Last September, Meghan McCarthy was just a 21-year-old Auburn student with a thousand followers on Vine. This September, she’s a 22-year-old Auburn grad with more than 1.5 million followers on Vine who’s about to move to California on money she made from going to movies and drinking Coke and just generally being herself.Which is to say that Meghan McCarthy is a professional Viner. And she’s pretty much at the top of her field.
“I’m 97,” says McCarthy, speaking of her rank, in terms of the number of followers, among the 50 or 60 or however many million registered users Vine has now (when McCarthy first signed up, in August 2013, she was one of 40 million). “But out of girls, I’m in the top 20, and if you don’t count the girls in front of me who are already famous for other stuff, like Kylie Jenner and Ellen Degeneres, I’m probably the 13th or 14th biggest girl Viner. It’s somewhere around there.”
Last night, the high-pitched voiced hotshot with was included in a Nightline segment on the growing number of Vine celebrities who make a living off their six-second star power.
Companies like Oral B and most recently even Coca-Cola have contracted with McCarthy for sponsored Vines, which essentially serve as super short, and comparatively cheap, commercials that loops a brand in product-placement perpetuity.
“That (the Coke gig) was the coolest,” McCarthy says. “They wanted to promote their Share a Coke campaign. They connected with a few different Viners and I got hired to make a Vine for them.”
In six seconds, McCarthy shares a Coke with a nerd, a pirate, and a cat, all played by her. In two months time, the Vine has been been viewed—or looped—more than two million times.
She’s even making money from movies—not by starring in them or anything (yet), just going to them.
“It’s pretty crazy, I get paid to go places, just to go to events, like movie premieres,” McCarthy says. “I get hired to go to movie screenings”—this summer it was Into The Storm and If I Stay—and just post about it on social media.”
While still in Auburn, McCarthy says a directed studies professor told her to get an attorney to help navigate the business deals beginning to pour in. She recently took the advice to heart. McCarthy just signed with a YouTube management company, and she’s in the process of signing with a California voice talent agency. She’s moving to Los Angeles this week.
Vine is “not something I plan on doing forever,” McCarthy told us back in March.
Of course, that was when she just had a million followers.
video: Jeff Poor
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