England and Wales (South West) Region
04 May 18
'Video killed the radio star' - as the song goes - and now it looks to be dominating the world of social media. Steven Carpenter catches up with PGA Professional, Katie Rule, an online vlogger who is hoping to use YouTube to carve out a successful online career.
While the likes of Rick Shiels and Peter Finch continue to expand their YouTube following towards the 400,000 mark, one female who is at the other end of the spectrum is Rule.
The 25-year-old PGA Professional is still very early in her YouTube career having joined the party last summer, but she is hoping emulate her idols by becoming the ‘go to’ vlogger for women golfers.
“I’d contemplated the idea of setting up my own videos on social media for a while because I saw there was a market there especially for a lady professional golfer,” said Rule, who is based at Mullion Golf Club, Cornwall.
“I was inspired by what other people golfers had done on YouTube. I suddenly thought there are no females doing this and I should give it a go.”
Being camera shy was a problem Rule had to overcome early on, but her confidence grew and she soon invested in the right tools for the job.
“I bought a camera in October last year and I was making videos but I kept thinking I couldn’t do it – I didn’t have the guts.
“One day I just did it and I was surprised by the reaction, it encouraged me to keep doing it. I also bought a microphone and I had the tripod from coaching and then just went from there.”
Rules’ efforts have not gone unnoticed. She was recently approached by Golf Monthly and Foremost to conduct a filming session to encourage more women into golf.
While building her YouTube following remains a priority for Rule, she also understands the importance of being on top of other social media platforms too.
“You have to be pro-active when it comes to social media and you have to persevere.
“I realise now that you’ve got to keep posting weekly and daily if possible, just as much as you can to keep people engaged and keep them coming back.
“I’m still learning so compared to some of the bigger channels 1,000 followers is nothing but I think it’s exciting.”
Creating engaging video content is crucial to attracting more subscribers and that’s an area Rule puts a lot of thought into.
“I brainstorm the things I am passionate about and want to talk about. I then started getting ideas from each of those topics about videos I could make.
“I tend to make videos about what I do in lessons a lot. If the common question is asked in a lesson, I’ll make a video from that because you’re focussing on what people want.
“The most intimidating thing is suddenly talking in front of a camera with nobody else there. You’ve just got to talk as if you’re giving a lesson. Even if it takes a few videos first, at least you’re practicing but it can take time.
“It’s about mixing it up a bit, making it fun, not making the videos too long, keep them short and sweet and quite light-hearted.”
Just like Shiels, Finch and her south west idol Mark Crossfield, a former PGA Member with almost a quarter of a million subscribers, Rule wants to carve a career as a vlogger.
The long term plan is to keep producing regular videos for the next two to three years and then hopefully approaches from other big companies will come along.
“I absolutely love it,” Rules added. “If I could do it full-time I would because it’s become a passion.
“The dream goal is to get out there and become one of the top female vloggers and get to the top like Peter Finch and Rick Shiels.
“You do get inspired by them because they’ve managed to do it. It does seem like miles away but the goal is to really be known as someone who is passionate about golf, who loves golf and loves talking about the game.”
Check out Rule's very own YouTube channel by clicking here.