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How to capitalise on your social media, Alphi Mkhwanazi gives tips for content creators

Business Insider SA
Alphi Mkhwanazi's conent on TikTok (Instagram screenshots)
Alphi Mkhwanazi's conent on TikTok (Instagram screenshots)
  • TikTok and Instagram sensation Sipho Alphi Mkhwanazi has become a household name, but he did not see it coming.
  • The content creator, who has over 350,000 followers on TikTok and more than 130,000 on Instagram gained stardom after people shared his video, and it went viral.
  • He gives creatives and aspiring content creators advice on using their social media accounts to make money.
  • For more stories go to www.BusinessInsider.co.za.

TikTok and Instagram sensation Alphi Mkhwanazi has become one of South Africa's fan favourites on social media, and he has some advice to share with creatives, on how to turn social media into something lucrative.

The comedian, who is also an emcee, has over 350,000 followers on TikTok and more than 130,000 followers on Instagram.

"The second I hit 100k followers on Instagram and over 250k followers on TikTok, I immediately realised that my social media pages are no longer 'chilled' spaces where I can say or do as I please.

"If I am strategic, I can easily use these pages as a source of income that'll help me monetise my love for social media and engaging with my followers," he said.

Alphi Mkhwanazi (Instagram)
Alphi Mkhwanazi (Instagram)

According to the socialite who grew up in Daveyton, he had no intention of becoming a social media star, it just happened.

One random day Mkwanazi posted a video of himself in a bathtub on his WhatsApp status where he was sharing his frustrations about not having a flat tummy, and how he was going to become the most disrespectful person once he attained one.

At the time, Mkhwanazi was not on TikTok, but people took the video, shared it on other social media platforms and just like that, he was well on his way to stardom. He joined TikTok, posted more videos and built a famous brand that puts a smile on people's faces.

Alphi Mkhwanazi and his other best friend, the mic
Alphi Mkhwanazi and his other best friend, the microphone (Instagram)

Content creation is more than just that

In a country sitting on an unemployment rate of 35.3%, Mkhwanazi advises that people can use tools such as social media to make some money, but it will take a bit of hard work and discipline.

"Content creation has become an economy of its own, and in a country where the youth unemployment rate keeps rising daily, it is imperative for all of us to make use of every opportunity available to us," said Mkhwanazi.

Here are some tips to assist creatives in growing and benefiting from social media

Be intentional

The 29-year-old social media star concedes that it is not always easy to know what you want to make of your brand, especially when starting out. But it is crucial to be intentional about what you want to do. This helps creatives strategically position themselves to grab each opportunity as it comes along.

"When you are more intentional about what you want to achieve, you are able to stay on the mark with the content you share, the brands you work with, and the campaigns you want to be part of.

"So be intentional in what you post, how you share your content and which audience you want to engage with the most. This allows me to be as authentic as possible in my engagement and my content creation," he said.

Get a manager

Social media accounts that show growth and receive a lot of interaction often get approached by brands for partnerships. It is important to have someone by your side who guides you on which brands to work with and rates to accept. This is where having a manager comes in handy.

"Having a manager that is able to negotiate better rates, source campaigns, assist with the general operation of your business etc, can be an added bonus for the creative.

"This also allows you to focus more on the content creation, while your manager takes care of the operational and general management of the business aspects for the creative," Mkhwanazi said.

Alphi Mkhwanazi enceeing at an event (Instagram)
Alphi Mkhwanazi emceeing at an event (Instagram)

Collaborate

"There's a quote that says, 'If you want to go quickly, go alone, but if you want to go far, take someone with you'. And that's exactly what collaborations and partnerships assist us with, especially for accounts that are trying to grow," Mkhawanazi said.

Collaborating with other creatives within or beyond your industry exposes you to more people and potentially new followers.   

"Through collaborations, we piggy-back on each other's audiences and following, therefore reaching more people and getting better engagement.

"One just needs to be mindful of not losing the essence of their content because sometimes collaborations can blur your work, especially when the other creator has a bigger personality," he added.

Although Mkhwanazi often shies away from collaboration, he says he wants to try and work more with other creative to grow his audience.

Find a mentor who is thriving in your space

Whether you believe in the concept or not, mentorship has its own benefits. In addition to helping you grow in your space, a mentor is likely to give you access to their network and other resources available to them.  

"A mentor affords you the insight and tools you can use to thrive in your field. Furthermore, they are able to guide you and prevent you from making the same mistakes they made as they were working their way up the ladder," said the TikTok and Instagram sensation.

Taking some time to find the right mentor might be worthwhile, especially one who will not be negative when you grow bigger than them.

Read up about your craft at least once a week.

Trends are everchanging in the world of content creation, and researching will help you you stay relevant to your followers.

"Reading helps you find different ways of gaining the competitive edge to make your content pop and to keep you most relevant amongst your peers. Reading also helps you develop some form of credibility in the work you present," Mkhwanazi said.

The content creator stressed that there is a lot to do and achieve on social media, especially since we're on our phones daily. Where there are no resources, people need to create their own in order to succeed.  

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