I made a little minimalist colony building sim in a month, with the plan to sell it on Steam. I did this for several reasons
1) High class whores aren’t cheap
2) Test if “gamers” actually want something different
3) Test the power of the distribution network (Youtube and Steam for customer acquisitions)
For this I intended on using my existing Youtube channel and four episodes of videos used to promote the launch of Outer Frontier.
A Little Background
I have dipped in and out of making Youtube videos over several years, using it as a creative outlet and producing a varied collection of videos there.
This is a very bad way of doing videos on Youtube. You see the Youtube algorithm is the SOLE entity that decides if you video will be seen by any real number of people. The audience is looking for consistency, be that the type of video and the quantity.
It’s by getting the audience to leave likes and comments that trigger the code to show your video to more people.
Never make different types of content, work feverishly and always side with the mob advise to prosper on Youtube.
I did non of that.
So I went into this little experiment with 32k subscribers who don’t get notified of my content and around 5 million existing channels views.
Why Make Indie Dev videos
Believe it or not, despite game development being a niche genre it can attract a fair amount of interest. And those videos who can make the topic more appealing to a wider audience can get some fantastic viewing figures.
This is why I decided to create four episodes of an entertaining dev log with a short video length to maximise audience engagement and retention.
The results used expect for this, providing your videos aren’t dogshit, would be around 200-400 for a brand new channel. With better produced but still niche channels getting between 2k-5k. Break out channels that can make the topic appeal to the general public can get in the algorithm and get 10’s of thousands if not in the 100’s of thousands of view range.
Well my channel has 32k subs remember, so I should get 3k views easy and when you see the type of view it is you’d understand it would grow much, much higher, right?
The first video I put up at the time of writing this has 66 views, 1 comment which was me sharing a link to the Steam page. It has a total of 8 rating with that consisting of 7 thumbs up and 1 homosexual.
Maybe my thumbnail was clickable enough, maybe the content wasn’t what a Youtube audience wants?
Without sound like I’m high on my own farts -this is complete bullshit, daddy knows how to make a thumbnail. As for the content it’s specifically targeted at the Youtube audience.
So what’s occurring?
There are several factors at play here.
First it is evident my channel has been put under some kind of restriction, as I mentioned earlier the numbers I should be getting compared to the actual number of views would suggest this. There are videos dealing with Youtube’s shady practises if you’d like to know more.
It seems to be a tactic to make the individual feel isolated, in the hope they will lose interest. If they ever lose their government protected status, then it would be interesting to see what they would face, seeing as they are a publisher and not just a platform. A title they have earned ever since they implemented a forced wall of content dictated by their algorithm and got rid of the free market.
Still the channels isn’t on the real naughty step where they unperson you - yet.
Secondly and more importantly is the wider implication for the platform as a whole and what it’s doing to the customer base.
You see Youtube’s strict control over who it promotes inevitably creates an us and them mentality with the viewers. Then pair that with content having to constantly push boundaries to stay afloat leads to a great apathy in the audience.
The videos get more outrageous and the video producer asks for likes constantly. The savvy viewer only wants to promote the content they like, so they don’t comment or rate as they used to do so often before. The crowd being lead by the crowd see a lack of engagement being the reason for them not o engage and the cycle continues.
A note has to be made about audiences themselves in that they are highly creatures of habit. Go to your favourite channel or a very popular channel and look at the views for the thing they are found for versus content for them or about them. You know the “channel update” or “I’m starting a Patreon” types of video.
Despite the following they have these will always perform poorly in comparison. This isn’t just because people are self or tight fisted, although that can play a big part for some people. It has to do with repetition.
They found you for one type of thing and they want to see that over and over and over again. For this reason it maybe be better to make a separate channel for each type of content you make, otherwise your own audience will punish you in results.
My own subscriber base assumed my dev logs would be serious, when they come for the comedy, zany pop culture type of stuff. They viewed them as just a “support me” type of video so ignored, when in fact they are an awesome piece of internet history that they have missed out on - the bunch of cunts.
Luckily I went into these videos like I do all my videos and that’s is do them for me.I launch the game in a few days so I’ll do an update on that too.