A software engineer turned dancer and video director reinvents himself by launching TMilly.TV
When Tim Milgram moved to Los Angeles in 2010 to pursue dance and choreography, he had no idea it was his tech skills that would help him find his place in the beautiful yet cutthroat world of the performing arts.
At the time, Milgram (who studied Computer Science at UC Santa Barbara) was working remotely for a software company while taking dance classes and going to auditions as much as possible. However, his 9-to-5 job eventually began to inch toward the back-burner, allowing his passion to take precedence. “After 8 months of being in L.A. and trying to juggle the two, I realized that simply ‘liking’ what I do was not enough to sacrifice being able to pursue something I love,” says Milgram. “I was 24 at the time, and telling my parents that I was essentially throwing away my college education and career was terrifying.” Milgram was determined to prove to his parents, and himself, that he had made the right decision. He built an impressive online presence for pioneering his style of filming dance, with billions of views on his YouTube videos, and started working with major brands such as Mattel, Puma, and Zumba, as well as artists like Ciara, Justin Timberlake, and Meghan Trainor. He would eventually unite his love for tech, filmmaking, and dance to launch an innovative online venture, TMilly.TV. Today, the online learning platform has a massive community of users all over the world. It all started with the purchase of a camera. Shortly after his leap from software engineer to professional dancer, Milgram invested in a Canon 5D Mark II (little did he know he’d become a Canon Ambassador years later) and started making his own choreography videos for his newly launched YouTube channel. One of his dance teachers asked if he could film something for him. Before he knew it, Milgram was directing a whole shoot with over 20 dancers on set. Milgram wasted no time branding his skills and newfound career. “When it came time to put my name on the project, I thought it would be cool to call it ‘a TMilly Production’ instead of ‘a Tim Milgram Production,’ and ‘TMilly TV’ was born shortly after,” he says. Milgram Creative, TMilly’s parent company, is a creative agency and production house specializing in all things dance: branded content, concept videos, class videos, music videos, and more. The TMilly TV venture meanwhile features a whole archive of online dance classes for all levels. Milgram was on a mission “to provide the best platform for people looking to learn how to dance, with instructors who have worked with some of the biggest stars in the world.” Whether you need a beginner class on the classic cha-cha, or to master a contemporary fusion routine, the online destination is a one-stop shop solution to learning all the right moves from the comfort of your home. When it came time to create the website, Milgram says the .TV web domain was a natural fit. “Our brand and domain match up perfectly with www.TMilly.TV for TMilly TV. It just made sense!” “When I first launched the site I honestly didn’t know if anyone would sign up,” admits Milgram. “It’s vulnerable to put something out there that’s available for purchase for the very first time.” But it wasn’t long until he saw the website gain traction. “When I woke up the next day and started seeing our first users roll in, it was the biggest sigh of relief.” The business would garner a following, getting organic traffic from the YouTube and Instagram pages, as well as from paid ads on Facebook, Instagram, and Google. He eventually opened the TMilly Studio in Los Angeles, but the online learning website would keep the business afloat through the pandemic. “The demand for at-home training was through the roof, so the pandemic put our online business into high gear and I worked around the clock filming and releasing hundreds of classes as a result.” He adds that his team was able to turn “a bad situation into an opportunity to take our online business to the next level.” More importantly, it kept their community connected and thriving during a difficult time. Although the world of entrepreneurship is often described as stressful and chaotic, Milgram learned that building a business could be a joyful experience. “Trust the process, and have fun with it. Business doesn’t always have to be ‘business, all the time.” The software engineer turned entrepreneur has words of advice for other aspiring business owners who dream of pursuing their own creative endeavors: “Believe in yourself and in your vision. Nobody else is going to tell you what’s right for you. Only you can do that. So if you feel it in your heart, take the leap. See more of Tim’s work
https://YouTube.com/timmilgram https://Instagram.com/timmilgram https://www.TMilly.tv