How to grab attention in short bursts with Beme’s Casey Neistat

YouTube star and Beme co-founder Casey Neistat jaunted on stage slightly late and sporting neon yellow shoes at TechCrunch Disrupt NYC this morning to talk about his app and what it’s like sharing everything about himself to his millions of online fans every day.

He’s got a knack for grabbing attention, garnering views from millions of what he says are mostly teenage fans — but then he’s also been at it since the age of fifteen, himself.

Neistat most recently gained notoriety for snowboarding behind a Jeep through New York City during the January 2016 snowstorm.

The cognitive load between thinking about sharing and actually sharing is tremendous. Casey Neistat
What makes fans come back for more? “Probably my amazing good looks. I don’t know what else to attribute it to,” he joked on stage.

Neistat launched his unedited social video app, Beme, last Summer to the applause of millions of those YouTube fans because he says he wanted something to bridge the divide between creativity and live, unedited sharing.

He’s a character able to pull in massive amounts of attention with stunt videos, but admits he spends at least four to eight hours every day editing down all the footage he captures of his life.

Beme “was a really stupid thing to do,” he admits. But he says he built it to cut out the act of manipulation through editing so users must simply share their videos on the spot.

“The cognitive load between thinking about sharing and actually sharing is tremendous,” he said.

But the first iteration of Beme confused users. “The product was too far away from the promise,” he said.

So he tore the whole thing down and rebuilt it — recently relaunching the new version and also adding it to Android.

It’s a quick four-second snip of your life, something Neistat says lends authenticity.

“I’m not thinking about this as a creative expression,” he said. “I couldn’t think about the last thing I posted on Beme. I’m not thinking about it.”


Something else Neistat authentically shared onstage was Beme’s raise and burn rate — $6.6 million in funding, with a burn rate of $180,000 per month. “And ask me what my salary is,” Neistat said, to which he proudly told TechCrunch moderator, Fitz Tepper, he doesn’t pay himself at all right now.

The new app launched just days ago and Neistat says it already has 100,000 downloads on iOS and 75,000 downloads on Android.

But the app is just eight days out and Neistat gets that’s not an accurate picture of what the growth will be in the future.

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