“How do I decide on my look and make-up? I don't care, I'll do whatever comes. I go to work. I look terrible in some photos with clients, I have to work. NewMartina speaks, 25 years old, 7 million and 300,000 followers on TikTok and ten hours a day behind the counter of the family store in Naples, six days a week: “I'm always there,” she assures, “the people.” Come for me, they want the application from me.”
Application of what?
“Movies on smartphone screens.”
It “martinizes” them. He also “martinized” Tottis. It is the secret of his success. Does it help us understand?
«I'll give you the answer from someone who has dealt with the NewMartina phenomenon: the followers appreciate my spontaneity, I think about the customer in front of me, at the beginning I even forgot that I was recording a video. Then there are the gestures I make, the speed at which I apply the slides and covers. And the ASMR.”
“These are the videos where I'm silent and you only hear the sound of what I'm doing: for example, my nails tapping on the screen.” People relax. The first video I made quietly got almost half a billion views.
How long did it take you to reach these numbers?
«I started in September 2022 with a profile that I already had and used sporadically. In January I already had 100,000 followers, but they blocked my profile and I lost everything. I open another one and in two days I'm back to 100,000. After a month it's one million, after a week and a half it's three million. In eight months I reached six million. Everything very quickly too.”
What did this mean for your family’s store?
“It changed everything: we went from a Friday with 30, 50 people at most, to a Saturday with a queue outside.” From one day to the next, my father gave up selling telephone and general electronics products, swept everything away and focused on accessories and films. And we founded our own brand: it’s called Armov.”
His brother Carlo is behind him. Legs crossed and cell phone in hand. He only seems uninterested in the conversation when he answers the question about the store's sales growth.
“We plan to end 2023 with a seven-figure amount.”
She also makes money from TikTok, shall we ask her again?
“I don't advertise, TikTok pays you per views and I donate everything to charity.” In July I made a donation to children undergoing oncology treatment at Pausilipon in Naples. It is a topic that is very close to my heart.”
What numbers are we talking about?
“I don’t even see him.” And Carlo: “About two thousand euros a month.”
She didn't let it bother her and continued to work as before, she said.
â€œMy family always taught me the value of work. Many girls in my position would have done it differently; there are those who, like half of my followers, think they have arrived and are famous. I could get sponsors and make a living, but I want to work. I just want to have my family around me. Of course I’m also an influencer: And that’s a job too, it’s stressful, tiring, but satisfying.”
The TikTok algorithm demands a lot from you. Have you ever wondered what you would do if it were all over?
“Yes, and I know the more time goes by the harder it gets, but I'm always looking for ways to diversify. There are already days when videos work less. I feel bad, but they (turns around, looks at Carlo, ed.) calm me down and tell me that the world is big and there are still a lot of people who don't know me and who they can reach out to. That calms me. And we will open more stores, who knows, maybe even abroad.”
They recently opened in Bologna. Thanks to his success on TikTok, his compatriot Donato De Caprio has brought his sandwiches to Milan: will he follow him?
“If we find the right place: in Naples I’m close to the central station, even in Milan I want to be in the center.”
Like Steve Jobs!
For the Apple Store in Milan he only wanted the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele, then Apple opened in the Piazza del Liberty. Back to you: the first video?
“I asked followers, ‘What do you think NewMartina is called?’ Because Martina isn’t my name, but since that’s the name of the store and I was the only female presence, they called me Martina. And I'm very happy: the public remains separate from the private. I never said my real name.
Excuse me, isn't your name Carmen Fiorito?
“I never confirmed it” (he smiles).
What would you have done if social media success hadn't happened?
“I would have continued working with my father anyway. My priority used to be dancing, but I put it aside because dancers don't get paid very well. Then I finished my studies in aesthetics, but I don't like it. I didn’t finish high school and I’m ashamed to say it: I regret not studying, I don’t want the children who follow me to make my mistake.”
“There aren't any, I like romantic films.” Maybe Titanic is the only one that still touches me emotionally. But I look at a little bit of everything.
“I read little, I admit that. I have no time. Or I start reading and then watch a film on my smartphone.”
Politics? Did you vote in the last elections?
“Who was there? I do not remember. Carlo: “Either the 5 stars or Meloni”. You: “So Meloni, but I don’t agree with a lot of things.”
Who inspires you?
“The Kardashians. They are the most powerful family in the world on a social level and no one knows what they really do. Kim says it too: “What can I do? I don't know, but I have many talents. And she is Kim, she commands, she decides, and even 20 years after her success, she continues to grow, study and do many things. For me he is a role model.”
«Become a strong woman who doesn't need anyone, independent. And I want to be an inspiration to many children: I know that it is not easy to find the strength to fight for what you want. It's not about becoming an influencer or working a desk job, and it shouldn't be: you have to do what you want. And the goal is not the work itself, but the results you achieve. Let's be honest: my dream certainly wasn't to sell phones and play movies. No, zero. I found myself there and started working. It's the results I achieved that made me love my job. The people who come back to the store and say, ‘No one will do it the way you do it,’ see my family happy and content.”