Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

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Karl_Joseph
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Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by Karl_Joseph »

I have a new chart topper w/ a proper self produced video soon to release on YouTube. In the past I’ve titled my vidz with the gear I’ve used and got (relatively) lots of views depending on the gear I’ve used and what’s “trendy”

I don’t want to do that anymore (and haven’t been the last couple of vidz I’ve put out) because I want my “art” to stand on its own and not based on trending “product visibility”. The problem is the videos that I don’t mention gear usage doesn’t get the same exposure.

I’m doing this at the expense of my views and expanding my “brand” I feel dirty saying it but I don’t think it’s as dirty as gear reviews and trying to make money on YouTube by shilling for gear manufacturers by being a synthfluencer - where is the art in that?

I don’t want to be a synthfluencer. It’s tacky. Gear reviews make me cringe. I consider myself an artist and a producer and I want to distance myself from cringy corners of the synthfluencer dark web.

I’m not looking for any tips or tricks per say- I just wanted to get this off my chest and feel the MW production was the best place for this as my “art” is AV production related leaning heavily on the synthesizers and MW has been my forum home longer than any other site.

I’m curious to hear others thoughts on the synthfluencer scene and it’s impact on electronic music.
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tony d
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by tony d »

I don’t like the trend personally but like you said people watch stuff because they are interested in the gear. It’s kind of a shame because there’s artists that I like but I won’t watch their videos anymore because I see them heavily leaning into the “ let me show you my cool gear” angle.

If you post your channel I’d love to check it out. I definitely have respect for you for making that choice as I know it’s a selfless decision.
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by JES »

That’s one of the problems with YouTube. Apart from subscription, the business model is advertising. I don’t blame people for mentioning gear. I don’t blame people for making a living demoing gear. But ultimately, I’m into the music for the music.

That said, you should at least put a link to your music in your sig file. That’s legit promotion and it’s nice to hear work from people who I’m reading.
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tony d
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by tony d »

Also, thanks for bringing this up. I am really interested to hear peoples thoughts as well. Hopefully people that see it as a positive contribution can help me get a different perspective.
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by Karl_Joseph »

tony d wrote: Sun May 08, 2022 4:34 pm I don’t like the trend personally but like you said people watch stuff because they are interested in the gear. It’s kind of a shame because there’s artists that I like but I won’t watch their videos anymore because I see them heavily leaning into the “ let me show you my cool gear” angle.

If you post your channel I’d love to check it out. I definitely have respect for you for making that choice as I know it’s a selfless decision.
Here is my latest:



You can check out some of my earlier videos mentioning gear and how much more visibility and plays they've gotten.

I should also clarify there are still a few review channels I still respect like SonicState and Loopop but many of the others just shill so hard. I respect people for the hustle but I wish it wasn't so "marketing".
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by thelowerrhythm »

Maybe this falls into tips and tricks, but I've found a nice happy place by just tagging my stuff with all sorts of trending crap that has nothing to do with it. The hits are meaningless, but they make me giggle.
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by Karl_Joseph »

JES wrote: Sun May 08, 2022 4:39 pm That’s one of the problems with YouTube. Apart from subscription, the business model is advertising. I don’t blame people for mentioning gear. I don’t blame people for making a living demoing gear. But ultimately, I’m into the music for the music.

That said, you should at least put a link to your music in your sig file. That’s legit promotion and it’s nice to hear work from people who I’m reading.
Totally going to put a link in my sig! Thanks for the suggestion! I think I'm going to start streaming live too... even though I more of a producer than a performer, in my younger days I did enjoy gigging a little bit and that seems like the best way to do it without lugging a bunch of gear around and risking damage or theft.
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by Sleepfc »

Just popped to mention how much I loathe the synthfluencer thing. Bobeats makes some of the worst music. These dudes have fat studios and excessive amounts of equipment but for what? YouTube? Cool… Lol and don’t even get me started on Andrew Huang. Just terrible

One thing that really stood out for me lately is this Syntakt release, and how regularly scheduled synth reviews were ready to go as soon as the product dropped. All the folks who got early access to a syntakt had plenty of time to make something cool with it but none of them did the synth any justice. I won’t say the syntakt is terrible machine, but synthfluencers are just trash musicians
Last edited by Sleepfc on Mon May 09, 2022 11:17 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by DOTSmusic »

I get what you're saying, it certainly can feel dirty, but these are the times we're living in. Sometimes it's better to just swallow your pride and play the game, especially if you're still building an audience. I mean, I've been doing this music shit for a very long time and I don't play the game at all, but I also realize that's why my audience is marginal at best.

Having said that, I really love gear reviews and demo's showing off the features and capabilities of a piece of gear, new or old. I'm mostly indifferent to the people making the vids, and sad to say, the one thing that I typically don't care about is the music being made on the devices in these review and demo videos. I can't even think of one of review/demo/jam video in which I actually liked the music. But, that's just a personal taste thing.
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by Karl_Joseph »

Sleepfc wrote: Mon May 09, 2022 11:00 am Just popped to mention how much I loathe the synthfluencer thing. Bobeats makes some of the worst music. These dudes have fat studios and excessive amounts of equipment but for what? YouTube? Cool… Lol and don’t even get me started on Andrew Huang. Just terrible

One thing that really stood out for me lately is this Syntakt release, and how regularly scheduled synth reviews were ready to go as soon as the product dropped. All the folks who got early access to a syntakt had plenty of time to make something cool with it but they all did none of them did the synth any justice. I won’t say the syntakt is terrible, but synthfluencers are just trash musicians
I feel the exact same way. Andrew Huang - I respect the guy's hustle, but sometimes I can perceive the defeat in his eyes when he's doing a gear review. Dude should just stick to what makes him happy and not shill so hard for manufacturers.

I liked the Basseck/perfect circuit Syntakt video - he seemed to actually enjoy playing it, but yeah, most of the tunes made on it by synthfluencers are just crap... thats not to say I'm making solid gold hits with my gear either, but I'm done trying to shill gear as a marketing tactic for my tunes. The only reason I started making videos was for preservation or proof of my efforts as a musician... and possibly become world famous rock star!
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by pugix »

I noticed that my youtube videos that are about specific Eurorack modules get the most views. But I'm not trying to build a brand for myself. My reason for having a youtube channel is just to have a place for videos I can link from my blog site, pugix.com. I always put a link back to my blog in the video descriptions. That's where I want people to go.
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by Karl_Joseph »

pugix wrote: Mon May 09, 2022 11:16 am I noticed that my youtube videos that are about specific Eurorack modules get the most views. But I'm not trying to build a brand for myself. My reason for having a youtube channel is just to have a place for videos I can link from my blog site, pugix.com. I always put a link back to my blog in the video descriptions. That's where I want people to go.
Yup, my vidz with the most hits are eurorack related. My guess is you can't really try the modules before you buy so you go to youtube to see what they sound like and how they operate. Youtube is great for that.
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by Lux A Turner »

When I was putting my rack together on Modulargrid. I listened to a lot of tracks featuring the modules I was interested in, simply because I want to see / hear what other people were doing with them, outside of a demo environment.

Maybe that's why videos which mention specific modules get more views - because research.


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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by tony d »

Lux A Turner wrote: Mon May 09, 2022 11:45 am Maybe that's why videos which mention specific modules get more views - because research.
That makes sense for sure.
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by tony d »

Karl_Joseph wrote: Mon May 09, 2022 10:29 am
tony d wrote: Sun May 08, 2022 4:34 pm I don’t like the trend personally but like you said people watch stuff because they are interested in the gear. It’s kind of a shame because there’s artists that I like but I won’t watch their videos anymore because I see them heavily leaning into the “ let me show you my cool gear” angle.

If you post your channel I’d love to check it out. I definitely have respect for you for making that choice as I know it’s a selfless decision.
Here is my latest:



You can check out some of my earlier videos mentioning gear and how much more visibility and plays they've gotten.

I should also clarify there are still a few review channels I still respect like SonicState and Loopop but many of the others just shill so hard. I respect people for the hustle but I wish it wasn't so "marketing".

Thanks for sharing man!
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by Orange »

Karl_Joseph wrote: Sun May 08, 2022 11:53 am I have a new chart topper w/ a proper self produced video soon to release on YouTube.
Congrats!
Karl_Joseph wrote: Sun May 08, 2022 11:53 am
I don’t want to do that anymore (and haven’t been the last couple of vidz I’ve put out) because I want my “art” to stand on its own and not based on trending “product visibility”. The problem is the videos that I don’t mention gear usage doesn’t get the same exposure.

………….

I’m curious to hear others thoughts on the synthfluencer scene and it’s impact on electronic music.
What if people come for the gear, but stay because of the music? :tu:
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by Karl_Joseph »

What if people come for the gear, but stay because of the music? :tu:

For sure! There’s been a few synthfluencers who’ve gotten my subscribe cause they have cool tracks - red means recording, cuckoo (not my cup of tea but I appreciate the originality of his music and calming demeanor), and even Andrew Huang has some (not all) pretty cool tunes if you can get past the marketing.
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by ZatsuOn »

I actually really like module/gear reviews -- as long as they are actually informative. I'm not so crazy about the "here's a jam with X module" that's presented as a review, since those are hardly ever just the module in question. What I am after is an understanding of what that particular module can do, not how well they can put together a downstream effects chain or make a cool backing beat. Learning what folks with a lot more experience than me think of a new module is both useful and entertaining for me, and I don't care so much if the tune is the epitome of art or not.

On the other hand, if mentioning the gear gets you more hits for your music then why not? As long as you are not blatantly advertising the gear, or taking sponsorship from the maker without saying so, it seems fine. I can understand you'd rather have the music alone drive the traffic, but "Come for the gear, stay for the music" seems a reasonable way to drive traffic and subscriptions.

I don't agree with the posts above that say "so-and-so's gear demo music is crap" for two reasons: 1) in gear reviews or tutorials it's less about the track and more about showing what the module does and how it does it, and 2) the range of what is "crap" vs "art" is super-subjective -- especially here in synth-land. There are folks on the forum who revel in making sounds reminiscent of sandpaper on concrete or glass breaking underwater. I personally have a little trouble thinking of that as music, but it can be very cool nonetheless. If you don't like it, just don't watch it.
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by Ashley Pomeroy »

Karl_Joseph wrote: Sun May 08, 2022 11:53 amI don’t want to do that anymore (and haven’t been the last couple of vidz I’ve put out) because I want my “art” to stand on its own and not based on trending “product visibility”. The problem is the videos that I don’t mention gear usage doesn’t get the same exposure.
I apologise for calling you Shirley, but surely you're now in the same position as any other aspiring pop star. Once you ditch the synth-geek part of your internet persona you're in the same position as e.g. Aldous Harding, Igorrr, Wet Leg etc. And before them The Specials, The Clash etc. Your videos aren't getting views because you aren't promoting them.

You now aspire to being a legitimate pop star, which means that you are competing with other pop stars. Some of them have managers and publicists. And because YouTube is so thoroughly normalised any rules that apply to it will apply to any other form of promotion.

Are you good-looking? Do you know someone famous? Did you go to university with someone who has a bit of influence in the BBC? Do you have a live following? Can you say controversial things in interviews etc? Are you charismatic, engaging? Can you consistently put out sick beats and keep at it? Etc.
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by TumeniKnobs »

Yeah, getting more exposure is hard and requires a ton of time and effort to get a following. I don’t think there’s anything dirty or filthy about musicians associating with instruments. It’s done at all levels in the music biz by many highly respected artists and makers. It’s beneficial for both and they do it because it works.
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by Karl_Joseph »

Ashley Pomeroy wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:02 pm
Karl_Joseph wrote: Sun May 08, 2022 11:53 amI don’t want to do that anymore (and haven’t been the last couple of vidz I’ve put out) because I want my “art” to stand on its own and not based on trending “product visibility”. The problem is the videos that I don’t mention gear usage doesn’t get the same exposure.
I apologise for calling you Shirley, but surely you're now in the same position as any other aspiring pop star. Once you ditch the synth-geek part of your internet persona you're in the same position as e.g. Aldous Harding, Igorrr, Wet Leg etc. And before them The Specials, The Clash etc. Your videos aren't getting views because you aren't promoting them.

You now aspire to being a legitimate pop star, which means that you are competing with other pop stars. Some of them have managers and publicists. And because YouTube is so thoroughly normalised any rules that apply to it will apply to any other form of promotion.

Are you good-looking? Do you know someone famous? Did you go to university with someone who has a bit of influence in the BBC? Do you have a live following? Can you say controversial things in interviews etc? Are you charismatic, engaging? Can you consistently put out sick beats and keep at it? Etc.
You can take the internet persona out of the synth geek but you can never take the synth geek out of my internet persona.... also, my best friend is a dog.

I guess I'm going to have to settle for sub 100 subscribers and very few plays.

I need an entourage!
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by bwhittington »

Congrats, you seem to have found a new way to promote your channel. Enjoyed the video.
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by chaosium »

Karl_Joseph wrote: Mon May 09, 2022 11:13 am I liked the Basseck/perfect circuit Syntakt video
Probably the spot to compliment the Perfect Circuit people on good curating of videos, even as marketing.

I barely watch “synth demos” but for the most part I’ll *always* take the time to watch a Circuit video, the jams work musically and even if it doesn’t sell me on the device itself.
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by everydaycurry »

Lux A Turner wrote: Mon May 09, 2022 11:45 am Maybe that's why videos which mention specific modules get more views - because research.
This and because what are you going to search to find these videos otherwise - "electronic music"? "Eurorack music"? Certain module names can lead you to good music even if that wasn't the original purpose of the search (that's how I found Elinch - I'm not even into ambient but I enjoy their videos).

Youtube's also just not really a venue for finding music (IMO) - the old cultural mediators of labels/records/touring and attendant press (getting reviews, blog posts, social media) are how I find new stuff to listen to, not surfing YT.
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Re: Dirty Filthy Brand Marketing and YouTube

Post by commodorejohn »

The best thing you can do with that whole cretinous "scene" is ignore it completely. Let it have no impact whatsoever on anything you do. If you want to tag a video with gear, do that - not because you're trying to be hot and trendy, but simply 'cause it's a fact, useful information completely irrespective of what's "hip" at the moment. F'rexample, if I'm looking at a piece of gear, it's genuinely helpful to be able to find tracks that demonstrate or prominently feature it so I can get a feel for the way it sounds; that's also why I include gear info on my own videos. There's no reason you should have to feel bad about it because a bunch of dipshits are chasing clicks by coincidentally similar methods.
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