Our modern-day and age is growing increasingly digitized every day.
Moving parallel to that is the fact that education is gradually becoming more readily available to the greater population. With that in mind, it only makes sense for the hybrid of education and the youth’s wit to come to life.
The student meme-community is one that I have been fascinated by in recent times.
Particularly when I looked at a ”close to home” Instagram page that I follow: @cry_at_up.
In the beginning I was a prospective student who was keen on finding out about what student life was all about. @cry_at_up gave me the ‘’exclusive’’ access I was looking for.
@cry_at_up is ‘an Instagram page run by students for the students’ who aim to provide TUKS students with ‘authentic and relatable content’ to ease up the seriousness around University.
The @cry_at_up account was ‘officially started on 24 March 2019’ and has since continued to grow.
The account is currently sitting at 12.7k followers on IG.
This is particularly interesting when you dive a little deeper into some of the other South African University meme-accounts:
In some instances, @cry_at_up has grown to almost, if not more than, a third of it’s rivals’ following in as little as a fifth of the time.
So how do you create a successful meme account?
Thankfully for us, the @cry_at_up Team was willing to give us an inside scoop on how they run their page.
And so, if you haven’t guessed it already, this week’s topic is all about memes.
As with anything, the most important step to take is the first. Without it you won’t get anywhere.
SO, HOW DID @CRY_AT_UP START?
The account – as we know it today – started off from ‘the same module WhatsApp group’ which then rerouted into a ‘banter group’, because of the admins’ unwavering commitment to providing students with their daily dose of humor.
With the banter group formed, it wasn’t long until ’one of the very first admins’ would propose the idea of starting a meme account.
From there, the members of the WhatsApp group would plan and put forward ideas for the eventual creation of their pride and joy: @cry_at_up.
‘When the account first started, it was only about making people laugh and sharing the best and worst things about what it is to be a student’.
Since then the account has grown beyond the surface level of humor and has taken a dive into the areas of ‘memes, student life and student health’.
All this goes into their pursuit of providing a well-rounded feed to enhance the lives of their student followers.
With any social media account there is always a pivotal point in its history where the account begins to attract attention.
In the case of @cry_at_up it couldn’t have happened any better way:
Their magical moment of realization came when their ‘own lecturers began using our memes in class and referencing our page’.
According to the admins, the lecturers ‘had no idea’ that the very creators of the memes that they were referencing were – in fact – seated in the lecture hall.
’It felt like we were being seen on a larger scale for the first time’.
BUILDING A COMMUNITY
Naturally, as a result of experiencing increased exposure the account’s following grew and a community was created.
For @cry_at_up, their ‘biggest motivation throughout’ has been their followers.
The team regularly receives a flooding stream of ‘messages from kids that are super appreciative’ for the hard work that the admins put in.
‘It’s both deeply encouraging and humbling’.
Because of this, the team strives to continually produce content that is aimed at enriching the lives of its audience.
The hidden gem of the page though is hidden in its DM’s.
The admins say that this is definitely the most rewarding part of their ‘‘job’’.
’Getting feedback on how people are enjoying the page and hearing that they really like what we’re doing is incredible. On top of that, being able to talk about mental health has led to some really uplifting, meaningful conversations with some of the most fantastic people you’ll ever meet’.
Ultimately when it comes down to building a successful social media account it’s about the content that you put out.
The team is a firm believer in ‘being consistent, creative and intentional’ regarding their content production.
Without those three elements, any hopes of building a following will fade. It is for this reason that the admins continually strive towards ‘producing all of our own content’.
’We value originality.’
This is precisely the motivation behind the team assembling ‘in the study center – an hour before class – to look around at what’s relevant to TUKS students in the moment’.
’Creativity isn’t something you can schedule’.
So, if you are looking to start up a successful social media account, then be prepared to be kept on your toes.
But now creating the content is only half of the job:
It still needs to be posted to be able to hang-out in ‘‘the feed’’.
Uploading posts and replying to comments is definitely not as simple as typing a caption and clicking POST.
Especially because the account carries an association of sorts with the University of Pretoria, it is absolutely critical that the content is debated and thoroughly discussed.
Providing quality, relatable content whilst still not shedding any form of bad light onto the university or students can be a difficult balancing act.
It is with this in mind that the one admin – in particular – has a ‘folder of exactly 924 meme templates’ on their phone when I got to chat to him.
Variety and options are important ingredients.
‘To give an example, there’s a folder of exactly 924 possible meme templates on my phone right now that gets updated daily.’
It goes without saying that the content you will find on their page is fresh and exciting.
Even more so are the posts they make for their student audience:
’We love promoting events and putting out student requested ads’.
This team of anonymous admins wants to ’promote your business and add to your student experience’ to give you the best possible starting point for any venture of yours.
’If we can provide something valuable for our followers every day, then we’re doing something right.’
Because @cry_at_up places a ‘huge focus’ on its students, replying to their followers’ DM’s is an essential part of their process.
In fact, ‘putting out content and answering DMs can easily take up to 3 hours daily’ not to mention the other 2 to 3 hours for replying to stories.
These factors combined can make it challenging to effectively time manage at varsity.
Related: Student Time Management Strategies
You can be expecting nothing less than a consistent feed of relatable content that the team ’feels proud about putting out’.
In addition to this they also have a ’huge list of new projects’ that they are looking at launching soon so stay tuned for those announcements.
ADVICE FOR NEWBIES
We all have to start somewhere.
Thankfully for us, @cry_at_up has gained some knowledge and experience in the world of social media.
Here are some additional nuggets of wisdom that they want to pass on to those aspiring ‘‘Social Media Influencers’’ amongst us:
- Decide on what your intentions are from the start
- Be genuine
- Maximize your free time to produce more content
- Post regularly
- Building a social media following is a marathon
A PARTING THOUGHT
‘Making the time and creating through the lens you use daily is the most important thing.’
If you haven’t already, go check out the @cry_at_up Instagram page.
If there is anything else that you want to know about them or ask, drop them a DM and they’ll be sure to get back to you.
A member of the @cry_at_up team is running another page: @com_bustion
Be sure to give it a scope!
I WANT TO KNOW FROM YOU:
What ‘’Interesting Interview’’ do you want to see next?
Let me know in the comments down below!