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Sunday, March 13, 2016

Can I Be Something Besides A Tortoise?

I've been thinking a lot lately about the story of the Tortoise and the Hare. Specifically, I've been thinking this in connection to (no surprise) our show. We've already determined that one needs to spend money on promotion and we're really okay with that. All businesses need to promote and advertise. Why should we be any different? But there are many ways in which one can spend that money and that's where it becomes interesting and a little troubling.

Brands and anyone who might invest in you and your show want to see that you have large numbers of followers on whatever your chosen platform. Whether YouTube, Instagram, Snapchat or something else, they want to see that thousands of people will see their product if you're using or promoting it. Makes perfect sense. So we all do whatever we can do entice people to follow us. Obviously making great content helps, but getting that content in front of lots and lots of eyes is even better. But there is a less savory way of developing a following and that is to purchase it outright. Some creators buy views or subscribers from a number of online services that promise the boost they're hoping for. Suddenly someone who typically gets 100 views on an episode or tweet or photo is getting thousands or lots of new subscribers. Sounds great, right? Well, it's great until YouTube (or whichever platform) catches on and suspends your channel/page/account. I'm too afraid of that happening to buy views or subscribers, but I have to admit it pains me when I see folks benefiting from doing just that, while we toil, trying to raise our profile the old fashioned way. I wonder whether or not I'm an idiot and if my moral compass is just a little too strict? I'm not going to buy followers or views, but I definitely see why others do.

So we plod pokily along to the finish line. We'll be able to cross it with our heads held high, knowing that we did the right thing. But isn't there some legal, ethical way to speed things up at least a little?! Maybe we don't want to be hares, but can't we be - I don't know - roadrunners or something? I'd like to reap benefits while I'm still young enough to know what I'm reaping!

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