For those comedians who are motivated to become a stand-up comedy sensation on YouTube…
To become a hit on YouTube, you need a video that goes viral.
And for most comedians, that simply isn’t going to happen because…
For a stand-up comedy video to go viral on YouTube (meaning the link to the video is passed along from person to person over and over again), it must have very broad appeal to a large segment of people.
Unfortunately, most stand-up comedians don’t develop a stand-up comedy act that does have broad appeal — it has appeal to only a certain segment of the population.
This aspect of stand-up comedy actually has ramifications beyond the mere viral potential of YouTube videos because…
The more limited the audience a comedian can perform for effectively, the fewer performing opportunities are available to those comedians as a general rule.
Don’t get me wrong — some comedians can do very well in segmented markets (ethnic, gay, Christian, etc) and get some fairly decent play on YouTube.
Tim Hawkins is one such comedian who gets a ton of views on YouTube without the usual “star” power needed to get that level of attention with online videos (his testimonial is on the home page at Killerstandup.com).
But the big brass ring as far as stand-up comedy goes is to develop a stand-up comedy act that has appeal to the widest possible audience (which usually — but not always — affects a comedian’s income potential).
This is one of the reasons why a growing number of comedy club comedians develop a comedy club act and a corporate type or family friendly act (which pays 10-30 times more than a comedy club headliner performance).
Needless to say, this same aspect of broad appeal also affects the “virility” potential of a stand-up comedy video on YouTube.
Ironically, one of the most highly viewed viral videos in the history of YouTube was a 6 minute stand-up comedy performance by Justin Laipply called the Evolution of Dance:
Why did this YouTube video go massively viral? Very, very broad appeal.
Someone watching the video doesn’t even have to be able to understand English to be entertained by this funny video clip because it is physical comedy coupled with music.
But as a general rule…
Comedians will usually get more views on YouTube with bad performances or getting heckled while they are performing than they will with a killer stand-up comedy set unless they have “star” recognition.
And as always, there are exceptions to the rule.
So, now you know why stand-up comedy YouTube videos don’t usually go viral.