Abiolu Odunayo, otherwise known Shewenzi is a digital marketer, dancer and entrepreneur. He speaks with SEGUN ADEBAYO about his career and life.
Why did you choose to become a digital practitioner, dancer and entrepreneur, all at the same time? What was the attraction?
When I was growing up, I’ve always believed in continuous growth. And, when you look at how Nigeria is currently structured and the system we have, you just have to learn how to multi-task and be into different areas of business in order to make more money. So, what I did was to convert what I love doing into what could fetch me more money.
So this is not about passion but for the fear of never wanting to go broke?
It’s the passion for me basically because looking at it, whatever area of business/skills one wants to venture into as an entrepreneur, one still has to invest financially and also put one’s time into it. At the end of the day, one will end up making more money. When one is hungry for success one will be passionate about everything one does. Though as an entrepreneur there are the good and bad days, but consistency is the major key.
Combining all of these jobs could come with challenges, particularly when it comes down to satisfying one interest while ignoring another. How do you manage to attend to all these at same time?
Yes! I would be telling a lie if I say there are no challenges. Shuffling between social media campaigns, making dance videos for songs, and then getting bookings from clients for our car wash service has not been easy. First of all, keeping up with time in Lagos is really disturbing because one can never predict the traffic and other unforeseen circumstances. This is something clients won’t understand. The moment one is 30 minutes late they see one as unserious. One needs to be up and doing. We can’t complain.
As a young man with his hands in many pies, how do you make out time to be creative?
I’m the type of person that jots things down immediately an idea drops in my mind and go back to it later. So being creative, for me, is quite easy because it’s something I don’t force myself to do. When it comes to creating content for brands and even dance videos and my mobile car wash, it still falls back to using my skill to help my own business; so it’s something I enjoy.
Tell us about this mobile car wash. How did you develop this concept as it seems to be novel in this part of the world?
I’ve been on the Island for over four years and I see how people are really stressed out and lazy about taking their cars to the car wash to clean up, and also most of these car wash sites are usually filled up with cars. They tend to rush at cars in order to make more money, that’s how the idea of coming to your comfort zone came to life. So anyone could book us ahead and we come to you with our customised bus which has all the equipment and even a tank of water in it to do proper detailing and cleaning for your car.
You call it VIP mobile car wash; does that mean only the rich can afford it?
It’s for everyone basically; anybody will be surprised at what we charge. Why we called it “VIP” is because that’s what all our clients are to us. Everyone is very important to us, so that’s why your car deserves a VIP touch and treatment.
You are also into digital marketing. What prepared you for this journey?
It started back during my secondary school days as I really love to surf the net. I’m mostly online either working on how to build my followers or using it to make friends basically. I never thought I could even make money from just tweeting and creating awareness online about a product or about newly released music for upcoming artistes and top artistes. My journey started with politics; I was just called up one afternoon during election time that they wanted me to publish contents on my twitter platform. I was actually surprised because they asked me how much do I charge?
I didn’t even know what to say because I’ve never made money from social media before then. After that, they offered to pay me N50,000. At that point, it was like they were paying me N1million. I published the content and got paid immediately. It was still a shock to me; it was after the candidate won that I then looked at it like “wow! So I could make this type of money by just tweeting about my opinions and creating content on happenings. Later, I ventured into other things by doing internship with companies and being their social media guy. I started building social media accounts for people as well and getting paid. It was really fun for me because I was enjoying it. In the long run brands started reaching out to me
With the number of clients and brands you have worked with, is it safe to say you are one of the richest on the job?
Did you just say richest? I won’t say I’m the richest because if Dangote is still working hard to make money, then who am I? I can only say I’m comfortable and I’m making money and that’s all that matters
You are also a dancer, what led you into dancing?
Dance has been my thing right from when I was a kid. I attended parties and I was always the cynosure of all eyes. Back then, a friend of mine, Bmax, would make a video of me dancing and I’ll post it on my social media platforms. People really enjoyed that part of me, so I took it serious by joining online challenges where you get to make a 1 minute video of you dancing to a particular song and then the highest person with engagements and likes gets to win. I always end up taking the first position or second and win money. The first money I got from dancing challenge online was N50,000. It was quite a lot and ever since then it’s been nice dancing to songs and getting paid.
At what point in your life did the idea of dance set in?
Funnily enough, I never had the idea of being a dancer. It was not something that crossed my mind. It’s something that just happened, maybe because of the types of friends I hang around with. They are always telling me to take it serious.
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