YouTuber and singer Charis Ow made her first YouTube video in 2009, a cover of Marie Digby’s ‘Say It Again’. Buoyed by the supportive comments she received, she continued singing and making videos. While she was based in Vietnam then, she moved back to Malaysia in 2011, where she got to know more musicians in Malaysia and started performing more. This young, talented singer even opened for Jayesslee in 2012, and Clara C and Jason Chen the following year.
“I told myself to take the leap of faith, and just do it!”
“At some point, I realized that as much as I loved singing, I have a stronger passion for fashion and video production slash editing. So, BAM! CharisowTV was revived in 2014! It took me a while to kickstart the channel seriously, because there weren’t any prominent fashion and beauty YouTubers yet in Malaysia, whom I was aware of. I wasn’t sure whether people would support my channel as it was unconventional compared to blogging. I told myself to take the leap of faith, and just do it! Thanks, Nike!”
Charis has plenty of videos on her channel, ranging from her eating spicy Korean fire noodles, creating candy-cane inspired makeup tutorial to a no-thumb challenge where she collaborated with Cupcake Aisyah. Where did she get her ideas for her videos?
“Everywhere! However, to be more specific, I usually keep up with trends, seasons, music releases et cetera so that content would be relevant and updated.”
I’m amazed at how dedicated she is to her channel. While her videos are light and entertaining, I know for sure there’s plenty of work behind them. What did she find the hardest part about having her own YouTube channel?
“I would love to have my own team in the future.”
“I think the hardest part would be juggling everything on my own, since I’m a one-woman show! Although I do get a lot of satisfaction from seeing how an idea comes alive, I would love to have my own team in the future!”
I asked her then what was is that people did not know about content creation that they wished they knew.
“People usually do not know about the hours spent on a 5 minute video that they see.”
Being in the limelight often means trolls come by. Did she ever have to deal with negativity and haters? How did she deal?
“Yes, of course! As the saying goes, ignorance is bliss, and I have been doing just that!”
As I follow Charis on YouTube and Instagram, I feel like I know her pretty well, and I’m guessing her fanbase feels that way too. Could she tell us something about herself that we didn’t know?
“I have a secret talent. This is the first time I’m announcing it to the world…I could mimic Gollum’s voice in Lord Of The Rings. And I must say, I do it pretty well! “Myyyyy preciousssss!””
OK guys. I think we’re going to need Charis to make a video of that so we can all check it out!
Since she’s been doing this for a few years, and has amassed quite the following, what would her advice be to someone who wanted to start her own YouTube channel or blog?
“No one is perfect.”
“Keep doing what you do for your passion, not fame, money or acceptance from others. Money is important, but don’t let it be the main goal. Even though these are added bonuses, it should never be your main focus. Also, keep improving yourself. For example, I myself am still a work in progress. There are so many things I need to learn and improve on! No one is perfect!” Charis smiles.
I was curious to know how she grew her fanbase to what it is now. At the time of the interview, she had 24k subscribers on YouTube and 27.5k on Instagram. What was her secret sauce?
“Consistency and personal connection. These two aspects are very important in terms of growing an audience on YouTube, because my subscribers are very important to me because of their love and support. Therefore, making relatable content consistently that will or may add value to their lives is one of the key points in increasing my audience.”
Was there anything she knew now, that she wished she knew 5 years ago?
“I should have been more consistent at the beginning!”
Who was her favourite YouTuber and why?
“Sometimes it’s just mixing and matching and just being yourself!”
“Jenn Im from Clothes Encounters. I have been an avid follower of her channel for the longest time and I really admire how she is so consistent, juggling between her channel and school at the same time. I think what really got me hooked on her channel is that she does not really focus on branded goods – she goes thrift shopping and she makes it work! This definitely goes to show that fashion is not always about how much you spend to look like a million bucks. Sometimes it’s just mixing and matching and just being yourself! And that is what I wanted to share with the audience here in Malaysia and hopefully, connect with viewers from other countries as well.”
And lastly, if she had no constraints or limits, what would her ideal life look like?
“This probably is the most generic answer you can get – I’d wish to have financial freedom! Haha!”
I’m sure with her combo of talent, style and hard work, Charis is definitely going to achieve her financial freedom, and hopefully sooner than she thinks! For more Charis, follow her on Youtube, Facebook, Instagram or Twitter!
Subscribe to Little Slices below or follow us on Facebook for more in-depth interviews with people!