Jason Mendez is on his way to social media stardom


Jason Mendez is a social star by every definition. Not only does the young Viner have almost 2 million followers on Vine, 700,000 fans on Facebook, and over 200,000 followers on Instagram, but his Vine videos along have garnered over 1 billion loops in total. Mendez is proving that although young, he's ambitious and ready for social media domination.

So if you haven't heard of the Internet sensation yet, consider a change. We got to sit down with Mendez exclusively at this year's SXSW festival, where we picked his brain on his social media career, his influences and more! Check out the full interview below.

And for more SXSW coverage, head over to Kanvas for insider videos, gifs, and more from this year's festivities!

When did you know social media would be a huge part of your career?
It would probably be two years ago. Me and my friends were doing it just for fun then, but slowly and surely we got offers for deals. We thought, "Dang, if we keep doing this, the deals will get bigger and bigger!"

Was there ever a video that you can pinpoint as the turning point in your career?
There was a video I did stubbing my toe -- because everyone stubs their toe. So it was really relatable and blew up.What are your passions outside social media?
I was a producer so I used to make beats before this. Me and my friend Max are thinking of getting back into that because now that we have a following for our videos, we thought why shouldn't we showcase our other talents to our followers? I also have a background in graphic design and took classes for that. I also edit a lot my videos and my friends videos too and that was all self-taught.

%vine-url="https://vine.co/v/O20YzALFvvY"% What or who inspires you when you make videos?
The first person that comes to mind is like Fresh Prince or Will Smith. But I don't want to really follow any one person because I want to be myself in these videos of course, especially since they mostly focus on relatable things that happens to everybody.

How long do the videos take you to make from start to finish?
For Vines and stuff, sometimes it takes one shoot so really 6 seconds if there's no editing. But to shoot a 6-second video will take thirty minutes and then another thirty minutes to edit everything. So all together, probably an hour. But for Facebook videos, it obviously takes a lot longer to shoot and edit, so that whole process is probably like an hour and 45 minutes.

What do you think the key to success is in the social media world?
Just being yourself and being authentic. Even if it's an idea that somebody else thought of, just make it different in your own way.


How do you make connections and collaborate with other social stars?
You really just have to be yourself and if people like you, they will recruite you in a way. But it's all about having a team, everything falls into place after that.

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Originally published