Magic, Pranks

Magic Murray

How A Comedy Magician Took On A New Trick Up His Sleeve And Made His Name In The World Of YouTube

Magic, Pranks
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May 31, 2022

Who are you and what kind of content do you create?

I am a comedy magician who has a headlining show at the Tropicana Las Vegas Hotel. The kind of content I do online is magic with a prank angle so it makes an old worn-out trick look new and fresh again by using a different approach to ‘magic’. You’ll see me do many pranks with police officers or parking attendants. Also, I do teach trick segments where you can learn tricks that you can make at home and use to trick your friends and family.

I would consult with my producing partner, Seth Leach, who is a genius when it comes to online ideas, thoughts, and how to get videos to grab your attention. I have been doing magic since I was 7 years old, so I can say that I have been doing it for a lifetime. I go by Murray The Magician or when I act Murray Saw Chuck but when I launched my online videos and YouTube channel we decided to make it Magic Murray as people would search for MAGIC more than MURRAY, so we locked that idea in right away.

Let's go down memory lane, tell us your backstory! 

I started my REAL online presence where I really made waves with viral videos when I got a DM from this guy named Seth Leach. He said he saw my show a couple of years before with his then-girlfriend. He loved it and my magic and then went to see my online presence and basically stated, “I love your magic and your content but no one is watching it! I can change that and make you go viral!” I was like, well, this will be the biggest scam or my next fun and cool adventure. 

We talked a week later when he came to Vegas. We shot four videos which I paid him for in a $3000.00 agreement deal. If it went well, I could continue doing that, or we could become business partners. Two months later he made a new YouTube channel for basically just new content and our ideas. He uploaded one of our now classic drinking videos, and it hit over 110,000 Million views across all our platforms. After that, we agreed to become business partners. That all happened seven years ago.

How do you brainstorm ideas for your content and what is your advice in getting the creative juices flowing?

We just think outside the box. We think of what would get a reaction and what would get people to share our video. It’s about thumbs up, sharing, views, and comments. So you want to come up with an idea that really clicks and makes people go, “You’ve really got to see this!”.

Sometimes we search online for trending topics and then do a spin-off on them, in our own way and brand. Also, I always keep a notepad around and just write every and any idea down, even if it’s lousy or great. It might turn into something even better when you see it on paper.

What are the tools and platforms you use to help with your brand?

We use various editing programs. Usually, whatever we are comfortable with on my phone. I use VivaVideo on my computer. Moreover, I also use Adobe Photoshop and sometimes AVS4YOU, too.

What were your fears when you were starting? How did you handle it? 

I was so used to walking on stage looking my best and doing TV shows that were shot in the best quality. Then, starting a new gig with YouTube, I had to make myself look unassuming and casual. This sold much better than looking all dressed-up or ready to be on stage. The casual laid-back look was much more avant-garde and unassuming which worked well in our videos. So then I bought a ton of various T-shirts and jeans. Normally, I would never perform wearing just a T-shirt and jeans.

Also, when I prank cops, I was always worried about my wholesome brand and what people would say as I am not ‘rocking the boat’ as they state. But going outside my standard brand and re-creating a new brand really worked in my favor.

How did you build your brand to where it is now? Take us through your process.

We started with our first few ideas. Our first one was where I was caught drinking in public by a cop, then I made the champagne bottle vanish. This was really a hit and helped our channel like crazy. We knew we were onto something. We saw a weed prank do well before that by someone and thought, “Let’s make our whole channel this edgy prank magic vibe, doing things a little on the edge”. 

Moneywise, we didn’t really see any dollars until our second year. We posted once or twice a week but then we did it on Wednesday consistently so our fans that we were now gathering could get into a pattern. 

We would shoot two days in Los Angeles maybe 20 to 30 videos then upload them over a period of two months. This was so we didn’t have to shoot daily as with both our schedules and other projects. This made it a lot more manageable as we definitely have to pace ourselves and have a life as well.

For someone who wants to get into content creation, what is your advice?

Listen to someone younger than you or someone who really knows this world's ins and outs. It is always changing. This is why we always had to change the style, appearance, or ideas of our YouTube videos over the course of seven years. They may look very similar but there are definitely changes.

Also, be open to looking at things in a different way.

At least in my world of magic, it really needs an update and this was a way that was very successful for me to try a new angle on old ideas that seemed tired.

If you want to get into content creation, the cool thing is, that it really doesn’t cost much nowadays. You can use your phone's camera, an app for editing, and make a YouTube channel or whatever platform your heart desires. As I’ve said, they don't cost anything to make one.

How did you finally commit to X platform rather than your regular day job?

I have always had three to five different things or projects going at the same time. That way, if one dries up or two, then you’d never get stranded. I learned that from my Mom and Dad about investing, “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket”. So we jumped on YouTube as it was one of the first to be monetized and we are still on it. My regular job was being a full time magician from the age of 19, so this was just another branch of my brand and entertainment portfolio. It helps my brand exposure as I am on various platforms that attract various ages, genres, and countries.

Tell us the biggest obstacles you have experienced in your content creation journey. And how did you bounce back?

We’d run into copyright claims but our content was always original. There were also music copyright claims but we used all public domain cleared music so we’d have to get cleared when we weren’t in the wrong to begin with.

Sometimes, as I did cop pranks and if there were issues with police on the news or etc., you could see ‘they’ dumb down my reach for my videos or channel. But the key is to keep rocking and rolling with the punches as it all helps build your brand. 

Tell us your best milestones in being a content creator.

My best milestone was hitting 10,000 subscribers on YouTube on our new and original content channel. Then we broke 50,000 subscribers then 100,000. That’s where we threw a huge party here in Las Vegas at Planet Hollywood with a red carpet and a cool silver plaque that YouTube gave us. Then our next was when we hit 1 million subscribers and received our gold plaque and we had another party. It’s important to celebrate all your little wins as we don’t have or didn’t get degrees in this world. We just get views and hopefully, money.

What are your marketing strategies to grow your brand?

My strategies were always to be consistent, and be true to my brand. Also, it is important to consider what your fans/audience are there for, and why they started following you in the first place. Have a distinctive look and appearance so people know you are YOU. Listen to your followers or subscribers as they are the ones that keep your views up.

How do you handle brand deals and sponsorships? 

We have an agency that we love - Studio 71, that deals with our brand deals and partnerships. If the brand feels like it fits our style, we will take it on. Brand deals are a great way to make that extra bonus money on top of your regular views money.

What is your monthly earning from content creation? 

I don’t really talk about how much I currently make but in this business, you can make from $2000.00 a month to well over $250,000.00 a month. It’s pretty hard to believe but it’s all about being true to your brand and loving what you do. Create good things that people like to watch and you will be rewarded well, but it will not happen overnight. Anything successful takes years and years and you really have to dedicate long hours to your craft. So make sure you LOVE what you are doing and don’t give up, as giving up is the easy way out! Now get out there and stop talking about it and just do it!

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