Schoolboy named SA’s Social Media Star of 2014.
Nadav Ossendryver, who founded the Kruger Sightings website when he was just 15, was presented with the award for building his wildlife sightings service into the most viewed YouTube channel based in South Africa.
According to the SA Social Media Landscape 2015 research study launched by Fuseware and World Wide Worx at a conference in Johannesburg, the Kruger Sightings YouTube channel had reached more than 75-million views by the end of August 2014. This week, it passed the 80-million mark. The next biggest South African-based YouTube channel has had 53-million views.
The previous South African YouTube leaders, drummer Cobus Potgieter and teen-appeal comedian Caspar Lee, are no longer based in South Africa. Ossendryver, who is now 18, is currently preparing to write his matric exams.
Presenting the award after the release of the research findings today, World Wide Worx managing director Arthur Goldstuck said Ossendryver was an example to big brand marketers of how to build a community through compelling content.
“It also proves that one individual with a powerful vision can achieve what even the biggest marketing budgets cannot,” added Goldstuck.
““People are drawn to passion,” said Ossendryver. “If you make videos on topics you love, those people will watch. I have always been in love with wildlife and have wanted to share that love through the means of sharing people's experiences.”
He pointed out that his YouTube channel did not exist in isolation, but was a hub of activity across several social media platforms, going under the brand of Latest Sightings.
“It’s easy to see what he did right, but incredibly difficult to replicate the model,” said Mike Wronski, CEO of data analytics company Fuseware, which analysed the YouTube data for the study. “It takes a combination of understanding the topic and the community on the one hand, and on the other coming up with both great content and a great content-sharing model.”
The SA Social Media Landscape 2015 study shows that YouTube has become the second most popular social media platform in South Africa, growing by 53% in the past year to reach 7,2-million active users.