Written by Damien Womersley
That is when they turned to me and both said - YES! I was thrilled. Over the moon with joy is an extreme understatement for what I was feeling. I had felt not only accepted but now I had been given a purpose...
Hi, I'm Damien. I am 21 years old and I am a Social Media Assistant at mykagami.
MY STORY IN SOCIAL MEDIA
I've dabbled a lot in social media... from a young age in fact. There's something about interacting with people and creating a community that I just love. I have always been intrigued by the concept of bringing people together, from different backgrounds, into one place where unity, friendships and bonds can be made. Or perhaps where they have one thing in common and can relate to each other through that one brand or that one person they've grown very fond of.
My first interaction with social media was YouTube. This is not through watching, but creating. Trying to build a brand for myself and make myself known. Every kid dreams of being "YouTube Famous” nowadays but when I started, it wasn't as common as it is now for a 14 year old to make videos. So the Christmas after my 14th birthday (which is in November) I got a capture card. A Hauppauge HD PVR 2 and that is when I fell in love with the idea of creating content. I learned how to edit, how to make thumbnails, banners and I dabbled in animation for a while. Admittedly, I didn’t achieve YouTube fame with it, but the dream was still there. The idea that I could create stuff from my own mind that people could bond over, relate to and laugh with each other about just had a grip on me.
I run a very small twitch channel currently, where I stream and interact and this is where I have started to see a small amount of growth. It is still a small community but nevertheless the chat makes me happy. People will come in and say hello, then they will be joined by others and without me even noticing, they are having a full blown conversation. I have always liked the idea that people would watch because of my personality and not only the games I play. I feel like I have truly found that in these people. I have managed to create my own little discord server as well where the community I have built can come to chill out, talk with me, talk to others and post their ideas. So for this, it is only onwards and upwards.
WHERE DID I DISCOVER I COULD WORK IN SOCIAL MEDIA?
It all started in the lockdown of 2020. So for nearly the whole of that year... no McDonalds... I'm sorry but I had to say it. I was sitting in my bedroom with my partner, just chilling, watching some YouTube when an ad came up from a guy promoting his webinar where at the end of it, they ask you to pay your ENTIRE life savings for a course which, unfortunately ... I can't afford (I can't tell you how many webinars I have sat through only to get hit with that bombshell). Nevertheless, I was curious, so I looked at his channel and looked at some of his videos. He was in the business of an SMMA. A Social Media Marketing Agency...
If you’re wondering “Damien... What is a social media marketing agency?” Well let me tell you that I have no clue... got you! I'm only playing.
An SMMA is where you yourself offer services to help promote a company's product or service, through the use of social media. The aim is to reach the maximum audience potential through social channels, to drive sales for that company, in exchange for a monthly service fee. Make no mistake though, you are not working FOR that company, you are working WITH that company. Essentially they have bought your service to promote their service.
Anyway, back to what I was saying. I was intrigued. I was 19 years old, I was in furlough barely getting paid anything for the month. So I thought, if I try this maybe I could quit my current job after lockdown and do this full time. Obviously, you see people making so much money from it which usually hooks people to the idea. However, for me the money was a bonus. The idea that I could work on my own time, when I want to, being my own boss is what had me hooked. I wouldn't be stuck to a weekly schedule having to get the bus for 50 minutes to work and back (when we came back out of lockdown). Now, you might be asking yourself... Well, did he succeed? I am here to tell you... no, no I did not, but I kept trying and by the time I had to go back to work I had just stopped trying. Not because I had given up.
You see, I dedicated hours of my day watching videos, taking notes, joining webinars. When I realised, these are hours I am not getting back when there are important things that the videos and the webinars aren't even teaching me. It seemed that the only way to get that info was through the expensive course they wanted me to buy. So I told myself to go back to work and to find a job that I could be comfortable with. A job that I could love. Now I can safely say I think I have found that job and here’s how it happened.
HOW DID I FIND MYKAGAMI? OR BETTER YET... HOW DID THEY FIND ME?
Fast forward 2 years, I'm 21, living on my own, unemployed, barely scraping by, on Universal Credit. But how did I come across this amazing opportunity? You see, I was brought up in the care system. So I was a foster child. Not anymore now, not since I was 18. When you're brought up in the care system, you are switched from a social worker to a PA. PA means Personal Advisor by the way. The PA's job is to help you get accommodated to adult life. They are there for any questions you have or any help that you need. I have had mine since I was 18 and continue to have her until I am 25 unless I decide I don't like her anymore. Just kidding.
Since the end of lockdown I have had 2 other jobs. A sales assistant, and as bar staff. Neither of which I enjoyed. When I told my PA that I was unemployed and struggling to keep up with my bills, she suggested that I consider a programme run through Universal Credit, called Kickstarter.. It's for people who aren't employed but it is a scheme where companies will take you on in an intern role. I thought... WHY DID I NOT HEAR ABOUT THIS SOONER? So what did I do? I turned to my good old and quite possibly only friend Google and I searched. 'Universal Credit Kickstarter Jobs'. The list was endless...
Admittedly, I applied for a couple because I just had the mindset that I needed a job. There was a Trainee Duty Manager, a Trainee Manager, Even a children's entertainment events manager. I scrolled for ages then I found one. I read it... 'social media kickstarter'. That is when I had my own little flashback to lockdown. I read about how I would be working on social media for a company and be provided the training to do so. So I applied.
2 days later, I got a text asking me to join a zoom call. This was with the company who sent out the application, the people who would give me the opportunity to meet the creators of mykagami. This call was just a little chat, things about me, things about them. Then at the end of the call, they said to me "we have got a call on Friday with all the bosses who you could be placed with". So I was excited, nervous because I have a tendency to make myself look like a bit of an idiot at times but still excited. I was quiet on the previous calls but that is not the real me. The real me is loud, full of energy, pretty much in your face. So that is the version of me that I decided to show the bosses.
On the day of this call, I was in the process of packing to move out of my flat and move in with my girlfriend and her family. So my adrenaline was already high because I was rushing about. Admittedly, I didn't want to sit down. I joined the call a couple minutes late due to packing up, and instantly BOOM! Camera On! Microphone On! Oh, I was ready for this call. The guy running the call instantly shouted to me "DAMIEN WELCOME! DAMIEN TELL US A BIT ABOUT YOURSELF!" And all I can say is, the energy he put into that one line, gave me enough energy to bounce back. "HI I'M DAMIEN, 21, I LIKE GAMING, BASKETBALL, SKATEBOARDING, I AM AN ACTOR AND A MUSICIAN". What? I'm a simple person ok? There's not much to me. But to my surprise, a lot of people had raised their hands to speak to me but the first ones were the amazing Yo and Diana from mykagami. So, I was put into a breakroom with them so we could all have a little chat.
MY INTERVIEW WITH MYKAGAMI
This was it... my time to shine. To show this company that I was what they were looking for (not to toot my own horn or anything). I think I did just that. We were there on a call and honestly I felt a bit on the spot. I was looking at Yo, Yo was looking at me while I was switching to Diana while she was looking at me. There was a lot of looking at each other ok. We got talking and I told them about myself. More in-depth than the mumbo jumbo I had just shouted at everyone. I heard a bit about the company which intrigued me because I had never heard of that concept before.
If there is one thing that you should know is that I am a very practical person. So when they said it would be a case of editing, artwork, you know areas I already had experience in and I loved doing, I was happy. Not to say I wasn't already happy but you get what I mean. Nevertheless, we just chatted for a while, kind of went off topic sometimes and just started talking about ourselves but that's the whole premise of an interview. Yes, they see if you are a good fit for the job and you see if you click with them. See if you won't constantly be thinking "not this guy again". And at the end of the conversation I received two yeses from both Yo and Diana. Oh my god, I felt like I was on stage and Simon Cowell had just told me I was going to Hollywood. I was over the moon when I heard that they were happy with me. I remember running to my girlfriend and being like "they like me! they actually like me!" after so many failed interviews and jobs I hated. I had finally found people I was more than happy to work for and a job I knew I was going to love and it is all thanks to Yo and Diana for giving me this amazing opportunity that I will forever be grateful for.
Coming soon: My First Week with MyKagami