Internet fame must be a strange experience. Online celebrities like Brent Rivera and Cameron Dallas have tons of social media followers, instant feedback and probably get recognized, but don't exactly have to worry about paparazzi and such like traditional celebrities. And since most of these Internet celebrities are teenagers, how exactly are they supposed to handle this new, undefined type of fame? Just ask Brandon Calvillo.
A 19-year-old known for his Vines, Brandon doesn't takes his fame lightly in the sense that he can't laugh about it, but is serious when it comes to business. Brandon has turned his large Vine following into something profitable, and maybe even a career.
First, the basics. On Vine, the short video-sharing website where his popularity began, Brandon has over two million followers. On Twitter he breaks 52,000, on Instagram almost 100,000 and though his YouTube channel mainly consists of compilations of Vines, it has over 8,000 subscribers of its own.
Why are all of these people following Brandon across social media platforms? It's simple, his Vines are funny. Brandon's short videos are usually relatable, many feature popular songs and he even has recurring themes. In many videos, often with another Vine star, Brandon mocks teenaged girls and these videos are insanely popular. Check out the holiday-themed one below.
Since it was posted on Dec. 24, that Vine has gotten over 174,000 likes, 117,000 revines and 6,000 comments. The Vine below, just a quick joke using a Rihanna song, is even more popular.
With over 200,000 likes and 138,000 revines, Brandon and his videos are clearly extremely popular. Really, Brandon is famous on Vine, and unlike some of the other celebrities found in these six-second bursts, he's able to poke fun at the whole concept. The Vine below, which has gained over 96,000 likes in 11 days, mocks the comments often found on the site.
On his Twitter, Brandon shows that he is truly self-aware with tweets like these.
For a 19-year-old with an iPhone, Brandon is doing pretty well for himself. He's actually figured out how to turn this popularity into something resembling a career, thanks to sponsorships. See, some companies have realized the advertising potential of Vine, it's a short video clip meant to be spread online—perfect for advertising, especially to a younger demographic.
However since most teenagers don't want to follow random brands on Vine, the companies have partnered with popular users to make videos. Companies like MTV and users like Brandon.
Ad Age estimated that sponsored Vines like that could earn their stars between $1,000 and $10,000 per video. That's an extremely impressive amount when you consider that the time limit is six seconds. So if you see more sponsored content from Brandon and other Vine celebrities like him, know that they've managed to turn their hobby into a lucrative career that most people would be envious of.
But don't worry, at the end of the day, Brandon never lets it get to his head because he knows who he really is.