Q&A | Catching up with YouTube sensation, Tierra J. Anthony
Tierra J. Anthony is a wife, mother and content creator who has found success on YouTube by consistently showcasing her many talents and keeping it real with her viewers. By showing the imperfections of everyday life, she's creating a community and culture of her own that's rooted in humility.
Born and raised in Flint, MI and currently residing in Atlanta, GA, the mompreneur of three decided to do YouTube full-time in 2017 and has since amassed a following of 500,000+ subscribers on her beauty and lifestyle channel (Tierra J) and 76,000+ on her family channel (TT3 TV).
What makes Tierra’s videos so unique is her down-to-earth personality and warm spirit that's immediately felt when you click on any one of her videos. Whether she’s slaying hair on her beauty channel or giving us a weekly recap of mom life on TT3 TV, she does it all with a sense of pride and enthusiasm.
She also doesn’t hesitate to keep it real about entrepreneurship, motherhood and marriage which prompts much-needed discussions within her online community.
We had the pleasure of connecting with Tierra to discuss her experience growing up in Flint, her YouTube journey, how she comes up with content and much more. Keep reading to get "the goods" on Tierra J. Anthony.
TG: What was your experience like growing up in Flint?
TJA: “I could literally write a whole book because I feel like growing up in Flint was the core of my life lessons. But, to keep it short, I'll say it was humbling. I grew up with a single mother and she worked hard for me and my two sisters. The streets of Flint are rough but I'm glad I had a great mother who prayed for me and forced me to go to church every Sunday (laughs). Growing up in a "rough" city, I feel like it's easier to gravitate towards those rough things. That was definitely me. I dibbled and dabbled in the wrong things, I wanted to be "hard" so nobody would mess with me. I partied hard at a young age, I have story times for days. I was that girl whose story could've taken a turn for the worse.
Luckily, I never went too far and I have to thank my mama and the amazing people and opportunities God put in my path to help me grow in the right direction. I have to thank Flint because as much as the negativity makes the news, there's double positivity in the city. I was a part of so many programs like TeenQuest, Gear Up, Skill Center, etc. that helped me stay on the right track and prepared me for my future. There are so many amazing, creative, talented people in Flint that have inspired me, and luckily, I call so many of those people my friends. So in a nutshell, thank you Flint!”
TG: What made you want to start a YouTube channel?
TJA: “I started a Youtube channel back in the day just because. I really don't even remember what made me want to do it, I just thought it was fun. I was 13 or 14 and just made funny, random videos. I started out with the random videos, then starting singing, then hair, then vlogs! I guess it was a creative outlet for me and it just stuck over the years. I still love it!”
TG: At what point in your YouTube journey did you decide to do it full-time?
TJA: “I decided to do Youtube full-time in 2017. My husband was in the Army and just got orders to be stationed in Kansas so that means we were moving and starting a whole new life. I had just opened a salon with my sister, and I was doing Youtube part-time. With Youtube being mobile it was a no-brainer to take it on full-time. I was already seeing part-time income from my channel so I said to myself, “If I put all of my time and energy into this, I’ma kill it!””
TG: On your family channel, you're very transparent about married and family life. How has the response been from your viewers?
TJA: “Good and bad, mostly good. I have made so many positive connections with other moms, women, and families just from me opening up about life. People relate to transparency because we really all are just people. We all go through things, we all struggle with stuff. Life is not always rainbows and butterflies and I think people paint that "perfect" picture on social media. I'm not gonna lie, I did that before and I hated how it felt so I made a vow to myself to just be me online. I didn't want to have a real life and an online life. I just wanted to be me all the time, everywhere.
Because I've opened myself up as being a real person, people like that; I do too. I love transparency and realness, but of course, that brings people and their opinions. Sometimes, people have more than opinions and just don't like you for whatever reason, and sitting behind a keyboard makes it easy to express that dislike and hate. So, I have definitely had my share of seeing the good, bad and ugly. You just gotta know who you are, focus on the positive, have thick skin and honestly not care about what anyone has to say about you.”
TG: How is your process of coming up with content for your videos?
TJA: “I try to make a schedule. Now, I'm a little raggedy so it doesn't always go as scheduled (laughs) but I try! Right now, I'm trying something new like having a certain theme of content for the days I post. For example, Mondays are for my 'relaxed hair series,’ Wednesday for 'wigs and weaves,’ Fridays for my 'fun' videos like GRWM (Get Ready With Me), try-on hauls, story times, etc. That's been helping me a lot lately because doing Youtube full-time, there is no punch-in card or anybody telling you what you need to accomplish or check off your list. With any entrepreneurial field, you literally have to create it all yourself. I have to have some type of structure, otherwise, it'll be a hot mess.”
TG: Would you ever consider doing a television show?
TJA: “Absolutely! I won't wait around for a network either. I will create my own and take all my people with me! That's actually something I've been thinking a lot lately. I'm allowing God to guide my footsteps and we'll see what happens!”
TG: What advice do you have for someone who wants to start a YouTube channel but may feel like it's too late?
TJA: “As long as you wake up every day, it is never too late for anything! Your life is not over until you take that last breath.”
TG: Any shout outs?
TJA: “I would like to shout out all my people from Flint, MI doing their thing! This year, I have been missing home so much and lowkey itching to move back just to be around that hustle culture again. A lot of us didn't come from a lot and that's why you see so much heart hustle. I see the heart hustle in people like my sisters, Tianna and Teshia, braiding, branding, boutique popping, never stopping! My husband, Teress, I don't think he knows how much he’s impacted me and so many others. My baby Brandon Shavon slaying silk presses and coming out with his own products, Quavis and his personal chef business and his own freaking seasoning! Jalondria (jnicolecustom), I love her spirit, creativity and hustle and have been loving it for years.
Elle Jae Essentials skin and haircare. Ernest Mack with Nobody Big Yet, he created an entire movement that lives on in so many of us. RealityCreations with her goddess power, self-love, healing, magical herbs and love. Goodboy Clothing and media! I am a huge fan! Eight One Zero doing their thing. Bfb Da Packman, Marc Wayne, Delano, Brelia Renee, Furillostar making moves with their music! My girl Mia just opened a photography studio downtown. My girl Autumn doing her thing with her new boutique, RileyAnn. Prince Talley with WeHappy Beverages, Chris Jackson killing the game with his radio show. Avery Adams doing his thing with Bebe productions and Go Tumble. Dope makeup artists, hairstylists and nail techs like Amber, Kei'arah, Hannah Berry, Searis, too many to name!
Kyona McGhee just opened up her firm 'Trademark My Stuff' like wow! The list goes on and on! I literally love to see it! And that's only a few people I see doing their thing. If I shouted them all out, this would be a whole book (laughs). Those are people I grew up with or went to school with or just see from a distance and never even met that really inspires me and brings me back to that "heart hustle". I love y'all. And last but not least, shout out to God! I am nothing without Him. God leads and guides me, and is the driver of all things and makes all things possible. Thank you God.”
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