It is important for you to be ‘you’, says YouTube influencer Prajakta Koli
Funny, witty, unconventional, and oh! not so politically correct, yet right! That is perhaps the first impression one has when they interact with the ‘Most Sane’ YouTuber, Prajakta Koli.
The 25-year-old, who started her personal YouTube blog in 2015, has a whopping 2 million subscriber base.
“It is all about being consistent with your content and being yourself. You can only get to a certain extent if you copy others. Your audience will know when you copy someone or if you use a fake accent. It is absolutely essential for you to be ‘you’ on your videos and slowly people will start to resonate with you, if you regularly connect with them.”
Expressing her views on important issues such as mental health, girl child education and hate speech, Prajakta believes conversations are important, and that we need to speak to our audience, rather than preach.
Addressing issues that matter
Prajakta, the YouTube sensation, believes the internet is the medium for gen X to drive conversations and shed light on issues that matter.
The youth spend a lot of time on the internet and are losing touch with friends. Today, a seven-year-old is on YouTube and the more time kids spend on the internet, the more they are becoming distant from real-life conversations, said Prajakta.
In 2017, on World Mental Health Day, Prajakta started her campaign —#PledgeToBeMe — to address mental health issues among the youth. Within 10 days, she received over 8,000 mails. And thus began her journey of addressing issues like body shaming, self-image issues, and depression through video blogs.
“Today being depressed has become ‘very cool’. A lot of these kids are not even clinically tested and it is just a teenage phase, yet they openly say that they are undergoing depression. It is because kids are exposed to terms such as anxiety and panic attacks. Hence, I feel it is important for influencers to talk about depression and try to erase the stigma around mental illness and create awareness about the gravity of mental illness,” she said.
An advocate for body positivity, Prajakta discourages the youth from stereotyping an individual based on their “shape and size”. Terming it as an example of “hate speech”, she believes comments have become so casual that we don’t realise the damage it causes to one’s self-esteem.
So much so, that Prajakta makes a conscious effort to be ‘normal’ in her videos, devoid of makeup, wearing casual clothes or even pyjamas, discussing issues in a “relatable” way.
Her audience ranges from teenagers to a 50-year-olds. Refusing to tie down to the genre of content, Prajakta believes that being a social media influencer comes with a huge share of responsibility.
“I always try to make content such that no one is uncomfortable when they watch it. I make a conscious effort to not cross the line,” she said.
Prajakta is also the Indian ambassador for YouTube’s global initiative ‘Creators for Change’ along with 50 other inspiring creators from over 16 countries.
YourStory's annual extravaganza TechSparks brings together the best and the brightest from the startup ecosystem, corporate world, policymakers and, of course, the investor community. Over the years, it has grown to become India's most loved tech and startup platform for knowledge sharing and networking. The ninth edition of TechSparks also marks YourStory's 10th anniversary. A big thank you for all your support over the years and keep reading and watching YourStory.