Whether you are looking to make some extra income or start a business while working, side hustling is no small feat.You must learn to balance your commitments, stay consistent and grow while you’re at it.
Temi Ajibewa, founder of The Millionaire Housewife Academy – an online platform that has helped over 5,000 women start their online businesses, shares her golden rules for side hustle success.
Rule 1: Discover Your Passion
Your passion could be an issue you feel strongly about or something you do effortlessly.
Side hustles based on passion tend to be more sustainable because you are self-motivated to go on even when things get tough.
If you are not sure what your passion is, here are 3 ways to get started:
Look out for things you do well without incentives and recognition.
Ask people who know you what they think you are passionate about.
Consider problems people often ask you to solve because you find them easy to solve.
Rule 2: Turn Your Passion into Profit
Doing what you are passionate about is one thing. Knowing how to make money from your passion is a whole different ball game.
Here are 5 basic steps I teach my clients to monetize their passion.
1. Find the problem your passion solves
Your passion cannot bring you money unless it solves a specific human problem.
Your passion must become a product or service for you to make money from it.
A great way to turn your passion into a product is by teaching people what you know for a fee. When I started to monetize The Millionaire Housewife Academy, I created e-books, DVDs and online classes to teach people what I knew about starting and growing an online business.
I always recommend starting off with digital products because they are easier to maintain and become lifelong assets people all over the world can buy.
People pay for products and services, not passions.
5. Promote your hustle
You must shamelessly promote your passion if you want to make money from it.
You can’t afford to be shy if you want your passion to be more than a hobby. If you are nervous, start off by promoting your hustle to people in your network.
Price is only an issue where value is in dispute. Once people realize the value they’re getting from you, paying you becomes non-negotiable. It all starts with finding and monetizing your passion.
SheaMoisture is the enduring and beautiful legacy of Sofi Tucker. Widowed with five children at 19, Grandma Sofi supported her family by selling handcrafted shea butter soaps and other creations in the village market in Sierra Leone.
Sofi became known as a healer who shared the power of shea and African black soap with families throughout the countryside.
She handed down her recipes to grandson Richelieu Dennis, who founded SheaMoisture and incorporated her wisdom into the brand’s hair and skincare innovations.
SheaMoisture products and collections are formulated with natural, certified organic and fair trade ingredients, with the shea butter ethically-sourced from 15 co-ops in Northern Ghana as part of the company’s purpose-driven Community Commerce business model.
SheaMoisture has partnered with She Leads Africa to support and showcase Nigerian women who support their communities.
Meet Lynda Odoh
Lynda Odoh-Anikwe is the CEO and founder of Healthify Africa.
She is a Medical Doctor from the University of Nigeria and started Healthify Africa. Healthify Africa is an enterprise that strives to tackle the dietary risk factors for non-communicable diseases.
In the course of her daily interactions with patients, she realized that people were most driven by convenience and availability when making healthy lifestyle choices.
Lynda decided to start a fruit delivery service. She hopes this will create an enabling system for busy urban dwellers, to conveniently meet the World Health Organization’s daily fruit recommendation for a healthy life.
Her vision is to see an African continent where adopting a healthy lifestyle is easy, practical and sustainable.
When I began to practice as a medical doctor, I saw that there were so many instances of non-communicable diseases that could have been avoided by a simple dietary change.
I started Healthify Africa because I wanted to create a solution to the problem of non-communicable diseases. My goal with Healthify Africa is to address dietary risk factors.
I do this by providing a service that helps busy people adopt healthy eating habits. This is done through a simplified system and healthy lifestyle advocacy.
At Healthify Africa our focus is on increasing the consumption of fruits for busy urban dwellers through a delivery platform. By providing affordable fruit boxes, fruit cups, fruit and dip platter to school children, homes and offices, we’re building a healthier Africa one person at a time.
What was your motivation for finally starting your business?
For me, it was because I had been in similar situations and I understood the challenges people face in trying to adopt and sustain healthy dietary habits.
I grew up in a health-conscious family and I grew accustomed to having a very healthy diet. However, when I became a young adult and my schedule became tighter especially during my internship, it became extremely difficult to eat the right things.
It was a situation of knowing the right thing to do, but being unable to do it. I knew then that there must be other busy young people like me, men, women and even mothers who wanted their children eating fruits but were pressed for time as I was.
That for me was a huge community need that I passionately wanted to see addressed. So I made the decision to become the change I desired by creating an enabling platform. A platform that supports healthy food choices so as to help myself and others with the same challenge.
What makes your brand stand out?
Healthify Africa is not just another food company, that caters to only satisfying hunger. Instead, my brand is particularly focused on ensuring that everyone has access to the daily consumption of 400g of fruits, as recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO).
The vision is to create a world where healthy eating is most practical and the dietary risks of non-communicable diseases reduced to the barest minimum.
That, as well as our commitment to healthy lifestyle advocacy, has been a huge attraction for our clients because they can see it.
What are three things you struggled with when your business kicked off and how did you overcome them?
When I first started my business, a lot of people did not understand what we were trying to do and that equated to zero orders. We had to create a lot of awareness about the health benefits of patronizing our convenience-based service.
Also, through our follow-up and feedback system, we tried to encourage our clients to make referrals and this has continued to help our brand.
Secondly, being a fruit delivery service, food hygiene, presentation and safety during transit were some of my topmost priorities. It was a challenge finding the ideal packaging that met all the criteria and would still fit into our production cost.
I did my online research and eventually was able to find a reliable supplier that we now work with.
Finally, it was important that our fruit packs get delivered in a cold temperature range for a great client experience. This was a challenge when we had to deliver long-distance orders. This was an issue because there is currently no thermostat equipped delivery services operating in Abuja where we operate from.
To overcome this, we currently partner with a reliable express delivery service and improvise with ice packs in the chillers for long-distance deliveries. Hopefully, in the near future, we can have our very own thermostat equipped delivery bikes.
How do you stay above the noise in your industry?
We made sure to implement a system of receiving and acting on feedback, from early on in the business so that we know what exactly our clients want and tweak our approach to offer them that.
This has been really helpful in building a business that our clients love and customer retention as well.
Did you have any personal experience that taught you a business lesson?
Before I started my business, I had a few unpleasant experiences with logistics. On one occasion, I was to make a trip and I had made an earlier arrangement with a cab driver. However, on the morning of the trip, he was a no show, which made me have to find another one. To cut the long story short, I ended missing the bus I was to get on.
When I began my business, I took that experience with me and created a better delivery structure. I ensure that all delivery arrangements are made on time to avoid communication-related challenges. As a second step, I also make backup plans to ensure that I don’t disappoint my clients.
Can you tell us of any impact have you made in your community since you started your business?
As a medical doctor, I am really passionate about helping people live healthier lives and I made sure to infuse this into my business.
Through my brand, I have been able to raise awareness about the prevention of non-communicable diseases. Also, we have encouraged people to sustain a healthy lifestyle by organizing health and fitness challenges.
Most recently, we actively participated in the 2019 global week for action against Non-Communicable diseases. We engaged in a social media awareness campaign (#enoughNCDs #healthifyafrica) and an educational video series with a team of Doctors.
Can you share your 2019 goals with us and what you’ve done so far to achieve them?
Since we had already introduced our business, our 2019 goal was to broaden our client base. Our method was to strictly implement feedback from clients. Also, we started building partnerships that will ensure quality product delivery and unforgettable customer experience.
After doing this for some time this year, we have recorded an increase in the number of clients that have requested for our service. This is something we are going to keep doing since it’s bringing positive results.
We believe it has laid a great foundation for more successes with so many growth possibilities ahead and we are optimistic about that.
What are three interesting things about you?
The first is that I love DIY’s. I have actually painted my room from start to finish on two different occasions just for the fun of it. The last is that I love the power bikes but I’m too scared to get one yet.
What’s your favorite self-care routine?
I like to get soaked in a warm bath after a stressful day. I simply light my candles and toss in some petals. After that, I take a mental trip to wherever the CALM Meditation App takes me to, preferably the waterside.
How do you feel about this opportunity to promote your brand on SLA, sponsored by SheaMoisture?
I feel absolutely ecstatic! When I first saw the email from SLA and SheaMoisture, I was so excited. I had to read it over and over again to make sure it was really for me. Thank you so much She Leads Africa and SheaMoisture for this opportunity.
What is one word that should come to people’s minds when they think about your product/ services?
You can find SheaMoisture products at Youtopia Beauty stores nationwide and on Jumia.
Asiyami Gold is one of the continent’s most notable Instagram influencer’s who is consistently revered in hundreds of comments for being authentic and inimitable in her storytelling as well as her work.
Her personal storytelling does not hold an essentialist, romantic nor exotic gaze of the continent.
Rather, everything she does, from her presets to her consulting, shows the continent the way it is— a mix of technological innovations and idiosyncratic socio-economies, with a shared political history.
Gold is the Founder and CEO of the creative agency A Gold Studio and has worked with clients like Furla, Pantene, HERE map and Christian Cody.
Amy Sall is the founder of digital magazine SUNU: forthcoming print and digital publication.
Even before the launch of the Journal, Sall’s tens of thousands of Instagram followers have known her best for making pre-colonial and historic media (film, TV, photography, interviews, reports etc) from the continent accessible by sharing images and stories that scream “for us, by us and of us”—foreshadowing the meaning of “sunu”, the Wolof word for “our”.
A few months ago, a friend of mine suggested that I follow @theslumflower on Instagram, and my life has never been the same since!
Sis is all about being unapologetically self-loving, creative, independent and successful.
If you want to write, design or create but you’re feeling like as an African woman, there are certain worries that you work through alone, then following @theslumflower will give you enough inspiration to turn your #hotgirlsummer into a #hotgirlyear.
“We’ve spent the last three years coming together every Wednesday to connect over our future plans and our shared love for beautiful experiences – always in the presence of wine. From this, Wine-ish was born.”
Wine-ish is a dynamic group of 4 black women occupying the world of wine, one glass at a time.
Palesa Mapheelle, Obakeng Monamodi, Buhlebezwe Ndaba and Hlumelo Williams came together as friends on a casual Wednesday, also known as ‘Winesday’, to share their goals, dreams and everyday experiences.
156 Winesday’s later, they decided to form Wine-ish; a platform that has become a hub for all things wine and business, soon to disrupt the industry.
Wine-ish takes you on a visual journey of South Africa’s rich world of wine and related experiences through the lens of young, vibrant women of color.
The name choice is quite unique and has an interesting meaning behind it. Not only does the team focus on the technical understanding of viniculture and “Wine”, but the “Ish” in the name is also just as important to them; representing the side of them that is simply 4 young women navigating life together with all of its ups and downs.
Wine-ish is deeply rooted in and propelled by the connection the four of them share as friends, before anything else.
As a business, Wine-ish aims to debunk wine and the drinking of it, all while making it more accessible to an emerging market who want to learn and experience more about it.
They don’t want to be seen as experts, but as people who are constantly learning and challenging the norms of the industry.
The zestful, youthful and vibrant energy of the team has always been what differentiates them from the firm and rigid industry they’re trying to create a space in, and it has been nothing but refreshing.
Infiltrating the industry has had its challenges but seeing the growth of people of color creating their own brands and wineries has left the team hopeful in making sure they will transform and create a positive disruption for themselves and in partnership with like-minded, forward-thinking collaborators.
“We remain true to a core mission of ours which is to expose ourselves and people like us to the world of wine”
So, watch this space, because Wine-ish is going to be coming in strong with a lot more to show you.
For more on Wine-ish, their incredible brand, and upcoming projects; follow them on Instagram and Twitter.
Curated within the beautiful landscape of Jozi on a peaceful Sunday, She Leads Africa in partnership with The Cut Life and Originals by Africa’s Best held a Boss Brunch and panel with the finest Motherland Mogul influencers of Africa.
The location was a hidden oasis of tranquility, The Gabriela’s Tea Room, perfect for some girl chat, champagne was flowing, the crowd was buzzing. What a beautiful Sunday.
In the era of feminism and self-love, you do find some false prophets that don’t live up to their campaign inside as loudly as they may be online.
What was important about the #IAMORIGINAL panel and brunch was that it focused on the challenges black women struggle through.
The theme that stood out from the event was the need for women to back each other up and actually mean it.
For the older and younger generation to join minds and create solutions for the Motherland Moguls that follow.
The event kicked off with a warm welcome from the bubbly Shanon Stanislaus of Originals by Africa’s Best. She spoke about the benefits of their new Coconut Creme range that has nutrition rich formulas, helping your natural hair with the foundation its needs for hair goals.
We then proceeded into an hour-long networking bingo session, that had our Influencers and Motherland Moguls buzzing through the room, the energy was so lively- It felt like the best girl chat session I’ve been to in ages.
We held bingo cards that had questions such as “Who in the room has three pets, Who is an only child”. These were great ice breakers, especially for an introvert like myself.
Back to our tables, we were served incredible dishes by The Gabriela’s Tea Room patrons, everything delicious and mouthwatering.
“ You don’t know what you want to do until you’ve tried it all”.
This tied in so well with the events hashtag of the day #IAMORIGINAL, when you apply yourself and work on what your secret sauce is, what do you really have to lose ?
All in all, this was an event, unlike any other networking event I have been to, which is saying a lot as I have been to a ton of networking sessions and gone home feeling as though I barely received much value from the speakers.
It could be just how intimate the brunch was or the fact that everyone left their egos at the door and simply wanted to celebrate each other.
I have nothing but praise for what these women aimed to share through the event and I believe that we can all learn from them.
As Motherland Moguls we are constantly inspiring those around us, we may not realize it a lot of the times, the best thing we can do is live an intention-driven life in our goals, decisions, and actions.
Work within the passion and not ego, power or status.
I’m definitely looking forward to more events from these powerhouses.
27 years old Senzelwe Mthembu is an explorer at heart, a South African traveler, researcher, content creator, and photography enthusiast.
When she’s not curating travel experiences, Senzelwe works as a social researcher at the Centre for Social Development in Africa (CSDA). She focuses on youth transitions into adulthood, youth (un)employment, and on other topics related to young people.
She has a background in politics, philosophy, and economics and obtained her Master’s Degree in Philosophy at the University of the Witwatersrand in 2015.
In this article, she highlights how she’s evolving as a traveler and her experiences traveling on the continent.
What made you fall in love with travel?
My passion for travel started at a young age when, as a family, we would drive down to rural Kwa-Zulu Natal during the festive season.
I remember being fascinated by the change in terrain and context. The first memorable trip for me was to the Kruger National Park in Mpumalanga. So my passion for travel and the African continent started right here, in South Africa.
I later realized the need to showcase my love for travel and to highlight Africa’s beauty to other Africans and to the world.
What kind of traveler are you?
I think I have evolved as a traveler and will probably continue to evolve as my interests change. I was once primarily interested in going to the main tourist attractions and wanting to do things because so many other people had done them.
Travel felt like quite a selfish endeavor. I now take a greater interest in the people from the place that I am traveling to and I want to fully immerse myself in the culture and learn as much as I can.
What interesting social customs have you encountered while traveling the continent?
There are two things which I found interesting. The first was just how friendly and helpful people in Kenya are.
I have not experienced hospitality in the way I experienced it in Kenya. It felt like there was a real concern for other human beings, especially those visiting their country.
The second, which we generally don’t practice here in South Africa, was taking your shoes off when you enter someone’s home. Not only was this the case in the traditional Swahili settlement of Lamu where most of the population is Muslim, but this practice was also found in Nairobi, Kenya where on one evening we invited friends we had made over to our Airbnb home and they did the same.
I found it interesting that young people in Kenya were also taking their shoes off when entering someone’s home.
Paradise on a plate… Your favorite meal on any of your travels?
My favorite meal on my travels was at a very unpretentious, buffet-style traditional Swahili restaurant.
It was the first meal I had in Lamu, Kenya and consisted of pilau (a rice, meat and vegetable dish that is very popular in Kenya), lentils, fish in a spicy tomato stew and other vegetables.
I was so impressed by the flavors.
What do you know now about traveling on a limited budget that you wish you’d known earlier?
I wish I took the plunge earlier! Travel is possible for many people and a range of budgets can be accommodated.
But I do wish I learned the art of saving ahead of time and drawing up a budget. There are so many ways of making travel more affordable, whether it’s taking local public transport, staying in someone’s home or eating where locals eat.
Traveling on a limited budget does not necessarily make your experience any less enjoyable.
Got any travel & safety hacks for passport newbies & solo travelers?
Here are 3 tips for keeping safe and for saving money, especially as a solo traveler.
1. Do your research ahead of time.
The first important things to check for international travel in Africa is whether or not you need any vaccinations such as for Yellow Fever or Malaria.
Also, check luggage dimensions and free baggage policies for the airline or be prepared to pay extra, risk missing your flight or be forced to leave things behind!
2. Choose your accommodation wisely.
Solo travel often means paying more for accommodation since you won’t be sharing the costs with anyone. But that is not always the case!
It’s important to ask yourself what you can afford but also, what you can’t compromise on when it comes to accommodation. If your budget is low, you can still find good accommodation but manage your expectations.
Use Airbnb to book your accommodation as it allows you to book a private room in someone’s house at your stated budget. This makes it safer for you as most of the time you are living with a local who can provide invaluable information and tips about the neighborhood.
Also consider staying in a hostel or backpackers, which will work out to be much cheaper and makes it easier for you to meet like-minded solo travelers. For both these options, remember to read reviews!
Be as prepared as possible.
Prepare for possible long layovers at airports by having a pillow or blanket, WATER (I cannot stress this one enough) and snacks from the plane or from home.
Carry a moon bag or small backpack for your valuables. It’s so much easier to remember the important things when you can access valuables easily. Write out important contact details and information in multiple places, including on your phone and have extra copies of important documentation in case you lose anything.
And make sure you can access your money from more than one bank card.What is your next travel destination, and why?
I will be traveling to Rwanda and Tanzania soon, but this time it’ll be as part of a beautifully curated group trip where West Africans and Southern Africans, amongst others, will meet in East Africa for an experience of a lifetime.
My sister and I have a shared passion for travel in Africa and so we launched our destination travel company, Lived Experience Travel, this year. Our first international trip is in partnership with Ghana-based, The Travel Clan (@thetravelclan on Instagram) and we are heading to East Africa.
This will be a two-country, 11-day trip to Rwanda and Tanzania that fuses culture, art, traditional food and that celebrates what Africa has overcome and what some of our achievements are.
Your final travel advice for motherland moguls?
I think we need to take advantage of what technology and social media have enabled us to do and that is – connect.
The best way to experience a new place is by meeting the locals, having real conversations with people and exploring together.
Another piece of advice is not to wait for others to come along and that local travel is valid! If you notice a pattern of passing travel opportunities up, save some of the money you would have spent on eating out and shopping until you can comfortably do a solo trip or an organized group trip.
Be open-minded, humble yourself to the ways of others, be yourself and learning from my past mistakes – draw up a budget (even if it’s rough).
What do you love the most about your country? Click here to share.
Every day we see Motherland Moguls go about their bizness in stylish purses and handbags. However, no matter how pretty the bag looks or what the label says, the content of a woman’s purse is a sum of how she takes charge of her day.
The content of a woman’s purse is King!
Every woman has some little essentials and fav things they carry around every day, mostly in a smaller pouch in their purse. It could be hand sanitizer, hand lotion, medicine, perfume, etc. Whatever it is, they help keep you safe and secure to take on each day as they come.
On the other hand, some women carry a lot of baggage around every day, just for the sake of it, which they never use or touch.
Having a good smartphone with a long-lasting battery in your purse at all times keeps you connected with the world and helps you stay organized for your daily routines.
Beyond texting and scrolling through social media all day, there is SO much you can do with your mobile phone. And even much more if its a Samsung smartphone.
With a Samsung smartphone, you can:
Take notes and write down fresh ideas in your daily light bulb moments
Take the best photos and document live events all day with its outstanding camera quality
Create personalized videos and content with the AR emoji tool
Collect your client’s contacts by using the SnapBiz app from Samsung Galaxy apps store
Keep track of your health and wellness with the Samsung Health app – even better if you add the Samsung Galaxy Watch on your wrist.
In light of our February theme at SLA which is – Good Living, we’re ensuring that all Motherland Moguls have a sound mind, body, and soul.
3. Powder pallet/ Lip gloss
Girl, you never know who you’re going to bump into at the most random place.
Always have some light make-up in your purse to get you fresh-faced for impromptu meetings, or quick drinks with your girls.
In the absence of a powder pallet, let your lipgloss call the shots.
4. Business Cards
Even though you can collect clients info on your mobile using the SnapBiz app on your Samsung smartphone, you might meet some traditional clients who would rather have a hard copy of your business card.
It’s important to always have this in the small section of your purse, for easy accessibility.
5. Notepad + Pen
A notepad or post it pad and a pen equal as back up for your phone. This always comes in handy for when you have to write down contact details or ideas in a moment’s notice when you’re out of your comfort zone.
6. Sanitary towel/ Tampon
Nature always has its way with us, and we really can’t cheat it, but you should always be prepared for the “red robot”.
If possible, have a pad/ tampon in every possible place, like your car, office desk, laptop bag, etc, just so you’re never caught in a compromising situation.
If you feel you have a pattern and are never caught unawares, do it for the culture. You never know, a sister might be in need of this, and you get to save the day.
7. A Book
Just because #WeStayLearning, always have with you a book to pass time while commuting or waiting to go into your meeting.
Now depending on the size of your purse, you could either have a paperback book, or an e-book on your smartphone.
Breaking into the creative industry is not easy but there are pioneers paving the way. These young women, taking over the music industry in Botswana are Motherland Moguls in their own right.
They are taking over not just locally but internationally as well inspiring a new sound. What is inspiring by all these women, is not only their music.
It’s their work in pushing the industry forward and creating opportunities for other artists through meaningful collaboration.
Let’s meet all 5 of them, shall we?
Thato Jessica started her career singing as the only female member of X-Caliber – a Gospel Hip-Hop group which gained its popularity in the country through their unique sound and positive message.
She left the group in 2015 to pursue her solo career.
The Mapoka born artist who has a degree in Architecture from the University of Botswana started her solo career being featured on Chef Gustos song – Take Your Time, which revealed the singer’s talent and capacity to stand on her own.
The poet and visual artist released her single – Show me, which has since been followed by her Seasons EP, and consequently amazing songs like Problem Feat. Veezo, and her latest offering Addicted.
Her music genre is R&B, Hip-Hop, Motswako, and Soul. You can find her music on her Youtube channel.
Samantha Mogwe – born to a Motswana father and a Zambian mother, brings a fusion of neo-soul/RnB to her music. This artist/songwriter performs on local and international stages and well recognized for her work in Botswana.
Samantha is a multifaceted individual who places great value on education and its re-inventive qualities. She acquired her degree Cum Laude in Theology which she attained at Baptist Theological College in Randburg, South Africa.
Some of her early career accomplishments include being 2nd runner-up for My African Dream Junior singing category in 2003 and winner of the Gabz Karaoke Idols in 2004.
She made the top 24 of African Idols as the only representative from Botswana in 2008.
Samantha has performed at the monthly Exodus Live Poets events as well as their annual festivals alongside artists such as Neo Quashie, TJ Dema, Phil Rotz, KK the beatboxer from 2004-2010 and won an award for “My African Dream – Living The Dream” in 2010.
Her first album Transition released in 2013 was a huge success leading to performances on various local and international stages of note.
She is currently a radio host on Gabz-FM and also recently released new music titled Secrets which is receiving recognition in Botswana.
The workout loving singer is a mother and wife and was born in Serowe, Botswana. Her music can be found on Amazon and on her YouTube Channel.
Mpho Sebina is a self-taught and learning musician whose music can only be described as Afrofuturistic soul and R&B.
Growing up in a family of music lovers her writing and singing style is inspired by the likes of Sade, Bob Marley, Brenda Fassie, Boom Shaka, Lebo Mathosa and others which you can hear as part of her influences in her music. She studied and graduated with an Honours Degree in International Business from Multimedia University in Malaysia where she performed for local spaces and poetry sessions and made her exploration into music more than just a passion.
Malaysia is where the song Loves Light was written, inspired by the song Tselane by Black Jacks. She released a full length titled album Loves Light and released an EP titled Neo which means Gift this year.
Mpho is the founder of Naked Soul Sessions which gives a platform to local artists including some on this list. She has performed on various stages locally and internationally and is featured on Global Citizen as artists to watch.
Amantle Brown is an R&B artist who started on a local talent show called My Star and made it to the finale. Her first album titled Sa Pelo gave the artist her place in the industry with hits like Black Mampatile and Moratiwa which dominated local radio airwaves.She was nominated for several awards including the Botswana Music Union Awards Best RnB and Best New Comer in 2015. Since then she has also collaborated with other artists with amazing music.
She released Follo, a romantic song featuring one of the local artists which was inspired by Afro Beats which exposed her artistic range and embrace of a more African sound.
She is a songwriter, singer, and performer who is known to deliver quality all rounded performances. Her work now extends to being a judge on Melody Gospel Television on Botswana Television.
She released a much-anticipated sophomore project in April with the stand out track being Bereka Mosadi which means Work, Woman – an anthem for Southern African women to pursue their dreams.
You can listen to more of her music on Youtube.
Louisa April is a contemporary soul and R&B singer, songwriter and musician. Her acoustic music is mostly emotional and is also infused and highlighted with alternative folk and soul.
Born to a Namibian mother and Nigerian father, Louisa spent her first seven years in Namibia before returning to be raised in Gaborone, Botswana.
Louisa grew up behind a book. This led to her trying out writing in its various forms (poetry, songs) she also had a natural talent for singing. She pursued a degree in Computer Science in Russia, is a committee member of Purple Crown Society and a Global Shaper in the Gaborone Hub.
She has performed at MILO Concert Hall in Russia and alongside Tafnaz the Acoustic Badboi at the Jazz Exchange in Botswana. Louisa has also performed for the Gaborone International Music Festival and Naked Soul Sessions.
I started my Instagram page back in 2015 as a fitness inspiration account to keep me accountable while I was doing Kayla Itsines Bikini Body Guide also known as BBG.
There were a whole bunch of girls around the world who started their guide around the same time as me so I gained followers relatively quickly because my page was a source of motivation for all the new girls starting.
My page grew as BBG grew in popularity, and it eventually grew to where it is now. I became an ambassador for BBG Cape Town in 2016 and we hosted regular BBG workout events until the end of 2017.
Over the years I continued to document my fitness journey and post relatable content. Workout memes, inspirational quotes, and transformation pictures really motivated me and seemed to connect well with people on similar journeys.
I got into fitness to empower myself because I had no confidence in myself before I started working out regularly, even though I played sport throughout my life.
I started my fitness page in 2015 but my health and fitness journey started in 2013 back when I used to use Twitter for workout motivation.
Before you go on this influencer journey, follow these steps:
1. Decide your niche and stick to it
It’s easier to grow a page if you specialize in one or a few things so people will know what to expect from you.
Think about it, when you follow an account that’s not a friend or celebrity it’s usually because they post something specific that you like eg. make-up tutorials, fitness or fashion inspiration, food recipes etc.
2. Think of yourself as a brand
If you’re building a brand, there has to be some level of self-reflection your page needs to be an honest extension of you.
What do you stand for? What’s your vibe? Make sure your feed represents your personal brand.
3. Figure out your why
What’s the purpose/aim of your account?
Is it purely for fun or is it business? And then decide how much time you want to invest in it to match what you expect to gain from it.
4. Have a theme for your pictures
Everybody likes things, make sure you have a flow going on your page. There are so many categories to pick from. You can use a consistent color theme or even have a particular object in all your photos to test your creativity.
Even if it’s just the same filter, aesthetically planned feeds are nice to look at.
5. Work, Work, Work
Put relative time and effort into your posts and try to be as creative as possible. Try having “content creation” sessions once or multiple times a week like you have study sessions.
And/or take down any ideas that pop in your mind in your memo pad so you can use them for post and caption ideas later.
That’s the whole point of social media! Respond to your comments and engage with the accounts you follow so they are encouraged to engage with you too.
The more engagement you have the greater the chances are of your page being discovered by people and brands.
7. Use hashtags
The hashtag game is always changing but it doesn’t hurt to experiment with a few and see how it affects the engagement of your posts.
Also, try to use less popular hashtags so ones that have less than 1M posts. You’ll have to search for hashtags in your niche and find the ones that people use but don’t abuse like #fitness or #love
8. Collaborate with people in your niche
Follow and engage with accounts in your niche to let other people interested in your niche see your profile, the more your account has seen the greater chances you have of gaining new followers.
You can also do story shoutouts with people in your niche for more exposure or even try to ask them out for coffee.
9. Track your engagement
Pay attention to what posts people respond to best. Figure out what content your followers enjoy viewing. Track the times you get the best engagement, that usually helps get followers.
10. Have fun
It’s really not that deep unless you see it as a business, then different rules apply but don’t let social media get to you.
Remember, Instagram isn’t real life and real life has so much more to offer than aesthetics. That doesn’t mean I don’t love a pretty bowl of oats, just remember to keep everything in context.
The Bottom Line
When you focus less on structure after you’ve done your content planning, more ideas tend to come your way. If you are someone takes their own photos.
I would recommend walking around with a portable camera or learn some tricks with your phone. People really do gravitate to someone they sense is genuine or can add value. I think you need to stay up to date with all the changes and continuously adapt your content (Try to think of ways you can make yourself invaluable) if you really want to slay the game.
For more on Shalom’s fitness journey and amazing fitspo, find her on the gram.
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“The main essential for starting a blog is to first have a passion for something”. – Chioma Ezekwesili
Blogging is a great platform to express yourself, build a brand, and even make a source of income. Due to the diverse benefits of blogging, there is an influx of blogs and bloggers.
This can make the process of building and growing your blog daunting. You might question whether it is worth it and how do you go about building this presence online?
In this interview with fashion and lifestyle blogger Chioma Ezekwesili, she provides inspiration for prospective and current bloggers on her experience of starting and building her blog and brand.
When and why did you decide to start your fashion and lifestyle blog and what were the essentials to beginning it?
The main essential for starting a blog is to first have a passion for something. It could be cooking, fashion, gossip, politics, and other topics. You don’t have to be an English guru but you should always endeavor to read something new about your passion.
This is significant because you can then provide your readers with new insights into your niche. In addition, you will be able to come up with new and diverse ways to relate to your readers.
Secondly, you should draft a consistent timetable. It’s hard at the beginning but once you start, keep at it. Every day, have a topic you can write on. What will help you is approaching each day with an open mind? Also, make sure the photos, write up or videos are original because it allows your readers to connect with your originality.
As for myself, I started my fashion and lifestyle blog in 2015 but I couldn’t keep up with it. This was because I started the previous blog with the sole purpose of making money. The blog was just alive for about three months and that was it.
Then, I officially started www.yhitschioma.com in July 2016. This blog is out of my love for fashion. I also felt the need to express my opinion on lifestyle tips. I try to make my posts inspirational. I merge fashion styles to relatable inspirational quotes. I want to let people know that fashion is more than wearing designer clothes. Fashion is also a way of passing a positive message to the people around you.
What is the best platform for intending media influencers to be on and why?
Instagram and Twitter are the best platforms, dependent on the type of influencer you are. Instagram is mainly for fashion, lifestyle, and style. It’s best for visual appeal through photos and videos. Then, Twitter is good for sports lovers, especially soccer.
The discussions on Twitter around the leagues is something that anybody building his/her brand around soccer needs to be on. Twitter is also a good platform for having discussions about politics, sports, music, health tips and more.
I advise that you be linked on both platforms. That way, whatever you post on one can reflect on the other. However, more attention should be placed on the social media platform primarily for your type of brand.
Social media metrics are ever changing and for those looking to make an impact online, the competition is increasing. Is it possible to grow one’s social media organically?
Yes, you can grow organic followers and I am a testimony to it. I grew my 7k followers on Instagram by posting my Sunday bests every Sunday and tagged it #fashionforchurch. Every Sunday, people were looking forward to what I wore to church. Once you find out what your followers like, stick to it and be consistent.
Do not buy followers because interactions on your post will not match your followership. That matters because people and brand will immediately see through that.
The first year might not be easy but keep posting. Also, make sure you use hashtags because they work like magic.
What is your process of growing your brand presence?
Building your brand starts with a conscious effort to actually build the brand.
Find the social media platform that suits what you are trying to build
Try to make your followership on any social media platform that you are on organic. If you are on Instagram, never miss relevant hashtags like #MCM #MondayMotivation #WCW #TBT #FBF or things like that.
You can even come up with your own personal hashtag that people can follow through your post. For me, it’s #LifeOfAStartingEntrepreneur and #yhitschioma.
If Twitter is your platform, be sure to check the trending hashtags and draft your tweets around it.
Finally, you have to be consistent your post on social media. Be sure to have your contact details available for people to reach you. Reply and like comments so that there is a discussion around your post.
How can one stand out and be unique online?
You stand out by being real. Don’t try to be in competition with anyone. Rather, you should strive to be a better version of yourself.
Keep doing what you love and don’t copy others. Be original with your posts.
What steps should an aspiring media influencer take to attract opportunities to work with organizations, brands, and collaborations?
Keep your profile open not private. Make sure you give credit to other brands you are wearing or using on your page. Then, you get other brands to notice that you are promoting other brands. They will then want to work with you.
For blog collaborations, if you never reach out to people, you might not have anyone reach out to you. Last year, I sent about 5-6 messages to other bloggers like myself for collaboration.
However, I got turned down by about 4 and I didn’t mind. I did a collaboration with the bloggers that wanted to. The result is that other bloggers saw it and then reached out to me for collaboration. That’s why you have to make sure you put yourself out there.
Then, you have to keep doing what you have been doing using hashtags to get noticed. In time, the right brands will find you.
You can also send DMs to them by telling them you will like to work with them. Give them an offer they can’t resist. An offer that will help both parties build their brand.
How does one stay motivated to be able to produce and create?
The main way to stay motivated is to remember why you started your blog. Remember the vision you had for your brand and hold on to it. Sometimes, it might not pay off immediately but with consistency and determination, it will supersede your expectation.
Lastly, reach out to longtime brands and know how they were able to stay motivated. Do not beat yourself up, especially when you see other influencers “doing” better.
Take that as a push and initiative to work harder. Always celebrate the big and small victories you might have because that will motivate you to keep at it.
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