Paula Garijo, the 'tiktoker' who triumphs from a scrapyard: "It all started with a 7 km VW T-Roc"

Never has a company dedicated to dismantling cars and selling spare parts had as much impact on social networks as Desguaces Logroño has achieved.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
01 April 2024 Monday 10:34
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Paula Garijo, the 'tiktoker' who triumphs from a scrapyard: "It all started with a 7 km VW T-Roc"

Never has a company dedicated to dismantling cars and selling spare parts had as much impact on social networks as Desguaces Logroño has achieved. The business founded in 2001 by Miguel Romero is a benchmark in the sector. Not only because of its enormous stock that exceeds 300,000 pieces and because it exports its products to a hundred countries, but also because of its success on the internet.

Paula Garijo (Alfaro, Logroño, 1998) is the visible face of the company located in the town of Oyón. The community manager of Desguaces Logroño arrived at her offices a year ago with the aim of giving greater visibility to the business. And boy has she achieved it. With her self-confidence in front of the cameras, her videos are viral and she gains a handful of new followers every day.

Did you expect your videos to be so successful?

Well, when I got here I didn't even know I was going to make videos. What's more, the person who made them was someone else. The thing is that he went on vacation, in August, and my boss told me to make a video, that we couldn't stop publishing content.

Like that, all of a sudden.

Yes, he told me: go down, make a video and let it be whatever God wants.

Did you have experience recording videos?

Not at all! I have always had a hard time getting in front of a camera. I am a person who has never liked taking photos. Grab a camera and start recording myself, well… ugh! Even though I'm alone, as I know many people are going to see it, I feel ashamed. But hey, now I'm over it. My only experience until then consisted of editing and editing my partner's videos.

And how did it end up in a scrapping company? Is she a car geek?

That's not the case either. My father is a truck driver, but I have nothing to do with cars. When I joined the company I started to learn something, my colleagues taught me. And when I started seriously with this video thing, they gave me even more excitement. They teach me a lot of things. Little by little I am learning and it is true that now I can talk about many things that I had no idea about when I arrived.

So, he ended up in this company as he could have ended up anywhere else...

Yes Yes. Look, I'm from a small town, Alfaro de la Rioja. But he studied public relations in Segovia. Then he did a master's degree in digital marketing and a lot of graphic design courses. But when the pandemic caught me in the middle, I returned to Alfaro again to work as a marketing technician in a water treatment company.

Oh…

I was there a year. But knows? The town seemed very small to me, I was at my parents' house, I was very bored... And there came a time when I told myself I'm going to throw resumes everywhere and wherever I fall, I fall. I don't know how I saw that the scrapyard was looking for a community manager and I posted my resume. I said, bah..., the scrapyard doesn't attract much attention to me, but look where, I came here, I did an interview, they showed me the facilities, which are amazing... And they caught me! All started here.

Returning to the topic of videos, do you remember the first one you made?

Yes, like everything I did at the beginning, I only showed cars. But there came a day when I told myself I'm going to add mechanics, because people like it. The commercials explain things to me and then I tell it. But in my way. In the end you realize that what people like most is for me to show them cars with self-confidence, be a bit silly and not get 100% into mechanics because I think it's a bit of a pain.

Have you noticed much evolution in the videos since the day your boss threw you to the lions?

I notice a lot of difference between the first videos and the ones I'm making now. Getting in front of a camera, as I told you before, has always been difficult for me. What I see is that I have been gaining in naturalness, it is what people like. This is not an 8 hour job. You have to put in a lot of hours, a lot of desire, but above all naturalness. And whatever people tell you, let them tell you. Because, if not, you fall down and you won't get back up.

When did you realize that your videos were amazing?

In November or December, I don't remember well, the boom occurred. We had 30,000 followers on social networks and we went to 50,000. There was one weekend when we got 7,000 followers. We went from receiving a lot of criticism to receiving positive comments, people supporting me. Then I thought: this is getting out of hand, we are growing a lot, let's see how it is managed.

Do you remember what that viral video was?

The video that hit it already has over a million and a half views. It was a video about a T-Roc that entered the scrapyard with only 7 kilometers. He had fallen from the truck that was taking him to the dealership. It was a new car from the factory, but since it fell and overturned, the roof and front part were blown out. The rest of the car was perfect, but it could no longer be sold in this condition.

Do many luxury cars arrive at the scrapyard?

That I have recorded, a Maseratti Levante that came in a few days ago. We've also owned a lot of Porsches and Jaguars. I've been seeing a lot of BMWs lately. It is true that the material we have is luxury material, a little more expensive, which sometimes comes to us directly from the factory. We don't have any old cars.

Are videos with luxury cars the ones your followers like the most?

Yes, sure. They have a lot of impact. They are cars that people don't see every day and they can't buy them either. Seeing a car for which someone has spent 80,000, 120,000 or 200,000 euros and that is in the scrap yard because it has been hit by a fire and has burst, well, that's cool. There are few cars that come to us because their engines have failed or they have become old. Normally they come because they have had an accident, they are destroyed and cannot be fixed.

What do your bosses say about the company's impact on social networks?

They are freaking out. As she told him before, there came a time when the account went boom. People knew us, they called us... We have a crazy brand image. They stop me on the street and say 'Desguaces Logroño?', although when I go without glasses I go more unnoticed. We have achieved a very strong brand image. My bosses are very happy. They have totally trusted me, everything I have asked for has been given to me. The truth is that your support has been essential for me to get to where I am.

His superiors must be trembling, because there will be no shortage of offers...

I have grown up here and I want to continue growing here. I can't imagine leaving this company. My bosses have given me so much, that I want to give back to them what they have given me. We have gotten a very good team to function very well and I think this can go much further.

Do many people work in the scrapyard?

In total, we are about 80 people. And don't think they are all men. It is true that it is a very masculine sector, that is how it has always been, but things are changing. There are also women here and little by little things will become more equal as happens in other sectors of society.

He also does a podcast…

Yes, they came to propose it to us and my boss asked me if I saw myself capable of making a podcast as well. Of course I like it! We've had five programs and things are getting more serious. There will be time for me to let go… People come from all fields, not just the automotive industry. Kitchen chefs, psychologists... It's very natural. It's like if you meet a friend on the street, you start talking a little about everything: about the person, what they've achieved... We also talk about modifications to cars, there is a fixed section on the test to get the driving license. We fool around a bit, which in the end is what people like. We have focused it on entertainment so that more people follow us.

By the way, do you have a driver's license?

Yes, since I was 22, but taking it out was a horrible experience. It turns out that my brother, who is four years younger, and I bet on grandpa's car. Whoever got the license first was going to get the car, a Land Rover Freelander that he still drives. I had the practical exam on December 21 and he had it a few days later, on the 29th, I think I remember.

Who won the bet?

I did terrible on the exam. I ran a red light, I was super nervous. When we finished I started crying so that the examiner would approve me. And I don't know how it happened but he told me: “well, you haven't done that bad,” and I ended up passing. So I won my brother's bet.