Saturday Dec 03, 2022
TikTok star Daniel Macdonald is doing what he does for a living: approaching the drivers of supercars and asking them, "What do you do for a living?" on a prominent section of Rodeo Drive, bordered by Cartier and Bulgari.
The 25-year-old has become a viral success thanks to a simple and straightforward idea and the responses to the question "what do you for a living" has garnered, including "nothing," "cannabis distributor," "professional cuddler," "stunt double," "poker player," and "ladybug breeder."
In the two years since publishing his first automobile video on social media, he has racked up more than 21 million followers across his five primary social media accounts, where he goes by Daniel Mac.
The majority of Macdonald's clips feature unidentified people who are extravagantly wealthy or who act like they are. But he's also gotten CEOs, race car drivers, and celebs like Ranveer Singh, Shaquille O'Neal, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Jay Leno, and Wiz Khalifa.
He even asked about President Joe Biden's profession in September (in a staged stunt to promote electric cars); a subsequent video received more than five million views and resulted in the firing of a senior Apple executive for his impolite response.
A basic, repeated hook can be all it takes to earn mega-fame in the influencer world, which highlights the strange nature of the phenomenon. The improbable success has made Macdonald as wealthy as many of the drivers he records, a report by Los Angeles Times said.
The Tucson native was driving a 2011 Chevrolet Impala and had just received a finance degree from the University of Arizona when Macdonald started asking car owners what they did for a career.
According to the LA Times report, he relocated to Dallas and began his training with Charles Schwab as a financial adviser, earning a $45,000 basic salary annually. Despite not being a big fan of automobiles, he was impressed by the Ferraris he would see in his new city and wondered how their owners could afford such extravagance.
He moved last year after finding himself constantly wanting to fly to Los Angeles to film new content and is now a millionaire living in Hollywood. Macdonald earns up to $100,000 per month from his lucrative endorsement arrangements with major brands like Gillette, Lenovo, and other products that he films on his iPhone 14. He resigned from Charles Schwab, joined CAA, and purchased a used 2019 Tesla Model 3.
“It wasn’t a situation where I was dying to leave my job,” he told the outlet. “But I eventually started making more money doing TikTok and I was like, I’m 23 at the time, I’ve gotta take this opportunity while I’m young because I’ll be regretting it if I don’t. My family was mortified.”
Blake Thompson, his 25-year-old producer, who is with him, assists in determining which approaching vehicles are worthy of pursuit.
Macdonald has started to gain widespread recognition as a result of his brand endorsements and a recent spate of newsworthy videos. As soon as people realise the real Daniel Mac is filming on the corner, the scene from Rodeo quickly develops into a spectacle as fans gather around.
Macdonald didn't aim to be a top influencer and didn't anticipate his videos to go viral right away. He was one of four kids raised in an upper-middle-class family; his father was a doctor and his mother a nurse practitioner.
Macdonald isn't particularly wealthy, at least not yet, but he recently defied his own advice by spending a lot of money on a $150,000 Porsche GT4. He claims that this was done in part as a result of people telling him to "come on, you need to get a nicer car" when he showed up to car meets in his Chevy.
“So I got a Tesla, which I love, and then I ordered a Porsche,” he says. “It’s like an investment for myself because as the car guy, I need a car to show off. It’s kind of ridiculous.”