Today I’m interviewing Andrew Schulz. A comedian, writer, and actor, Andrew has collaborated on several TV pilots, including The Rewind, The Blog Report, and American Depravity. He wrote and performed in the web-series Rise of the Radio Show, and acted in Strangers in the Snow, a short film awarded best romantic comedy at the 2011 Mountain Film Festival. Most recently, Andrew helped usher in the new year as a panelist on MTV’s New Year’s Eve Bash, and he’s a regular panelist on Music Choice’s hit TV show Certified.
1. How are you using the internet / social media to promote your career?
Besides being on stage, the internet is the main way I interact with fans, friends and bookers. I post about shows and promote shows online. I don’t know how I’d be able to do it without the internet. I have a good website, I have a twitter account, Facebook and keep in touch with everyone there. I also have a Facebook fan page, but I don’t focus my energy there, right now. I focus on the regular page because I feel I can interact closer with the people who are interested in seeing me. It’s easier to say thank you for coming out to the shower personally. There comes a time when you need a fan page, which is when you can’t say thank you to everyone.
2. Have you noticed the payoff yet?
Yeah it’s been great. I can’t compare it, but it’s easier to book and promote. When I did the Canada tour, people came to the tour because they saw clips on the internet. And people have messaged me, “Hey I saw your clip, when are you coming to Ohio?” and they’ll even reach out to clubs like, “Hey when is this guy coming here?” I’ve benefitted greatly from other people posting my stuff.
3. You tweet like 20-30 times a day. Are you one of those comics that actually enjoys it or are you that bored?
I like it. I wouldn’t do it if I didn’t like it or didn’t want to say it. If I have something funny to say and there’s nobody around for me to say it to, I just throw it on twitter. It’s like that friend that’s always there. And I imagine all my twitter followers laugh at it.
4. What do you think about posting videos of your show online?
I think it’s good. You should put up a few videos. I just throw up a few videos that showcase what I do. I have a couple videos of me doing crowd work, a couple where I’m doing jokes, letting you know I can write a joke, then another video is persona heavy. You need to be strategic with it because almost no stand up clip is going viral. Unless it’s a video of you and a heckler. People don’t make things go viral that are intentional. Standup humor is intentional. I thought this was funny, I said it and you laughed. What’s viral is unintentional humor: fat people doing regular things and us laughing because they’re trying to be normal like us and go jogging or someone hitting a nail and it going awry. There’s ego attached to sharing, you share a video because you found funny in it. If I share a stand up clip, even if my friend sees it, he knows that the comic thought it was funny and he gives all the credit to the comic. If I share a video of a kid doing a stupid dance, then I get the credit for showing it to my friend because my friend goes, “Hey, you’re so funny for thinking this is funny”. Stand up clips are still good to put up there just to showcase what you can do. Then again, maybe one good joke, some people made it based off of one good joke, like Angelah Johson’s nail salon clip. For whatever reason, that resonated and people shared the shit out of it.
5. Do you notice you get more fans from standard TV appearances or from online presence?
I would say the majority of my fans are from live shows. If we’re comparing media, I’d say I get more from MTV or Music Choice because you’re touching millions of people. I’ve gotten lots of twitter fans from retweets, but it really depends on the medium. The great thing about the internet is that anyone who sees you on the internet will be internet savvy and follow you on the other things that you have on the internet. They can go from your Youtube to your twitter and then Facebook friend you. Someone who sees you on TV is less willing to breakout their computer or phone and search for you.
6. How do you think digital tools will change comedy?
I think it’s empowering. It puts the power in the artist’s hands. If you have a fan base, you can say “fuck you” to everybody. There’s certain comics like Doug Stanhope who can tweet “I’m gonna be here” and 300 of his fans will show up, and then you don’t need to kiss anyone’s ass. No bookers or Hollywood. The only people whose ass you gotta kiss is Mark Zuckerberg and Twitter because without them, you’re fucked. But with them you have the ability to get in touch with your fans and pack out shows and make a living. Before that, you had to be really nice to the venue and promotional company. People used to come out for the venue, now they come out for the comic.
7. How much information do you tend to share on the social networks?
I’ll share what I had for breakfast if I had diarrhea because of it. There has to be something funny or passionate attached to my tweet. Anybody who’s gonna be on twitter or Facebook has a grandiose idea of themselves. You have to if you think people care about you in the moment, and I have that, but I at least know that people shouldn’t care what I had for breakfast. If I have a scrambled egg and I farted later and it smelled just like that scrambled egg, then maybe you need to know that. I post if it evokes a reaction. Or if I’m watching TV and wanna make fun of it and nobody is there, then I can post. Like I remember watching the Miami Heat game alone, and I noticed that Big Baby looks just like one of the monsters from Space Jam, and it would’ve been a great thing to say with my friends, but I was alone like a loser, so instead I got to working my thumbs and getting it on twitter. And all for one measly retreat from a friend of mine! It sucks how much that little red number means to me when I go check my twitter.
8. What’s your weirdest online experience involving your comedy career?
I’ve met girls and we’ve hung out. The other night I was with a girl who saw me at a show randomly, she lived in Miami and we talked randomly on the internet for a few months, then we ended up fucking, thank you Mark Zuckerberg. Everybody owes Mark Zuckerberg 10% of their pussy in the past five years. People talk about how many relationships he’s broken up, think about how much extra vagina you’ve gotten because of Facebook. Or how many girls you knew not to get involved with because you saw their beach photos and saw their weird mole that you wouldn’t have otherwise known about until after you got emotionally invested.
9. You just had a Canada Tour, how’d you promote it online? Which ways were most effective?
I had my website and people would check the info there. I also had ticket links on Facebook. People who saw me could see me at other shows. People who liked me promoted my future shows to their friends, it was great. The whole community came together and other comics supported. You can really start a movement quickly now. Back in the day, it was hard to get people together. You had to really care about a cause. The internet has made it really easy to pretend to give a fuck. You can really seem like a good person just based on the shit you like. For example, I can like saving starving kids in Africa, I’m not gonna give money or time, but I’ll click “like”, whatever that does for them, and hopefully it’s a good thing.