Lauren Riihimaki, aka LaurDIY has built a social media empire from her love for crafting. The 29-year-old creator has been creating YouTube videos for over a decade. At the beginning of her journey, she shared only DIY craft videos, however, her channel has evolved to show more of her personal life. Today, the YouTuber shares daily vlogs, shopping hauls, and reactions to her older videos. Her passion and dedication to her channel, with over 8.4 million subscribers, landed her a role as host and producer of HBO’s Craftopia. Here’s how the craft lover was able to do it.
How she got her start
In 2011, when Lauren was in college, she had the idea to start a blog focused on her dorm room creations. After a while, the process of writing out instructions got tedious, so she decided to start a YouTube channel to create tutorials. The Queen of Crafts used to create videos on everything from how to craft your own Halloween costumes to creative clothing hacks. Before long, Lauren built a massive following of viewers who loved DIY just as much as her. Today, the creator has shifted her focus to content that appeals to more mature adults, as she hosts “Girl Talk” videos on her channel where she answers questions about womanhood.
How she’s leveraged her YouTube channel
Lauren interviewed with Entrepreneur and shared how she’s been able to leverage her YouTube channel. The DIYer shared that many people only want to post trendy videos on YouTube to cash in a big Adsense check, however, that’s never been her goal. She said her goal has always been leveraging YouTube to build a brand. She’s used YouTube to build out her other social platforms — Instagram and Twitter. She said that posting to YouTube not only increased her ad revenue but it also increased exposure for her product lines.
Passion = profits
Lauren monetizes her YouTube channel and video editions of her podcast, Wild Til’ 9, through Adsense. Her podcast has many sponsors, such as Hello Fresh, BetterHelp, Peleton, and LiquidIV. The DIY Queen also has several brand partnerships with Google Play, Princess Polly, and Dyson.
Lauren has merchandise partnerships with various retailers, including Amazon, Walmart, Target, and Hobby Lobby. Her product line includes everything from LaurDIY-branded crafting kits and jewelry to hoodies and T-shirts. Lauren focuses on developing products that appeal to her fans and the general public.
The creator also recently got involved in angel investing with several different start-ups, including Lolli and Community.com.
Lauren was fortunate enough to land a role as host and producer of HBO’s Craftopia — a competition featuring 9 to 15-year-old crafters who use their imaginations to make inventive and amazing creations. The show did really well and wrapped its second season in 2021 before being canceled. Lauren has said that while she enjoyed the show and is so grateful for the opportunity, the show’s ending only makes room for her other endeavors.
Lauren proves that creating content you’re truly passionate about can land you opportunities you never could’ve imagined. How inspiring!