Marina Iakovleva

Speaker 2023

Topic: How to Create a Successful Youtube Channel/Brand with Zero Experience

Marina came to Toronto, Canada when she was twelve. In her early 20’s she started traveling, connecting with, and yes, you know it — dating people internationally.

It is through these romantic encounters, some fleeting, others serious, that her fascination with the topic began. She started blogging about her experiences and later filmed her very first video while working abroad in Latin America.

It was not a success. Nor were many of her early videos. However, she was hooked! In 2015 she left her teaching job to pursue her YouTube channel Dating Beyond Borders full time.

It took a lot of hard work, trial and error, and sleeping on her mom’s couch while renting out her apartment in order to make ends meet.

It was not an easy couple of years — with only a handful of subscribers, no film background to speak of, and no money coming in, she doubted she could turn this gig into a full-time job.

She now fully manages her channel, from casting to script writing with the help of her small team.

In the 8 years since, she has self-published a book on dating in Scandinavia called “Sex Before Coffee”, traveled the world and partnered up with Iceland Tourism (Guide to Iceland) and Audible, and has been featured in major publications such as BuzzFeed and Euronews.

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