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The Full Story of BENOFTHEWEEK

Ben of the week is a popular internet curator who discusses various topics on his YouTube channel. He gained millions of views and has over 6 million subscribers. Ben started posting videos at a young age and was inspired by other YouTubers. His content gained traction on TikTok, leading to increased viewership on YouTube. Ben's videos cover a range of subjects, including satirical commentary and storytelling. He has also collaborated with brands and believes in maintaining creative control. Ben's success has allowed him to pursue a career as a full-time creator. He values authenticity and enjoys the creative process. While he has fears and challenges, he continues to explore and experiment with his content. Ben believes in building long-term brand relationships and emphasizes the importance of enjoying the company of brand partners. He sees AdSense as a sufficient source of income and values the creative freedom it provides. Ben is open to opportunities beyond YouTube and believes in building something that provides security and options for the future.


Key Points

(00:00:04) - Ben of the week is a curator of the underbelly of the internet (00:00:14) - Ben discusses the emergence of young creators born into the internet era (00:00:35) - Ben's videos gained millions of views on various topics (00:00:50) - Ben has over 6 million subscribers and was nominated for a Streamy award (00:01:20) - Discord allows creators to build communities and diversify revenue streams (00:02:29) - Ben started posting videos on YouTube and Vine at a young age (00:03:18) - Ben was inspired by YouTubers like Shane Dawson and PewDiePie (00:05:46) - Ben's content gained traction on TikTok, leading to increased YouTube viewership (00:06:37) - Ben's videos on TikTok served as bite-sized versions of his YouTube content (00:06:57) - Ben's videos gained popularity due to the algorithm and the influx of viewers from TikTok (00:07:14) - Ben's idea to release a crab into the ocean was inspired by a high school experience (00:07:27) - Bought and released a crab, faced backlash (00:07:54) - Viral ideas on TikTok are relatable and turn small things into big deals (00:08:29) - TikTok lends itself well to satire and storytelling (00:09:12) - Created a satirical video about flushing dry ice down the toilet (00:09:26) - TikTok culture shifted from jokes to taking everything at face value (00:09:55) - Made videos about the vegan teacher, confronted her in a documentary-style video (00:10:45) - The vegan teacher's content provides material for YouTubers (00:11:30) - Met up with the vegan teacher to convey a nuanced message about veganism (00:12:33) - Described as a jester, making unserious videos and tackling various topics with comedy (00:13:15) - Uses humor as a storytelling mechanism to explore subcultures (00:14:01) - Comedy adds silliness and safety to storytelling, making it approachable for audiences (00:14:53) - First brand deal: LoveSac, received a LoveSac for an Instagram post, no payment (00:15:09) - First paid brand deal: Ralph Lauren on TikTok, swung a tennis racket for 30 seconds to a non-copyrighted song (00:15:32) - Brands trying to connect with Gen Z, trusting creators' creative vision (00:16:28) - Challenging to appeal to Gen Z, need people who emerged from that culture (00:16:54) - Gen Z appreciates authenticity, not trying to use Gen Z humor (00:17:26) - Gen Z humor example: using "unalive" instead of "dead" on TikTok (00:18:19) - Chronically online generation, grew up with the internet (00:19:28) - Internet now different from before, more algorithms and data-driven (00:20:00) - Making videos with longer shelf life, not relying on current trends (00:20:45) - Curating and exploring internet trends, like the vegan teacher (00:21:56) - Spending time on news app, limited time on TikTok (30 minutes) (00:22:04) - Using a passcode to limit screen time, avoiding excessive use (00:22:36) - Scrolling through TikTok for hours can overload the brain with information. (00:23:10) - Detaching from TikTok has improved attention span and ability to read news articles. (00:23:25) - TikTok content varies, from city planning to civil engineering. (00:24:00) - Suggestion to connect with others who have similar algorithms on TikTok. (00:24:16) - YouTube lacks originality, except for creators like EMP Lemon. (00:25:14) - Plagiarism video inspired by Emma Chamberlain's podcast. (00:25:31) - Lack of interest in clicking on recommended videos. (00:26:00) - YouTube poop genre, like random edits of Simpsons episodes. (00:27:00) - Different eras of YouTube, including Minecraft and edgy content. (00:28:29) - Transformation of creators like Joji and Rockaraka Boys into musicians and filmmakers. (00:29:17) - YouTube as a platform for creative expression and experimentation. (00:30:06) - Joji and The Rocker Rocco are creative in various mediums (00:30:18) - Casey Neistat's daily vlogs inspired the speaker (00:30:39) - The speaker emulated Casey Neistat's style but had less content to share (00:31:30) - The speaker felt overwhelmed when their audience started growing (00:32:00) - The speaker didn't have commercial intent initially, just wanted to be part of the creative world (00:32:39) - The speaker enjoys making videos and doesn't have a strong desire for extreme success or money (00:33:37) - The speaker went full-time as a creator in 2020 when AdSense started generating revenue (00:34:18) - Brand deals on TikTok were limited, so the speaker relied on live streaming donations (00:35:06) - The speaker's income was low, and they struggled financially in 2019 (00:35:59) - AdSense revenue allowed the speaker to consider a career as a creator (00:36:18) - Making enough to cover rent and expenses was the goal for the speaker (00:37:01) - The speaker didn't have a backup plan and didn't enjoy studying journalism (00:37:47) - Started podcasting, not passionate about it (00:38:00) - Disliked grammar classes in college (00:38:19) - First successful YouTube videos were about crabs and fake TikTok house (00:38:49) - Found success with Zoom hacking videos (00:40:07) - YouTube audience stronger than TikTok audience (00:40:31) - Built a community on YouTube (00:41:05) - Success is when respected people reach out (00:42:43) - Inspired by Ryan Trahan's TikTok video (00:43:37) - Uses Final Cut Pro for editing (00:44:01) - Lo-Fi style requires attention to detail (00:44:26) - Filming on iPad for a bigger screen (00:45:19) - Started using lavalier mics but didn't like them (00:45:28) - Half intentional, half stubbornness in using lavalier mics (00:45:37) - Don't fix what's not broken, don't add friction to the process (00:45:44) - Want to feel like the creator, comedy and commentary come through the edits (00:46:00) - Can't believe shooting with an iPad (00:46:12) - Sometimes wish for an editor, but hard to work with and control freak with editing (00:46:23) - Can't pass on the reins, hard to work with others (00:46:29) - Team aspects like getting help with filming could be considered (00:46:42) - Social interaction being filmed is a dead giveaway, prefer filming alone (00:47:11) - Comfortable being alone, more aware of being filmed with others (00:47:18) - Appetite for risk is higher than most, scared of social interactions (00:47:29) - YouTube helps with social interaction fears, more comfortable with version of self on camera (00:48:00) - Went to North Korea alone on a tour, genuine want to explore (00:48:19) - Appetite for risk is higher, scared of social interactions in different ways (00:49:01) - Scared of social interactions like collabs, but not scared of North Korea (00:49:14) - Omegle in real life video was scary due to social interaction (00:49:22) - YouTube helps with social interaction fears, more comfortable with version of self on camera (00:49:45) - Social interaction is not scary, YouTube helps with fear of social interaction (00:50:10) - Real-time interaction can't be edited like YouTube videos (00:50:34) - Instagram is still relevant, fun to play around on stories (00:51:15) - Snapchat feels like a hostage, no cultural weight, fleeting content (00:52:07) - Snapchat is like layers of ads in subway tunnels, easily forgotten (00:52:29) - Creators drawn to Snapchat for money, not fun to post 400 frames of daily life (00:52:41) - Different social media platforms approached differently, TikTok, YouTube, and Instagram are distinct (00:52:49) - Text finalizes while trying to type something on create mode (00:53:10) - Balenciaga sees accidental online trends as what is needed (00:53:23) - Being chronically online creates inside jokes and tight bonds in communities (00:54:01) - Gen Z humor finds anything and everything funny (00:54:55) - YouTube shorts' discoverability is impressive (00:55:27) - YouTube shorts lacks a strong culture compared to TikTok (00:56:59) - YouTube wants to be a culture driver like TikTok (00:57:11) - YouTube shorts allows for deeper connections with creators (00:57:48) - Most of the growth on YouTube came from shorts (00:58:22) - Dry ice short has around 60 million views (00:58:40) - TikTok is still a culture driver with many people on the app (00:59:31) - TikTok has more creativity and cultural influence compared to shorts and reels (00:59:55) - TikTok is currently the main stage of American culture (01:00:42) - TikTok is still riding off its popularity and there is no new platform to replace it yet (01:00:58) - Reels is fun and low-pressure, but not a major content platform (01:02:00) - Collaboration with Mr. Beast happened during the minion meme frenzy (01:00:25) - Asked to drive an inflatable Minion from LA to North Carolina, but it was shipped instead (01:00:51) - Was still in the video, had fun killing a giant minion with Spears (01:01:06) - Shocked to be in a Mr Beast TikTok video with other creators (01:01:20) - Mr Beast was chill and down to earth (01:01:28) - YouTube video was satire on building large things for Mr Beast (01:01:45) - Maximalism on YouTube is peaking, new wave YouTubers like moist criticals and Marcus Bradley (01:02:00) - Marcus Bradley has been here the whole time, innovates within his own style (01:02:14) - Unapologetically themselves creators will last a long time (01:02:41) - Found footing on TikTok in 2020 with satirical skits (01:03:30) - Worries about TikTok getting banned, restrict act could hurt all platforms (01:04:11) - Won't miss TikTok for earning potential, never received Creator funds (01:04:35) - Doesn't do brand deals often, prefers creative control and AdSense income (01:05:11) - AdSense is cleanest form of monetization, no revisions or timelines (01:05:27) - AdSense requires significant views for substantial income (01:06:10) - Lucky to have AdSense as main income, thinks about next five years and being creative (01:06:56) - Building connections with creative people, open to producing things off YouTube (01:07:19) - Being able to make a living being creative is an insane gift (01:07:43) - Making videos since 2013 (01:07:59) - Fear of losing identity outside of making videos (01:08:05) - Thinking about making YouTube videos every week since 2011 (01:08:18) - Reflecting on the impact of making videos for 10 years (01:08:30) - Feeling the change from hobby to job (01:09:00) - Finding new hobbies to maintain interest (01:09:12) - Choosing not to start a gaming channel to keep it as a hobby (01:10:00) - Compartmentalizing business thoughts from video-making (01:10:39) - Having a management team, attorney, and publicist (01:11:19) - Publicist team securing opportunities like a Newsweek article (01:11:39) - Advice for creators: start with what you have, don't compare yourself to others (01:12:57) - Seeking advice from experienced creators on building brand relationships (01:14:03) - Importance of enjoying the company of brand partners for long-term relationships (01:14:25) - Working with a small group of sponsors with the same mission (01:14:56) - Understanding your mission statement to attract like-minded brands (01:15:13) - Building brand partnerships takes time (01:15:24) - Long-term brand relationships are with individual creators (01:15:29) - Consider available time for communication with brands (01:15:38) - Possibility of working with one brand that understands and aligns with the creator's values (01:15:55) - Each video requires a unique approach and mental space (01:16:00) - No set formula for creating videos (01:16:13) - AdSense has been sufficient for the creator's business (01:16:18) - AdSense allows for creative freedom and exploration (01:16:41) - Creativity can lead to opportunities beyond YouTube, such as directing or creating for other platforms (01:17:11) - Being a creative person can involve working on projects without brand partnerships (01:17:25) - Some creators create brands or products that feel like money grabs (01:18:21) - Many people try to profit off of successful creators (01:19:00) - Building something beyond YouTube can provide security and options for the future (01:19:38) - Offers from potential partners can vary in quality and alignment with the creator's goals (01:20:06) - Partners should want the creator to succeed but not rely on the creator's success for their own financial stability

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