In 2016, she was actually still in the middle of her apprenticeship as an automotive saleswoman. But then Sophia and her boyfriend started to take photos and videos of car events and their Porsche - for fun. They quickly realized that their snapshots were well received on the Internet and produced increasingly professional content. In the meantime, the 27-year-old has over 60,000 followers on YouTube and over 50,000 followers on Instagram and is now a full-time "influencer" and "full-time YouTuber". In an interview she explains exactly what that means and why she only fell in love with Porsche at second glance.
"Calate" is not your real last name. Why did you pick this one?
My real name is unpronounceable. That's why I was looking for a name that was memorable and that worked internationally. Then, for fun, a buddy said I was “Miss Escalate”. It's from escalating because I'm always so loud and hectic. And then it became Sophia Calate, so S. Calate.
You became famous with a Porsche 991 GT3 pre-facelift by posting videos with it on YouTube and uploading pictures to Instagram. How did this happen?
My friend bought a new Porsche three and a half years ago. I must confess, I wasn't really a Porsche fan back then. That's why unfortunately I can't tell this typical "Porsche in Love" story that people tell when they've been in love with a Porsche from an early age. On the contrary. I always found Porsche totally boring. But the more I got involved with cars and the more models I knew, the more interesting they became.
Was there a key moment?
When I first sat down in this car and drove it, the spark jumped. It was just an incredible feeling and it is and remains one of the best cars I have ever driven.
What's the matter with you?
For me, Porsche is perfection in itself. Everything is just right, especially with a GT model, because it is a great drive on the race track and on mountain passes. A Porsche lies so perfectly in the curve. You just have such natural faith in this car. Nothing rattles, the engine just sounds damn good, especially when the exhaust flap opens at 3000 - 4000 rpm. And you feel the road in that car. You still drive yourself without being restricted by driving aids. You have to work in this car. But as a car enthusiast, that's exactly why you love a car.
Where do you prefer to go in a Porsche?
We like to drive it to Italy or Austria and I love to drive it through mountain passes. And even nicer is that I got to know a lot of people through this car. The whole YouTube thing started with that car. And that's why I'll always remember it.
There are people who say that being an influencer is not a real job. What do you answer them?
If you want to earn money with YouTube, it's an absolute full-time job. I don't have a regular working week like most self-employed people do. 18 hours a day is not uncommon, the weekends I usually work through. Filming, editing, photos and their post-production - my boyfriend and I do it all ourselves. But it's fun and that's why it sometimes doesn't feel like work even though it's work.
Is it easy to make money with it?
No, especially not at the beginning. In order for something to come across financially, you need partners and cooperations. And, of course, they don't come up to you alone at first. You really have to sit down and make presentations in order to send them to companies and find the right contact persons. With luck, this results in a product placement in a video or that you are on the road as a testimonial for companies. This is how I earn my money with social media.
How long do you think you can be a YouTuber for?
That's a difficult question.
Or differently: Do you ever want to do something else or be a YouTuber for the rest of your life?
Difficult, too. I don't even know how long the YouTube medium will exist at all. That can change at any time.
Is that something that's bothering you?
Well, let me put it this way: If the case should happen that YouTube doesn't exist anymore or that it gets uncool, then there will always be something else to build reach with. I see it pragmatically.
Is there also something that you consciously keep out of the social media?
My family. That is private.
And what is the biggest mistake you can make as a YouTuber?
If you are no longer loyal to yourself and only pay attention to the money and the clicks. Despite this entire marketing model, it is important to me that I do not forget where I come from and where I stand.
What do you plan for the future, is there a 992?
A new 911 is not yet planned, because we will keep our GT3 for the time being. I ordered a new car, but it's still classified. I will soon reveal that on my channels.