Content creation has become a viable career for many of South Africa’s youth. This uniquely 21st-century job requires tenacity, wits, and even luck to make it to the top.
As glamorous and 'easy' as it may seem relative to other professions, the creatives who choose this path also have to put in the hours and work hard to secure brand deals and sponsorships whilst keeping their audience entertained.
Here is how some of the country’s biggest content creators started their careers:
Known by his social media name nochill_god, the 29-year-old star rose to fame with his videos ‘meeting’ celebrities like Doja Cat, Justin Bieber, and Nicki Minaj.
He also gained popularity through his hilarious skits and memes. “I started by creating memes as nochillinmzansi, and it went well. I even grew my Instagram and Facebook pages to 500k followers and 890k followers, respectively.
“I then switched to videos and started using videos of celebrities to create the best content in SA and in the world. It all started with a passion,” he said.
The 32-year-old is one of SA’s best-known choreographers. Multifaceted, Modiselle is also an actress, television presenter, radio personality, and more.
Consistency is key when it comes to growing an online audience, according to Modiselle.
“I have been on various digital platforms since around 2007, starting on Facebook. I would gradually, over the years, record dance videos of myself and post them online, but very spontaneously. As I continued, my social media following and the interest in my offering grew, and I started posting more consistently.”
Berkowitz is a talented 24-year-old young Jewish girl from Johannesburg. Under her alter ego, Jenna Babez, she has audiences in stitches by sharing her everyday musings as she showcases her love for partying, her relationship with her overprotective parents, and her overall love for religion.
According to Berkowitz, she stumbled onto this career. “I have always loved filming and making videos, but I never considered it ‘content creation’.
“My journey officially started while I was travelling on my gap year around London back in 2020. I started the @jennababez_ Instagram page as a ‘finsta’ account. It was a joke to keep up with my friends. I never thought it would amount to what it is today, but I am so happy it did because I absolutely love it.”
21-year-old Perry used his love of pop culture to carve out a career in content creation. A natural creative, as a child, he would often create music videos with his sister on their iPads.
Nowadays, Perry has become a champion for the LGBTQ+ community by showcasing his relationship with boyfriend Christiaan through his content.
“I am a creative that does not tend to fit one niche, and I have come to realise that this is not an issue at all. I gravitate to the following different types of content creation,” said Perry.