Welcome to YouTube Millionaires, where we profile channels that have recently crossed the one million subscriber mark. There are channels crossing this threshold every week, and each has a story to tell about YouTube success. Read previous installments of YouTube Millionaires here.
If you want to get swole, you should tune in to the Buff Dudes channel. The titular Dudes are a pair of brothers, Hudson and Brandon White, certainly live up to their shared title. They’re fitness aficionados who love to work out and enjoy sharing their best tips with viewers. When they’re not busy getting buff, they talk about healthy eating and star in sketches that make use of their imposing physical statures. Here’s our chat with the White brothers, who are partnered with Whistle Sports, about their digital workout empire:
Tubefilter: How does it feel to have one million subscribers? What do you have to say to your fans?
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Hudson White: It feels great! There was a time not so long ago when I had set my phone to make a certain notification whenever we got a new subscriber and whenever I heard it I was ecstatic. On days where I got 10 or more of those sounds it was a real highlight, so the fact that it’s grown to one million of those sounds (though I shut the notification sound off my phone long ago, much to my friends and families delight) is absolutely amazing. To our subscribers, I would like to say thanks for sticking with us and thanks for the constructive criticism and suggestions over the years, as it’s really helped to build our channel.
TF: What made you guys decide to launch a YouTube channel?
HW: I had done work as an independent director/editor in Oregon and Brandon had years of experience as a personal trainer so we figured “why not combine the two?” We’ve always been big fans of shows such as Bill Nye the Science Guy and Blind Date as well as 80s/90s culture, and wanted to mash them all up in easy-to-follow food and fitness videos. What really pushed us in the direction of YouTube was when we got a chance to see a video called “The Glitch” by Corridor Digital. Up until then I thought YouTube was reserved for goofy cat videos and movie trailers and it was at that point we realized there were people doing weekly uploads and building followings and we wanted to follow in those footsteps.
TF: Who do you see as your average viewer, and how do you appeal to that person?
Brandon White: We see our average viewer as someone who might want an alternative to your usual food and fitness videos. In fact, it’s always a real compliment when we hear “I enjoy the entertainment aspect of your videos the most,” as our goal is to make just that — entertaining videos that will hopefully show you a cool new exercise or recipe idea along the way.
HW: As far as appealing to that group we like to keep our videos simple and straight to the point and always try to keep people guessing what the new video will be about. From Gym Wildlife to Punisher’s Bodyweight Workout, we try to make the title just quirky enough where you’ll go “what’s this one about?”
TF: What steps do you take to make sure your videos are appropriate for people at different fitness levels?
BW: It’s easy to forget there may be viewers with not much fitness experience, so we’ve learned that repetition is key. Even if we’ve repeated the same thing a thousand times, it’s still good to repeat it again anyways as someone may be watching for the first time. We also try and stray away from really specific topics where only a small group of people will be interested as it really excludes a large portion of our audience.
TF: What’s the number one tip you’d give to someone who is just beginning to seriously workout?
HW: Consistency. It’s going to take time to make progress, learn proper form and, since everyone is different, learn what routine your body responds to best. I’ve been working out for almost half my life and I’m still learning new things. Don’t give up!
BW: Learn the major compound exercises (Deadlifts, Squats, Overhead Press, Pull-Ups, and Bench Press) and remember this: When it comes to the amount of weight you’re lifting you are the only one in the gym. When it comes to using equipment you are not the only one in the gym.
TF: Your videos tend to be well-shot. How much do you prioritize cinematography when creating your content?
HW: That’s a major factor in our videos and we’re continuing to make it more of a priority with each new video shot. YouTube is an entertainment medium and we always like to keep that in mind. In addition, we like to create videos we ourselves would like to see and what we definitely would not like to see is two dudes in monotone voices in front of a dry erase board spending 30 minutes covering a topic that could have been done in three entertaining minutes.
TF: How did you get into creating sketch videos, and where do you get your ideas from?
BW: Epic Rap Battles of History was a huge inspiration as they were the first channel (in addition to Corridor Digital) that showed us the capabilities of running a YouTube channel. ‘
HW: We get most of our ideas from current events, obscure pop culture, and general things we both find funny. As we’re both big fans of art and animation we try and throw that element in as much as possible and hope to continue that trend with an assortment of bizarre live-action/animated videos. Keep it weird.
TF: Do you think there are any areas where the YouTube fitness community as an entity could stand to improve?
HW: There’s definitely a fear culture among a large part of the fitness community and unfortunately, the more outlandish the statement, the more views the videos tend to get, so I’m not sure how soon it’ll disappear. If we could improve anything it would be not focusing on the fear but the fact that with proper education, fitness and food don’t have to be scary. They’re nowhere near as hard or complicated as people may have led you to believe.
TF: What’s next for your channel? Any fun plans?
BW: To close out 2016, we’ve got a group of the biggest skit videos we’ve done to date, so we’re excited to finish post-production and get them out there. In addition, we plan on starting 2017 with a bulking plan and we’ll be taking a teenager along with us on a three month journey to gain muscle and get buff. It should be a lot of fun and we’re excited to have our subscribers follow along.
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