From Vine (rest in peace) to Instagram to YouTube to Facebook to Snapchat, you’ve probably seen Piques in various viral videos. Born and raised in Woodbridge, Ontario, Canada, full name Jon Paul Piques, he was not always known as Piques. Before cultivating over 3 billion combined views and over 11 million combined followers, Piques was a pro-soccer player. From 2004 to 2008, Piques was playing for European teams Sporting Clube de Portugal and S.C Braga, as well as Canadian team Montreal Impact. When he decided to change career paths, he went to Humber College in Toronto and majored in marketing and sales. After college, he worked as a business insurance agent and dabbled in fun social media driven videos on the side. He started with Vine, as he documented his day as an insurance agent. His first co-star, his cat Beja, played a major role in his content, gaining views from the likes of The Ellen Show. He posted his first Vine on April 12, 2013 and has since then got over 3 million followers and almost 2 billion views on that app alone.
You could see why he helped fellow Vine star Marcus Johns organize that secret meeting that changed the fate of Vine forever. They and their peers had noticed a drastic drop with engagement on the app. Feeling like he owed his fame to the platform, he was more than willing to turn it around. However, by the time the meeting took place, a lot of the top Vine stars had already begun to flutter their social wings to other social platforms. Piques said “we had told them how critical it was to implement these things right away. They never made changes, or when they did it was too late.” When a group proposal developed during these meetings was rejected by the app, Viners stopped creating content and moved onto other platforms. Ultimately, Vine was shut down by its parent company, Twitter on January 17, 2017 and replaced it with Vine camera which is just the app without the social network attached.
Piques was never worried with what was next – his content has that internet longevity. By turning a hobby into a career, he knew that his influence was relevant and sustaining. Content is stuff that just happens to him in his everyday life but with a funny twist. His brain automatically goes there and evidently, it works. Being one of Facebook’s top content creator, the social media platform has become his favourite platform to create content for. There are hardly any limits to the platform when it comes to creating videos for it and now the love gets even stronger as Facebook has begun monetizing videos for its creators. His favourite video is a Vine compliation he put together, which got him over 120 million views within four days and over 1 million followers in one week on Facebook. Now, he has over 8 million followers and posts consistently. His ability to transform the content for Instagram for his 1.7 million followers there has them hooked. Piques has also worked with Playboy, The Simpsons’ director David Silverman, T-Mobile, Anheuser-Busch and TGI Fridays.
His advice for anyone who wants to work in this industry is “try to be themselves at first and then once they create an audience then they can adapt into other things.”