In Conversation with Digital Content Creator Jake Richardson
At Be Social. Be Smart. we follow all sorts of companies, groups and people that post about social media and young people. After reading an article that announced Jake Richardson as an Ambassador for the Reelise Film Festival, which aims to inspire teenagers to use social media for good instead of trolling, we sent Jake a tweet asking if he’d be keen to talk about opportunities to work together. That’s all it took to open a conversation and now he’s one of our Be Social. Be Smart. Mentors.
Jake is a digital content creator and has built up an impressive following on his social media platforms. Jake tells us on YouTube, I’m an Aussie kid based in Bondi! I was also a housemate in the 2014 Australian series of Big Brother. My YouTube video’s range from travel vlogs, collaborations, challenges, and daily life musings!
We had a chat to Jake about what he does, how he got involved with Reelise and his top tips for young people wanting to build their online portfolio.
1. Can you tell us a little about your background and what you do?
I’m a digital content creator. I work with brands both as a social influencer and as a content creator to produce digital content across numerous platforms and mediums. The majority of my work is producing video & photo content for social media platforms.
2. You have recently become involved with Reelise Film Festival that helps kids shape a better online environment through film making. What was your motivation for getting involved?
Reelise is an awesome organisation. I first became involved with them off the back of my short lived stay in the Big Brother house last year. I received a heap of hate across social media & the guys at Reelise asked me if I’d be interested in sharing a different message to those that were being sent my way. I said yes, put together a short package of the 2014 Big Brother housemates reading “hate mail” or “mean tweets” & I’ve been working with them ever since. My motivation for getting involved was simply because the Reelise message was aligned with the message I was sharing at the time, and am still sharing. It’s a social campaign called #LifeStartsNow, inspiring the millennial generation to seek their own opportunities.
3. You have built up quite a following on social media – how have you done this?
Big Brother was a massive help with starting my social following. My Instagram account went crazy off the back of the show. I think my truest audience comes from YouTube, where I started uploading video content around late 2012. I entered one of my videos into a presenting competition early last year and ended up winning it. Simon Cowell sent me a little bit of money to keep making videos and I’ve continued ever since. The money he sent me went towards paying my bond, the passion is still well & truly there 🙂
4. How has digital sharing created opportunities for you?
I’m currently on a two week blogging trip across Southeast Asia creating digital content for an accommodation provider set up over here. One of the reasons I was selected for this trip was largely due to the audience I’ve built up on my YouTube channel. The internet can be such an awesome place if you look at it with a glass half full approach. Every day provides new and exciting opportunities. Creating travel inspired video blogs and sharing my adventures online has opened up the world for me to explore.
5. You mentioned you have recently started using LinkedIn – why do you think it’s important to be on there? And how is it helping creatives?
LinkedIn is a powerful networking tool. I didn’t really appreciate its power until recently when I have been able to to track down or connect with appropriate businesses & professionals that have shown interest in collaborating on some of the projects I’ve been producing. It’s a great platform to showcase some of your skills and reach out to professionals in your field of interest.
6. What would be your top tips for kids looking to build a positive online presence?
Find out what you’re passionate about! Once you’ve found it, educate yourself on everything as there is to know surrounding that passion. Find someone who’s doing what you want to be doing & work out a plan on how you can up-skill yourself to do that thing either as well as or if not better than your mentor! Knowledge first. Strategy second. Execution third! Never stop learning.
Check out Jake’s YouTube channel here.