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Greeks Gone West: Meet YouTube strategist Matt Kovalakides

17 November 2017

Matt Kovalakides, best known as Matt Koval, has gained worldwide popularity via Youtube. He’s the creator and director of videos uploaded to his personal Youtube channel and he was recently hired to work as a strategist with the major video-sharing website. Kovalakides’s roots are in Thessaloniki. His grandparents migrated to the United States and settled in New Jersey. He graduated in film from the University of Towson and later moved to Hollywood to pursue a career in “the Industry.”

He worked as a screenwriter, director and filmmaker and decided to make his videos public via Youtube, in an effort to experiment beyond the limitations of cinema. He uploaded short comedies that earned him huge popularity. His YouTube channel has over 130,000 subscribers, and more than 1 million people have viewed his videos. In his own words... On what YouTube is looking for:

"When I started on YouTube I initially uploaded short films, where I just was behind the camera, and they didn’t really go anywhere, and I didn’t understand why all these kids on YouTube were doing so well, and I with my professional training and award-winning short films were not. What I came to realize is that they were personalizing their channel."

On how he succeeded: "I embraced YouTube and started making content, not out of my foresight as to what YouTube was going to be, but out of frustration just because I was tired with dealing with gatekeepers and people preventing me from making what I wanted to make.it was really difficult at first, get in front of the camera and talk to the lens. I felt really stupid, wondered what my family and friends were thinking. But next thing you know, comments started to roll in, people started to subscribe, and my videos were getting hundreds of thousands of views."
On what he is doing on YouTube now: "At YouTube, I’m a creative strategist or a content strategist, and the easiest way to explain it is that I’m a YouTube teacher. My job is to understand what works and why from a video perspective, series or show perspective, then teach those learnings and best practices back to the creator community."

YouTube Video: https://youtu.be/00pTG_vIP50 

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