Thirteen year old Rebecca Black has become an overnight sensation with her hit song ‘Friday’. Her song has been viewed on YouTube more than 57 million times, surpassing Lady Gaga whose song ‘Born This Way’ has 24 million views!
Why did Black’s song become a hit? Believe it or not, it started getting passed around the web as a ‘cheesy’ song that had poor lyrics! The songs were written and produced by Ark Music Factory, a company that helps anyone who is talented and willing to pay $2000. While others may be laughing at the song, Rebecca is laughing her way to the bank! At 70 cents for each iTunes download, Rebecca is earning $27,000 per week. Not bad for a 13 year old, who was initially upset at the reviews, but is now enjoying her new found stardom. She now has a webpage and has even hired a manager.
So, what is this YouTube phenomenon that takes relatively unknown people and makes them a star? From babies that cannot stop laughing, to artists like 10 year old Maria Aragon who was recently invited by Lady Gaga to sing on stage, it seems anyone with talent can become famous these days.
A Marketing Genius
YouTube was an idea born out of a need. It was started in 2005 by three co-workers who were frustrated trying to email a video clip. Within a couple of hours, they had sketched a rough plan for a video sharing platform.
What makes the YouTube story particularly fascinating is that the company did not know how to make money, and did not spend any on advertising either. They relied on people to spread the word -- a term known as viral marketing. YouTube had made it easy for anyone to upload a video and e-mail a link to share with family and friends. They allowed other websites to embed their video, which is how Youngzine is able to bring you videos in our articles.
Millions started using YouTube, and it soon became a part of our culture, just as Facebook has done more recently. Google bought the company in 2006 for a staggering $1.65 billion!
YouTube has changed the way people view videos. It has made videos more social, allowing anyone to upload and share. Gone are the days when the smallest video clips were at least 30 minutes long - now, one minute clips are equally acceptable! Lastly, the ability to reach millions of people has changed how videos are distributed, no longer controlled by Hollywood and its distributors.
Companies and news organizations are using YouTube for storing and sharing their videos these days. Many others like Ark Music Factory are producing videos to be solely distributed on YouTube. It is hard to imagine that just a decade ago, artists were struggling to showcase their talents.
We leave you with another all time great, a video that has been viewed 168 million times -- 'Dance Evolution' by comedian Judson Laipply, who acts out the history of 20th century dance.