Born in Pakistan, Faisal Shafique moved to the US at the age of 15 with his parents, and even though he couldn’t at that point speak English, he didn’t let that stop him, and instead through hard work and study developed the communication skills which have allowed him to get where he is today.
Faisal was expected to follow in the path of many others in his family, and become a doctor. After graduating high school in 2010, he attended a community college, while working with his uncle at a clinic, at the same time improving his communication skills by way of taking phone calls. However, in 2013, he left his job in order to help his parents with their petrol station.
One of his colleagues at the clinic put him onto Instagram, and suggested that it might be the next big thing in social media. It got Faisal thinking, and after a short while he devised the idea of posting interesting facts on his page. He kept working at the family petrol station, and studied for his Associate Degree, but little by little he began investing money in Instagram.
Faisal is a very early example of what we now know as an “influencer”: someone with a large social media following who is viewed as having some sort of influence. Unlike now, where there is an app for everything, in those early days, it wasn’t known how to raise followers quickly. Faisal did his research, and found a few small pages which sold shout outs on eBay, and so he decided to reach out to them. He paid people to post his content, in order to grow his followers.
It was an expensive venture. Often Faisal would spend his entire pay cheque, and max out his credit cards. His parents objected strongly, but he had more than a hunch that this was an opportunity he didn’t want to get away from him. He continued creating content and sharing it other pages, similar to his own in size, so that after a while he no longer had to spend money on growing his site.
It was a gamble which paid off. Instagram started to become a massive platform, and Faisal began to receive opportunities to sell posts himself.
Before too long, Faisal’s strong following established him as a big page, which thereby gave him the opportunity to share his content with anybody he wanted. He started a second page in order to grow to the same level by using his first page. Over time, his followers continued to grow organically, and his network expanded. His investments have also started making a profit, as he he’s been invited to promote companies such as Game Of War, Mobile Strike, Fashion Nova, Fit Tea, and so on, helping them get sales through his social media network, which now spans more than 25 million followers spread over various pages on social media.
It doesn’t stop there. Faisal has ventured into eCommerce, building a store and continuing to grow it over the next few months. He is now looking to take his entrepeneurial skills even further outside of social media, into the world of music. When asked by The Urban Twist why he wanted to make moves in the music scene, Faisal said,
I have always had a love for music and now that I have built such a following online I would love to share some of what I have been doing with them. Making music is a breath of fresh air away from everything else.
You can follow Faisal Shafique on Instagram – maybe you already do – on the following accounts: FACT, Reactions, EPIC, Clothes, Ghetto, Ugh, smh, and CRAFTS. Be sure to follow Faisal’s personal Instagram account too, and also check out his official website.
If nothing else, Faisal Shafique’s story shows us that with determination, anything is possible. We just have to keep at it.