Paris Hilton broke on to the scene in 2013, after the premier of The Simple Life. It was the first reality show of its kind. After a successful, five-year run she needed to figure out what to do next.
Remember, this is 2017. There weren’t other influencers to follow. Actually there weren’t any influencers at all.
She had to figure it out all by herself.
Hilton said, “Even before there was social media, I was an influencer before there was a name for it. I’m the OG and the creator of all this.
I always had a plan and my plan was right. People were saying that I was just famous for being famous but now that’s literally a whole new genre of celebrity. Now you see people doing the exact same thing. So, I think it’s amazing that you’re able to build your fame off of just being yourself.”
And she has built quite an empire by doing just that: 45 branded stores and 19 different product lines that have generated over four billion dollars in revenue.
That makes sense. Paris Hilton should have her own perfume or her own doll. Where her story gets interesting is that she didn’t just stop there. She kept pushing forward and has always been at the forefront of new technology.
She said, “I am a huge undercover nerd. I may not look like it on the outside but inside I am. I’ve always been obsessed with technology, the future, video games, art, crypto, etc.”
Hilton got into crypto in 2016 after she had lunch with the founder of Ethereum. She started buying Ethereum and Bitcoin, and while she won’t reveal how much money she invested, she would have made a substantial amount of money if she held onto it.
In 2016, one Bitcoin was worth roughly $1,000, while one Ethereum was worth around $10. Today Bitcoin is trading at $32,061 and Ethereum is $1,960.
During the pandemic, Paris started spending a lot of time on the Clubhouse app. She would stay on there for hours connecting with some of the most brilliant people in the NFT space.
I interviewed some of the biggest NFT insiders in the world, a couple of months ago, and they all kept mentioning Paris Hilton. I thought that was odd because, on paper, she has absolutely nothing in common with the male dominated, techie, NFT space.
But everyone that I spoke to had great things to say about her: How she supports so many new artists (especially women), how smart she is and how she brings a new audience into the NFT world.
And don’t just take their word for it. She was recently named the 7th most influential person in NFTs by Money.
Hilton said, “In 2019, I got approached by Cryptograph because the Australia fires were happening and they wanted to raise money. So, I got an iPad and drew my cat and called it Crypto Kitten and we sold it for the charity. And then I was like, ‘Wow. This is amazing! A digital piece of art could raise all of these funds.’ And this was before the whole NFT craze.
And I was on Clubhouse a lot during the pandemic. I was meeting all the leaders in the space and became friends with people, like Whale Shark, and just all of these brilliant people. The space is incredible! I’ve met so many friends and I love how everyone is so supportive of each other. Everyone really lifts each other up. It’s so different from Hollywood.”
She’s very passionate about supporting women artists in the NFT space.
Hilton said, “I wanted to use my voice, and my platform, to uplift these female artists. I’ve done so many different projects uplifting them, like The Seven Foundation. I’ve done an all-female artist art show called Empowered By Paris and that was incredible.”
Does Paris have any advice for people who want to get started with NFTs?
She said, “I recommend that they start by going to Origin Protocall. I love working with them. They are an incredible platform and they aways have amazing artists with the sickest drops. And it’s really important, when buying NFTs, to do your research because you really want to invest in projects that you believe in.”
Hilton also has her sights on the Metaverse.
She said, “I have been thinking about the Metaverse, and planning for this, for a long time; before there even was a word for it. Back in 2018, when I was shooting my documentary, American Meme, I created this whole place where people could come and watch me DJ and be their own avatars. I was mapping myself out and building this whole world but the technology just wasn’t there yet. Now it is.
We launched Paris World inside of Roblox. I wanted to really bring in “real life” experiences. I get to do all these really incredible things but not everyone gets to go to Neon Carnival or they don’t get to go to New York Fashion Week. So, I just bring everything that I’m doing, in real life, to the Metaverse.
We had 400,000 people come to Neon Carnival (in Paris World) and in real life I think there were 10,000 people there. On New Year’s Eve we were in the Maldives, and I was just DJing in my suite, and watching all the kids have the best time. I was like, ‘Wow this is so cool!’
I hope one day, when I have a daughter, she’ll only want to be partying in the Metaverse: safe and at home. I love how I used to be ‘Queen of the Clubs’ and now I’m the. ‘Queen of the Metaverse.’
In addition to all of this, she also recently has launched her own media company: 11:11 Media.
Hilton said, “It’s an integrated, modern, media company. We do everything from digital, television, audio, products, licensing, NFTs, Metaverse, etc. We do it all. Since I’m the one who is the blueprint, and wrote the whole playbook on the creator economy, I thought the best next step was to build a creator focused media company.
After being in the industry for the past two decades, and learning everything and understanding the creator economy, I just wanted people to have a place where they could launch their own businesses, products and content and whatever they like.”
And regular people actually have the chance to work with her at 11:11 Media. This is very rare in the space. Jobs at companies similar to this never come up on job boards. They’re given to industry insiders. But Paris is running her company differently.
She partnered with ZipRecruiter to help meet 11:11’s growing needs to bring on talented people to join the team and to cast a wide net. To kick off the partnership, 11:11 and ZipRecruiter are launching a sweepstakesbeginning today, where someone can win a mentorship program with Paris and members of her company.
In additional to everything she has going on in her business life, Hilton is also deeply passionate about giving back.
She’s working on school reform in 50 states and was recently in Washington DC to discuss new legislation.
Hilton said, “I’m involved in so many things right now but the thing that I’m most passionate about is the advocacy work that I’m doing. I’ve already changed laws in seven states because when I was a teenager, I went to a school called Provo Canyon School, and others like it, where they were just abusive on a daily basis: Emotionally, physically, verbally, psychologically. And it’s still happening today. We’re now taking it to a federal level so that in all 50 states this will be illegal.”
Crypto, NFTs, Metaverse…What’s next for Paris? Whatever it is, I’m going to pay attention because she’s been right about everything so far.