SAN JOSE -- It’s Mario Ferraro’s rookie season in the NHL. And Year 4 of his YouTube career.
“That’s just a hobby of mine,” Ferraro said after a January practice. “Tech, I’ve always been into that sort of thing.”
Most of the Sharks defenseman’s published videos are tech product reviews, produced in spare time from his home or hotel rooms. But make no mistake about the required effort to produce and grow his channel titled “Youngest of Plugs.”
“At the start I was getting no views,” the 21-year-old said. “It’s kind of hard to build stuff when nobody’s watching. But you just have to stick with it. Now I’m getting more views, thanks to Sharks fans too.”
Ferraro does post some hockey-related Q&A videos, but the channel is more focused around headphones, iPad accessories and computer gaming upgrades.
As for who influences Ferraro’s videos, there are definitely some familiar names to be discussed.
“Marques Brownlee and Casey Neistat, and then there’s also Unbox Therapy,” Ferraro said.
“I’ve always been watching [Brownlee] MKBHD for the longest time. I’d say six years now. I saw him when he was around a million [subscribers], now he’s at 10 million. It’s cool to see him grow.”
Ferraro said Brownlee’s journey reminds him of what it’s like to become a pro hockey player.
“When you see his videos at the beginning, versus how they are now,” reflected Ferraro. “A lot of high-quality stuff and it’s just from work ethic and determination.”
Many top-level YouTube stars have top-notch production resources at their disposal. Including cameras and gear that can easily value into five and six figures.
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Conversely, Ferraro currently uses his phone as the camera, and his iPad to edit videos. It’s nothing special, but it gets the job done.
“It’s a work in progress, I’m going to build it as I go,” Ferraro said. “Right now not focused on the equipment I have it’s more about the content and what I put out there. The basis of my videos.”