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Targeted Target Audience

A few months back now I entered in a competition for up-and-coming YouTubers who target foreign audiences in Japan. Along with ten others, I was selected out of a pool of more than 250 to attend a two-hour lecture by fellow Kiwi YouTuber InternationallyMe, and we were tasked with making a video for her to then provide constructive criticism on.

We were given a small budget, and I used it to stay at Ochinomizu Tsutaya, a Ryokan, traditional Japanese Inn, in the Shizu Onsen area of Mt. Gassan. Tsutaya is run by a yamabushi friend of mine, and I thought it would be a good chance to not only introduce the area, but also the people that live there, and Shida-san of Tsutaya is one of my favourite yamabushi.

The video should be out either today or tomorrow, so I hope you are able to enjoy it, but it was a completely different style of video that I’m used to. First, as I mentioned yesterday, it involves an extensive interview. I hope I did Shida-san and Tsutaya justice by adding my own comments and explanations, and I hope that people get to learn the type of person that lives here in Yamagata.

Not only that, but since this video was made as a part of the competition, I had a very specific audience in mind when making it. It wasn’t surprising to me that it was easier to make this video because I knew exactly who it was for, but it was surprising how much easier it was for me. Don’t get me wrong. I spent a lot of time on this video, more than usual because I wanted to make it the best I could, but the concept and the flow of the story felt like it came to me much easier.

My most popular video to date, the ‘how can Japanese be Shinto and Buddhist at the same time‘ video, was made with the sentiment of making the best video I possibly could at the time. To be honest, I felt that same sentiment when I was making this video, and I feel very proud to have done that. All I need to do from now on is to have my target audience well-targeted, and to make the best possible video I can while thinking about them. Not only will I feel proud of the work I have done, I (should) will produce my best work. Now to pass this sentiment on to other aspects of my life.

Tim Bunting Kiwi Yamabushi


Hi, I’m Tim Bunting AKA the Kiwi Yamabushi, a New Zealander who became a Yamabushi Ascetic in the Dewa Sanzan mountains of north Japan. I’m part of the Yamabushido team, and we host life-altering Yamabushi training on the Dewa Sanzan (website link). People come to us for the ultimate mindfulness experience, to reach the next level, or simply connect with nature and themselves.

I’m on a mission to summit all 100 Famous Mountains of Yamagata Prefecture to spread the splendour of this fabulous location, and in dedication to all those who lost their lives out in nature, including my father.

On my daily blog I post thoughts of a practicing Yamabushi that I hope people can use to better themselves and live as fulfilling a life as possible.

Sign up to the weekly Mountains of Wisdom newsletter, follow me on social (Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, TikTok, Clubhouse, all @kiwiyamabushi), or send me an email via the link below to stay in touch.



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Sakata City, Yamagata, Japan 


All photos my own. Contact for more. 

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