How to Get Rich Sort of Quick While Really Trying

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
how to get rich sort of quick while really trying

Always dreamed of becoming a YouTube sensation? Wish you could get millions of clicks and finance your life from it?

That dream is a reality for Parker Nirenstein, a 21-year-old automotive engineering student at the University of Michigan and star of YouTube’s Vehicle Virgins channel.

Young, tech-savvy entrepreneurs always draw a crowd, and the BBC is the latest to take notice of this creator of viral car videos. Filmed on his own time, featuring supercars one day or simple used car advice the next, the channel sometimes generates nearly $1,000 of revenue a day.

Not bad for a venture that started as a fun hobby, but don’t think goofing off with your iPhone will net you that kind of coin. Nirenstein employs multiple cameras, including a GoPro, to film his videos, and his growing online clout is making it easier to drive (and own) vehicles that are normally out of reach for most 21-year-olds.

Last year, revenue reached a point where Nirenstein could purchase his dream vehicle — a yellow 2004 Lamborghini Gallardo. The video where he describes the purchase now has over one million views.

His secret? Understanding the murky dynamic that makes online videos go viral. And putting in 40 hours of work per week on it, even while attending school or interning at Toyota or Ford. If you don’t put in the time, you won’t get the needed frequency and consistency out of your uploads.

“It wasn’t like I made an app and then got lucky and it exploded,” Nirenstein told the BBC. “It’s like, no, this took two and a half years of producing videos, and it just naturally started gaining more and more traffic. Hard work pays off.”

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7 of 72 comments
  • Mattfarah Mattfarah on Apr 22, 2016

    $1,000 a day? That is some Bull. Shit. I make videos for a living. This guy has half the subscribers I have, and half the total video views I have. He does not make that. Sure, he makes enough to buy an 04 Gallardo (assuming $80k value) if he has no other expenses, but the math simply does not add up on that. This kid makes no more than $80-90k a year off YouTube after taxes.

    • Golfnotgolf Golfnotgolf on Apr 22, 2016

      It is too bad that the writer of this article has never listened to any of your podcasts, Matt. He might have at least thought twice before putting up all of this secondhand information.

  • Golfnotgolf Golfnotgolf on Apr 22, 2016

    I am pretty sure this will be the last Steph Willems article I ever read. He has written several pieces here that are just complete rubbish. Also, people like this Vehicle Virgins guy are why Matt Farah has to explain weekly why Youtube is not bringing in millions for him. Low miles, early Gallardos are $90k cars any day of the week. That should have been a hint to Willems that $1k a day is likely a lie.

  • Golden2husky Golden2husky on Apr 22, 2016

    $1,000 a day - give or take? Seems like a lot. There used to be a guy in Canada called Davidsfarm and once he became established, his income exploded. His secret was that he developed a very intense, loyal following. Content was jumping and wrecking cars, redneck ingenuity, and a slobbish lifestyle. He became the number one YouTuber in Canada. Those loyal fans visited his "farm" and clicked away at the ads. He would show checks online from YouTube in excess of $10K US a month. Success has its drawbacks as his past caught up with him. Anyone interested can read a bit about it on Encyclopedia Dramatica. Old videos of his fun still can be found, though the haters got him booted off of YouTube. All that said, it seems that Mr. Lambo has nowhere near the traffic, so his claims seem rather optimistic.

    • Ajla Ajla on Apr 22, 2016

      "On Encyclopedia Dramatica" Hmmmm, sounds interesting. Let me just look up that site on my work computer...

  • Psarhjinian Psarhjinian on Apr 22, 2016

    Maybe this is just me, but I can't _stand_ video reviews, news segments and how-tos: I'd rather read about it. If I need help, I'll take well-lit and labelled photos over shakeycam and wind-mic. And yes, I realize this makes me old.

    • JimZ JimZ on Apr 22, 2016

      video reviews (especially of things like cars) can be helpful as an adjunct to a written article, kind of the way Alex Dykes does it. Some things are better shown than explained.