Aleks Brzoska is a 19 year old creative director and entrepreneur who spent over 7 years working towards his “overnight” success on social media where he put into use his 3D design skills and clever marketing strategies to accumulate over 220 million views in his very first month.
“Ever since I was little, I loved computers and everything about them. I was about 12 years old when I was first introduced to any kind of computer software; it was actually a video editing program. I got very comfortable with using the software in a very short period of time and ever since then, I got so intrigued in using specialised software that I started learning other programs. From image editing and music production, to web development and interior design software, I wanted to know it all”.
As they say, the best investment is in yourself. Since Aleks spent so much time developing his skills in all these areas, it was just a matter of time until he found something he would excel at. Today he takes advantage of this by creating social media content for his audience on Snapchat under the username AleksBrzoska, where he sometimes works with brands and other creators. There are other ways in which he monetises his skillset, for example by building websites and apps for clients or for his own business use. Now that we have met the 19 year old entrepreneur and we learned more about his story, let’s find out what exactly happened when his work started going viral on the internet.
“The very first face filter I ever made was the baby Yoda filter. It received a great response from my friends, which were the only people who knew about it at the time. Baby Yoda was a very popular meme back then and they loved it, however my friends then started sharing it with their friends and before I knew it I was sitting on 100,000 views.
The next day I opened my laptop and my jaw has never dropped so low when I realised that my filter was on 14 million views overnight! All my friends were messaging me and sending me screenshots that I’m the number one trending creator in almost every country in the world, huge celebrities were using it: Hollywood stars, internet celebrities, artists, you name it. Later that week this filter alone surpassed 100 million views. It is called Spill The Truth, you can try it out for yourself by simply typing it into the search bar on the Snapchat filters page.
Due to the fact that all the filters that I make are connected to my personal Snapchat page, I also started getting a lot of views on everything else I am doing, allowing me to reach a large audience through my stories which are just photos and videos that only show up on my profile for 24 hours before disappearing. This also allowed me to work with other creators and brands to grow even more. The most recent project I worked on was a clothing collection with a mainstream fashion brand which I won’t mention the name of because no free clout (Laughs) but if you search me up I’m sure you can find it”.
If we were to learn at least one thing from Aleks, it would be to stay persistent. It is important that you love what you do, otherwise it would be hard to work on for longer periods of time, Aleks also said: “People always ask me; how do you not get bored constantly doing something on your computer?, the answer is simple. I love it. I never party or go on pointless outings, I see those things as just procrastination and doesn’t interest me at all, which apparently is weird for a teenager but maybe I’ll develop the need to party in the future and I’ll jam at the bingo meetings when I’m 80 years old”.
If you like Aleks’ story and want to find out more about what he does and his future plans or you want to get in touch with him; you can visit www.aleksbrzoska.com, Follow him on Instagram @Aleksbrzz, Add him on Snapchat: AleksBrzoska, or tune into the following interview…
Where do you see yourself in five years?
“This is a hard question, however in terms of work, I’m certain that it will also be internet based. I love travelling and exploring the world, the only way I can do that regularly is by having a business I can fully manage on the go from a laptop or phone.”.
What are your next moves to achieve your next goal?
“My next goal is to convert the audience from Snapchat onto other social media channels like YouTube and Instagram, therefore my next move is to make quality content on those other platforms”.
Where should teenagers who want to pursue a career in social media start in your opinion?
“Be creative, the best path is one that hasn’t yet been invented. People like to see new stuff; if you can be the first to do something you might start a trend. Pick a social media network you enjoy using, then start creating quality content on it”.
What are three books you would recommend to beginner entrepreneurs?
“Think and grow rich – Napoleon Hill
How to win friends and influence people – Dale Carnegie
Rich dad poor dad – Robert Kiyosaki & Sharon Lechter”.
Why social media and not any other industry?
“Well, I also have been doing web development for the last 3 years, which except its marketing aspect has nothing to do with social media, but you’re right, my main focus is in fact social media and I don’t really remember choosing it as a path. I always had an interest in it and I was always creating some sort of content, I only at some point decided to take it more seriously as it was something I was already doing and enjoying a lot. Another reason is that if I ever want to move to a different industry, I can take advantage of the audience I’ve built by promoting any new business to them”.
How long have you been in the business?
“Theoretically one month, however I spent the last 7 years working towards it through experience in similar projects”.
Where did you learn all the necessary skills?
“I never went to university, I dropped out of school at 17. Everything I learned that I know today is from online courses and self taught through experience. I started projects where I visualised the end goal and slowly worked towards it, whilst learning at the same time; if I was ever stuck on something I watched a YouTube tutorial on how to do it”.
What do you do in your free time as a hobby or to relax and get away from work?
“I love travelling, exploring new places and cultures. There’s something uplifting and magical about these experiences when you get to see the world from other people’s eyes. It brings a carefree feeling which allows me to forget about the responsibilities I’m faced with on a daily basis, kind of like I’m a kid learning the world again. I also love fashion and getting creative with outfits. My clothes and shoes take the most space in my house and my favourite items have a special display. Another one of my hobbies is running; it allows me to stay in shape whilst giving myself some time on my own to think about new ideas and solutions. I would recommend everyone to develop three hobbies; one that keeps you creative, one that keeps you in shape and one that makes you money.”