Saratoga lip dub, a week later

The Saratoga lip dub remixed with a dubstep track. Posted by YouTube user BrothaMouzone1.

It's been just about week since the much-hyped Saratoga lib dub was released -- and it's been viewed a little more than 35,500 times on YouTube.

That's not bad, but as Drew pointed out recently, it doesn't even come close to the total number of views for that clip of drunk people knocking down the horse statue on Broadway. Two of the most popular postings of that video total more than 120,000 views. (Sure, those videos are much older, but if you check the stats, most of their views came shortly after they were posted.)

The lip dub's view count might not be notable if it weren't for the fact that Saratoga officials were aiming for a mark somewhat higher than 35k -- 10 million views. That figure was probably never realistic (at least, without a sneezing baby panda), but it gives a sense of the kind of hopes people had for this effort. And, we're guessing, the video wasn't cheap to make. [WNYT]

It's hard to create viral stuff -- and however much skill someone might develop for it, there's always going to be a certain amount of luck involved. The situation also highlights why it's important to not copy what other places have done. People -- especially people online -- love novelty. If you're the nth college/business/city to do a lip dub (or whatever), you'll have to fight a lot of lip dub fatigue.

In the case of the successful Grand Rapids lip dub, it was both relatively novel (for a city) and there was a strong reason for it to exist (a response to a claim that the city was "dying"). The Saratoga video lacked both novelty and a backing narrative.

Still, we give the organizers credit for trying something different than the usual regional marketing effort. And they were able to organize an impressive number of people who, by all accounts, had fun and generated some community spirit (that's something!). But they probably should have tried something even more different. And unique to Saratoga. And, yep, that's hard.

Also: next time, more "Yakety Sax."


> The situation also highlights why it's important to not copy
> what other places have done.

Unless you copy it to the right place :) Proof that nobody watches Vimeo, I had posted that "drunk people Benny Hill remix" 2 days before the one crakrjack's posted on YouTube, and it collected 30 times less views. Woops. I could have made a whole $5 in ads by now. Kids, remember, quantity > quality.

Youtube views are a bad metric to go by in terms of measuring success. They don't really mean anything.

The people at Google are all signed to NDAs, so how those views are calculated is a mystery.

So, it's too bad the video didn't do better, but I wouldn't go so far as to call it a failure or measure it against those other videos. Videos get bumps in views for different reasons (usually because of numerous media outlets linking to it or it finding a nice spot in the search rankings.)

I turned it off after 30 seconds- no interest in watching people I don't know lip sync badly to music I hate. It's like listening to bar karaoke while sober.

I major mistake with this LipDub. The was no lip dub. Nothing here to watch. Just a tape of people on the street with a crappy techno soundtrack.
Show a little more creativity please..

To be honest, the Saratoga lipdub was rather lame. Music was slow, video just panned along a crowd. No organization or sense. I didn't like it very much.

Weak, I'd rather watch the Water Slide World commercial again. Its way more creative.

Nobody was lip synching, nobody knew the words or the video was just poorly made. How much did this cost again?

"Still, we give the organizers credit for trying something different than the usual regional marketing effort."

Actually at this point lip dubs have lost their appeal. They were popular in 2010.

The Grand Rapids lipdub was great - Saratoga's, not so much. It frustrated me that no one was actually lip-synching. Just a lot of waving. I'm not sure how it's going to encourage people to visit Saratoga Springs.

Can someone just put an end to the lip-dub trend already?

If, as has been reported in some places ( the video cost $25,000 to make, then it's a colossal failure. That works out to around $0.75 per page view.

If it goes viral now, it's more likely going to be people like myself watching to see why it's been such a failure.

I didn't get the point of it then and I still don't get it.

That was a lot of money to spend and far be it from me to dictate where the Chamber spends it's money but I'd have been a hell of a lot more impressed had that $25,000 went to a good cause. Flood damage, perhaps?

Sorry to go all Debbie Downer...

For one thing, the Grand Rapids lip dub has a much better soundtrack... "Bye Bye Miss American Pie" vs a medley of songs by Train. Which is ironic since Don McLean supposedly wrote "American Pie" while sitting in Tin 'n' Lint in Saratoga.

I agree with Jennifer. I just don't get it.

Good intentions, poor execution. Anything that is 13 minutes long is ineffective advertising and a poor excuse to dabble in social media. Furthermore, when you do try to emulate something like a lip dub - get the basics straight - good song (1) that means something to the location and video that isn't so fast and so long that you can't even sit through it or see the faces trying to lip sync.

$25,000 to $35,000 is a tough pill to swallow when today, many major YouTube talent acts are spending as little at $850 an episode for their shows - AND getting millions of views. There are agencies in this town that produce videos for the YouTube market for less than 25% of what you spent.

What the Saratoga Lip Dub did prove is that companies can't just claim they are video experts or social media mavens. You have to truly understand what it takes to be viral and what content people want to see.

That's a lot of Chamber dues for something that is now being called a giant waste of time and resources. I'd be curious if they are receiving any counsel on how to clean this up - like for example - a response...

Anyone can get on a truck and shoot video. Modern Mix should be re-editing this using every video trick in the book to salvage what a mess this turned out to be.

*Love* this Youtube comment:

this is terribly embarrassing, both as a saratoga resident and to white people in general.

chloepecorino 1 day ago

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