The 2023 30 Under 30 Asia Content Creators And Influencers Educating And Entertaining The Public

May 18, 2023
The 2023 30 Under 30 Asia Content Creators And Influencers Educating And Entertaining The Public

Simran Kaur and Sonya Gupthan call their journey an “unlearning process,” overcoming insecurities that they didn’t have the right background, education or experience to make investments. The two Aucklanders, friends since they were five, started their podcast Girls That Invest based on conversations at university about investing in stocks, funds and property.

“We are two young South Asian women that talk about things that are not what you expect someone in finance to talk about.”

Simran Kaur, Cofounder of Girls That Invest

The duo’s podcast was in the top 1% of most shared shows globally on Spotify at the end of last year, according to the audio streaming platform, two and a half years after the first episode. Kaur attributes its success to their relatability as hosts. “We are two young South Asian women that talk about things that are not what you expect someone in finance to talk about … we talk about Birkin bags, we talk about Love Island,” Kaur says. “It makes it seem [to listeners], ‘If they can do it, I can do it.’”

Kaur and Gupthan are among this year’s Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia honorees in the Media, Marketing & Advertising category who are using their platform to educate as well as entertain.

Kaur sees the podcast—which touts content “without the finance bros, without the jargon and without the condensing tones”—as an entry point into investing. She and Gupthan have added a six-week investment course three times a year meant to create a roadmap for financial freedom. Kaur wrote a book (also called Girls That Invest), released last August, that now ranks No. 15 among Amazon’s best sellers in stock market investing.

Gupthan says her own investing barrier was a fear of making mistakes, and honesty about their struggles has helped them reach their devoted audience. “When explaining things, [we think] ‘How can we make it fun? How can we keep the language inclusive to our peer group? And that's really worked,” she says.

Financial literacy is a topic which India’s Sharan Hegde is also tackling on his platform. The former management consultant began uploading content on personal finance during the pandemic. Finance with Sharan, his social media account, has attracted more than 3.5 million people on Youtube and Instagram. Incorporating comedy and costumes, Hegde aims to make personal-finance information fun and easy to understand. Hegde also founded the 1% Club last year, an online subscription that offers tutorials and tools to help people with financial planning; it has more than 10,000 users. Last year he was one of the first influencers in India to launch his own NFT.

Influencers On The Rise

Focusing on entertaining content, several influencers on this year’s list recorded a fast growth of followers in just a few years. One example is South Korean influencer Wonjeong Seo. In just one year, Seo amassed 30 million followers on TikTok. After uploading his first video in October 2020, Seo, who goes by @ox_zung, now has more than 50 million followers, making him the second-most followed TikTok account in South Korea after K-pop sensation BTS. His rapid rise earned him a spot on the social media giant's first-ever global list of 50 noteworthy TikTokers. Seo also posts content on YouTube, where he has 6 million followers. His content is usually parodies of viral videos and features his catchphrase “mama.”

Meanwhile in Thailand, YouTuber Nutticha Namwong, more commonly known as Kaykai Salaider, creates videos about fashion and daily life. She was reportedly the first person in Thailand to reach 10 million YouTube subscribers. At present, she has 16.3 million YouTube subscribers and 8.7 million followers on TikTok. Her popularity also landed her a lead role in the Thai film The Rocket Angels, which was released last year.

Artificial Intelligence

When it comes to digital marketing, entrepreneurs on this year’s 30 Under 30 Asia list are making sure to stay ahead of the competition by employing artificial intelligence.

Singapore’s Joshua Wong and Lin Hui Low say their artificial intelligence-based content startup Hypotenuse AI has a more targeted approach than ChatGPT. Its service specifically helps brands come up with marketing materials such as blogs and product descriptions. According to the company, its HypoChat bot sources information real-time from the internet, and can also fact check to ensure accuracy. Since launching in 2020, Hypotenuse AI has attracted investors including January Capital and Y Combinator.

In Bangladesh, Tasfia Tasbin and Rubaiyat Farhan cofounded The startup offers digital marketing solutions for small- and mid-sized enterprises, allowing firms to quickly generate ad copy and seamlessly cross-post on social media. The company’s subscription-based app uses machine-learning models, which can recognize patterns, to make predictions on an ad’s performance and peak conditions to post. It also has a massive consumer dataset to help businesses automate and optimize social media ads, create content and reach receptive audiences.

In India, Mobavenue is a marketing- and advertising-tech solutions provider that helps brands to grow through its suite of proprietary products, including an AI-based media-buying platform and data-focused marketing intelligence. Founded by Tejas Rathod and Kunal Kothari in 2017, Mobavenue is a bootstrapped company, growing without the help of external capital. It serves 300 clients worldwide, boasts annual revenue of more than $20 million, and is profitable. Rathod is an angel in the Indian startup ecosystem with 50 investments in tech, AI, and new media companies.

Niche Content

30 under 30 Asia entrepreneurs are also providing new platforms to meet the burgeoning demand for niche content. With his startup STAGE, Parveen Singhal sought to create the “Netflix for Bharat,” a streaming service suited to Indian audiences across the country and its cultures, including films in dialects like Harvanyi and Rajasthani. Since its inception two years ago, Noida-based STAGE has more than 1 million downloads on Google Play and cofounder Singhal claims to have netted more than 200,000 paid subscribers. Singhal originally cofounded the company alongside Shashank Vaishnav as Wittyfeed, a viral content platform like Buzzfeed, but then pivoted to video. It’s since raised a total $9.7 million in funding.

In Singapore, Kai Yuan NgMatthew Chew, and Cheah Wenqi cofounded Our Grandfather Story (OGS) with Carine Tan. Originally a photojournalism project, OGS is now a digital publishing company that features timeless and overlooked stories across Singapore and Southeast Asia. The quartet have also launched the parent company UNFOLD Asia, a media group that seeks to entertain and educate Southeast Asian audiences through creative storytelling. Its media brands—OGS, Something Private, Ribbit (formerly O+), and nOm—reach over 10 million viewers in total every month. Its UNFOLD Studio produces original factual, unscripted and animated programming for international networks and brands. Its UNFOLD Creators is a curated creative network that brings together content creators in the region.

Additional reporting by Danielle Keeton-Olsen

To learn more about these young creators, influencers and media entrepreneurs read our complete Media, Marketing & Advertising list here – and be sure to check out our full Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia 2023 coverage here.

Source: forbes