By Bianca Garcia
Pulse Staff Reporter
Not all Palo Alto college students are engaging in a typical part-time job. Some are aspiring young entrepreneurs thinking creatively to make a name for themselves.
Tim Sanchez-Vega, an 18-year-old YouTube vlogger (@LegitLooksForLife), began his YouTube career at the age of 11, re-interpreting movie scenes while a friend recorded with a “cheap” $50 video camera. He now has more than 53,000 subscribers and counting.
YouTube is a platform where people have the ability to display their talents. It is the second largest search engine and the third most visited website worldwide, reaching 1 billion visitors each month.
“I enjoy his content because it’s fun to watch someone you know on a personal level be successful in what they love to do,” said Diego Muñoz, 20, longtime friend and church member. “Tim loves to reach out to his viewers despite what the YouTube comments say. . . he never seems shaken by it, and that’s really admirable.”
Sanchez-Vega separates himself from the average YouTuber by staying away from profanity in his videos, focusing on his love for gaming, thrifting, style, sneakers and most importantly, God.
“You can find crazy steals and discounted items that you would normally find in retail stores with big sale prices,” said Sanchez-Vega, a sophomore Business Marketing major. “I would characterize myself as a style influencer who does shoe reviews and vlogs of my life.”
He gains his sense of style from famous influential YouTubers: Tim Chantarangsu (@TimothyDeLaGhetto), Jacob J. Keller (@AlwaysFreshApparel), and Jesse Wellens (@BFvsGF, @PrankvsPrank), who all successfully made a name for themselves. He sees YouTube as a stepping-stone to his future career.
“I plan to keep on . . . growing the subscriber count and possibly use that as a step into getting into some type of fashion company (Nike, Adidas, street wear companies),” said Sanchez-Vega. “I just want to spread the gospel of Jesus Christ . . . make a street wear clothing line and a Christian clothing line that will bring all the glory to God.”
Many YouTubers have created an empire for themselves, some grossing over $12 million a year before taxes. They often get sponsored by successful outside sources, allowing them to grow their brand. From book deals to movies, the possibilities are endless. According to YouTube’s About Us page, people watching YouTube per day is up 40 percent since March 2014.
“I’d say I gain an average of more than 100 followers a day,” said Sanchez-Vega. “Reaching a million subscribers is one of my life goals. It all depends on how much publicity and social media attention I get.”
He doesn’t stop at the making of YouTube videos. Apart from YouTube, he also sells unique thrift store finds and rare sneakers on Big Cartel (www.legitlooksforlife.bigcartel.com).
Thrifting allows room to adjust the price on items to make a profit. Bargain shops also have an evolving selection of clothing, which you can expect to be completely different from anything at your local mall.
“Don’t stop. Keep going, and keep improving every day. Do your research of what’s trending,” said Sanchez-Vega, who uploads new content to his channel twice a week.
Checking what is trending on YouTube is one of the most reliable ways of establishing what content is going to be popular, which ultimately leads to more views.
“Even if you’re from the South Side, you can make it. Give your all, and you can become someone,” said Sanchez-Vega.
His personable approach and determination to succeed doesn’t go unnoticed.
“I really respect his drive, his dedication. He comes across as the type of person that everyone would like,” said Peter Hernandez, Biology professor and faculty advisor of Destino, a Hispanic Christian student organization. “[Tim] always has a huge smile on his face; he exudes a very upbeat personality.”
The successful YouTuber plans on transferring to Texas State University and growing his sneaker business while in college.
“After I graduate, I hope to apply to either a footwear or clothing company to do marketing for them,” said Sanchez-Vega. “Which will eventually lead me to opening up my own clothing boutique or . . . clothing line in the future.”
Big Cartel: www.legitlooksforlife.bigcartel.com