Letters from Phil: A Brief History of the TubeBuddy Crew

In my last post, I talked about how these days, TubeBuddy feels a lot more like steering a cruise ship and less like a driving speed boat. In order to maintain and run a cruise ship, you need a capable crew, all working together, and that’s exactly what we have. 

I’d like to share a brief timeline of how each employee became a member of the TubeBuddy cruise line. As our employees know, I have a terrible memory but hopefully I’ll get these stories close enough to what actually happened :)

Fun fact: Before Andrew started working for us, I actually created all of the videos for our channel myself. For those of you who know how much I hate being in videos, you will know how excited I was to find Andrew. Andrew was an active member of the YTTalk forum and had a ton of nice things to say about TubeBuddy and was recommending our product over all other competitors. He had a gaming channel, film experience and a deep YouTube knowledge which I could tell would all be helpful. I randomly emailed Andrew to see if he had any interest in helping to create videos for us and luckily, he was. We hired Andrew part time to start as the first addition outside of the four TubeBuddy founders and he has been an instrumental piece of TubeBuddy’s rise and success ever since.

Katie entered our old tiny office as a bundle of enthusiasm for her interview. To be honest, it was a bit of an initial shock compared to the typical days of Eric and I programming away silently in our corners. Katie had been recommended to us by a mutual friend and soon into the interview for Director of Marketing, it was clear that she’d be a perfect fit. In addition to her marketing experience, you could tell that she would be great at nurturing the team as it grew and adding some much needed organization to our scattered workflow and procedures. Her focus on keeping the product and team true to the TubeBuddy brand has led us to where we are today and she has reduced my personal workload exponentially by stepping up to the plate and handling anything we need her help with.  

Hannah originally applied for our Marketing position but ended up taking a job with another company before we had made any decisions. Several months later she reached out to see if we were still looking and we let her know that Katie was hired but that we were now in search of a customer support specialist. Even though customer support wasn’t her ideal role, Hannah took the job in hopes of one day transitioning over to social media. Eventually she did make that transition and our social media has been taken to a new level ever since. Hannah’s experience and rise with her personal brand as an influencer shows that she knows what it takes to be successful in social media. 

I met Ike for the first time at our 2018 VidCon TubeBuddy meet up. She was the first one to show up along with Andrew, who she was already friends with. Later that year we needed to find someone to help write content for TubeBuddy and Ike applied for the role. We like to hire people who are passionate about what we do and since Ike loved writing, it was a great fit. Her hard work and dedication were very clear to us from the start and I could tell that her role would soon expand. Although she started out part time, Ike quickly grew into a full-time employee taking on more and more responsibilities including customer support, community management and setting up our chatbot. 

Being founded by 4 developers meant we were able to last several years without hiring outside developers. When the time came to find some help, we interviewed quite a few local programmers. Tammi was transitioning into programming from an analytics/marketing background and we were extremely impressed with a sample website she had built to track intermittent fasting. We could tell that although she didn’t have as much programming experience as some applicants, she would pick things up quickly and be a valuable addition to the team. But we really had no idea how fast she’d turn into a rockstar developer, churning out solid code so quickly we can barely keep up with giving her assignments. 

When we decided to hire a new developer, it ended up being clear to us that we actually needed to hire both Tammi and Ana at the same time. I still remember Ana’s colorful and nicely formatted resume. It was a stark contrast to the typical programmer resume. You could tell that she cared about design and presentation. The sample app that she made, which we had each final applicant build, was nicely styled out and user-friendly. It wasn’t until Ana designed our Buddy character that I realized what an amazing illustrator she was too. When she previewed her work, I told her “Looks amazing - let me know who created the illustrations so that I can pay the owner and ensure we won’t have legal issues.” To which she responded (in my amazement) “I created those myself”. It’s pretty much a running joke now for us to “pay the creator” of her illustrations because I can’t believe how well they are done and that someone on the TubeBuddy team created them. 

While our current mobile app does the job, we knew we could build something better. Something bigger. Something more reliable. We also knew that Jim and I couldn’t be the ones to do it. Our App is built on a framework called “Xamarin” and we needed to find someone with that particular skill. I sent some cold emails to local developers (who weren’t necessarily looking for new jobs) and convinced Jon to grab lunch and discuss the position. His easy-going attitude mixed with attention for detail seemed like the ideal fit for this role and our team. Thankfully we got John on board and he has been leading the charge on our upcoming TubeBuddy mobile app rewrite ever since. His detailed oriented approach to programming will result in an amazing new TubeBuddy mobile app (stay tuned!). 

Our team had worked with Rob several times over the years and in fact Rob stayed at one of the TubeBuddy VidCon houses in 2019. Multiple times we’d talk internally and say “I wish we had a Rob from Thinkific” on our team. When we realized that there was actually a possibility of that happening, we jumped at the opportunity. It was a no-brainer on our end and only had to figure out how soon we could get him started. Rob’s kindness and energy has since been contagious and his friendly face can now be seen in all corners of the web sporting a TubeBuddy coffee mug or shirt. We couldn’t be more excited to have someone like him as our brand evangelist representing TubeBuddy. 

Our recent search for a customer support specialist was perhaps our longest hiring process. We wanted someone local in San Diego that could visit and work at the office (unfortunately COVID had other plans). After multiple Zooms and dozens of applicants, we unanimously voted on Jasmine. Even though she hasn’t been with us long, we can already tell it was one of our best decisions yet. Jasmine has handled customer support like a champ and on top of that, has been doing QA and programming for us too. Her technical knowledge and compassion for customers has really elevated the whole support team. We hear nothing but positive feedback from our customers about their experience with our support which these days, is not an easy thing to accomplish. 

Check out a full list of our crew along with our supporting cast at https://www.tubebuddy.com/about. If you have ever been interested in working for TubeBuddy, keep your eyes peeled in the coming months… we’ll be hiring!

Happy Creating,

Comments (9) -

  • Thank you so much for taking the time and sharing. This is an amazing opportunity to get to know TubeBuddy in a different level!
  • This is great - good to see the crew!  I'm wondering if any of you are able to give some advice regarding problems with adsense I'm having?  Having real problems being able to contact anyone apart from community forums which aren't helping!
  • Can i join this community??its my pleasure to be part of this group..please

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