At the age of 14, most people are concerned about starting high school. YouTube star Anthony Quintal—known to his fans as Lohanthony—had to manage hosting his own MTV Web show on top of the pressures of everyday teen life. The network tapped the vlogger to host the latter half of the third season of its Teen Wolf After After Show last fall after it noticed the rambunctious and outspoken teen gabbing about how much he loved the program.
He may be a year older, but Quintal's career hasn't slowed down. The teen, who is represented by Fullscreen, just finished up a deal with Astronauts Wanted and The Chernin Group's SummerBreak, which is sponsored by AT&T. This week, he'll head to Chicago to be a featured talent at social media conference SocialCon, all while preparing for his move to Los Angeles.
Although he's not old enough to drive, the vlogger has been posting his thoughts online since the third grade. Here's what he's learned are the keys to a successful career.
Quintal said the most important part of vlogging is being true to yourself and really promoting things you like, since you may end up working with that brand. Because his audience is mostly teenagers, he always talks about topics that would interest them. He pointed out that it makes it easier for him to work on campaigns, because he just has to be himself.
"Basically I like to see myself as a personality who is just here to make everyone smile and feel good," he said. "I like touching base on what's going on in pop culture and stuff like that, bringing that world into my videos."
The teen posts his videos weekly, which act as a recap of buzzed-about events. Each vignette lasts five to six minutes. Quintal said his favorite subjects include responding to the most talked about topics online, ranging from taking the cinnamon challenge to live vlogging his reaction to a much talked about fight video. One of his top performing videos is a simple nine-second clip in which he calls people out for being "basic bitches," today's slang for acting like you're something special when you're plain boring.
"Those are the best [videos], and they usually end up doing the best," he said.
Keeping an audience engaged means more than picking timely topics. Quintal admits he's always on Twitter, interacting with fans or using his public Snapchat to show pieces of his life. The most effective tool, however, is using his fans' input in his videos.
"It's one thing to tweet them, but putting them in your video and talking to them by answering their questions—just having a little one-on-one with them—is just as important because they feel connected to you," he said. "You have to keep them connected and coming back."