Inside the life of Natalie Mariduena, YouTube star David Dobrik's assistant and childhood best friend who has helped grow his business

When she's not appearing in David Dobrik's vlogs or TikTok videos, Natalie Mariduena is working beside him to help scale his growing

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Even though Dobrik and his squad are massively popular online, those who aren't tapped into the world of influencers may not understand their business. "Even my parents, they are still confused because there isn't really a job description or proper title," Mariduena said. "I definitely came into it with this perspective like, 'OK, I'm going to do this six-month internship, and then I'll move back to Chicago and keep living my life,'" she added. "I quickly found that wasn't going to be the case and that I actually wanted to stay in California and working with David for a long period of time.

Overall, being successful online is "a lot of hard work and a little bit of luck," Mariduena said. "The No. 1 thing that I've learned working with David, and having the role that I do, is everything that he does is very quick, whether that's the YouTube videos or when he has an idea he wants it executed very quickly," she said. "A lot of the people that we partner with understand that about David, and how we get all these fun things done so quickly is that mutual understanding, and they trust that we are going to make something cool.

Mariduena's involvement started a few years ago when Dobrik, who with 18 million subscribers is one of YouTube's most popular creators, asked her to come out to LA and help him out. "I had one more semester of college I had to finish, and my parents would kill me if I just wasted all that money," Mariduena told Business Insider.

And Dobrik recently purchased a new $9. 5 million LA mansion. "Although I was hesitant at first, I'm so happy I did make the decision to move out here and work with him," Mariduena said of working with Dobrik. "It evolved from it being this internship for credits to this real role that I have in executing whatever business he's in.

Mariduena is in communication with Fanjoy on an almost daily basis helping with design concepts for future collections, Fanjoy CEO Chris Vaccarino told Business Insider. "For me specifically, I love fashion and I love clothing," Mariduena said. "That's what translates into my relationship with Fanjoy, and why I'm so hands-on there is because I genuinely love it and think it's so fun to see someone out that's wearing a design that I came up with.

So instead of dropping out, she left Chicago in 2017 and flew out to LA to complete an internship with David Dobrik LLC for college credit. "His business was growing significantly and he needed an extra hand," she said. "And I was always kind of that sisterly, responsible figure.

Fans of the YouTube star David Dobrik know Natalie Mariduena as "David's assistant Natalie" and his childhood best friend from Chicago.

There are a number of lucrative ways influencers have expanded their businesses, like working with brands on long-term partnerships and selling merchandise. "I definitely did not understand — especially a few years ago — how influencers and social-media personalities were monetizing," Mariduena said. "If you're not in it, it's really hard to understand.

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