strict about our Saturdays being our one day off (this means no talking about, thinking about or doing actual work). It doesn’t have to be Saturday -- just one day off! If other YouTubers could adopt this practice, I think they would find their content that much more fulfilling.
We’ve seen many videos where you both collaborate with each other. What inspires you to create video content together? What was the last video you both recorded and uploaded together?
Brianna: Getting to collaborate with my husband, Preston, allows us to show others the power of a happy and healthy relationship. One of my favorite video series that I do on my channel is getting to go on unique date nights and surprising Preston with fun and exciting things. It truly is a blast to get to work with my spouse, and I feel like our on-camera chemistry is obvious and comes naturally. Being a married couple on YouTube gives us an exciting and unique type of content that we can excel at. In the last video we filmed together on my channel, I surprised Preston with 24 gifts in 24 hours. I don't do videos like that for the material aspect. I love getting to show thoughtfulness to my spouse and to show that as an example to others. Making my spouse smile and have fun during a video is a true blessing.
Preston: I’ve been on the platform for over a decade, and naturally, I saw the rise of couples channels and always thought to myself, “Man, that would be my dream to one day create content with my soul mate!” And sure enough it happened! We film roughly 20 videos weekly (only 5 or so together) and the last one that pops in my head was a couples challenge vs. Matt and Rebecca Zamolo.
Take it from me, who took a massive leap of faith to begin my YouTube career. I wouldn't change anything. All it took was a leap of faith.”
What advice would you give to those who want to start a career on YouTube?
Brianna: If you have a passion for creating a channel, I say that you should go for it! Make sure that you enjoy the type of content that you want to produce because it will be something you will do on a daily/weekly basis. Do not let money hold you back. You do not need a fancy gaming computer setup or expensive lighting equipment to be successful. There are plenty of wonderful YouTube creators who film on their mobile phones and laptops! Stay grounded -- because no matter what you do -- as long as you stay true to yourself and love what you do, that will shine through to those watching.
Take it from me, who took a massive leap of faith to begin my YouTube career. I wouldn't change anything. All it took was a leap of faith.