Last year, Walk Off the Earth came out with a video on January 5 that would become a YouTube sensation, a cover of Gotye's "Somebody That I Used to Know." It had 5 members of the band all playing one guitar, and it would go on to be the second-highest viewed video of 2012. WOTE is kicking off 2013 with a cover of Taylor Swift's "I Knew You Were Trouble," teaming with amazing beatboxer KRNFX. Collaboration is becoming increasingly important in how YouTube perceives your channel, so this is a good example of that.
Walk Off the Earth with KRNFX: I Knew You Were Trouble
First off, we'll take a look at the original Taylor Swift video. There's about 2 minutes or so of a mini-movie before the song begins:
Now, here's Walk Off the Earth with KRNFX, and the result is pretty awesome:
I love how all the backing vocals basically steal the show here, as they basically all recreate the song's instruments from voice alone.
Now, it's not likely this becomes a "Somebody That I Used to Know" type of hit, mainly because it doesn't have that unique 5-on-1 guitar kind of content. That setup drove views, then Gotye's original song blew up, and WOTE got a lot more based on the song's increasing popularity, owed much in part to what they did with it. That said, it should be one of Walk Off the Earth's more popular videos when all is said and done, because of the Taylor Swift connection and the collaboration with KRNFX, who's carved out a nice audience on YouTube in his own right.
Here's KRNFX's collaboration with Mike Song that got over a million views:
Collaboration is becoming key for YouTube as they try to make the video sphere more social. When you have a channel that has acquired a decent following, and you can find another channel that has a similar audience, and you can collaborate in a way that makes sense for both channels, then you can potentially double your audience. Collaboration has become a requirement to be able to use YouTube's new production space.
This year, definitely consider trying to find channels you can team up with and make some amazing content. It's a great way to build an audience and usually pretty fun.