42-Year-Old Man Who Turns Instagram Photos Into Phone Case Says He Makes N138bn Yearly
- In 2011, Wesley Ng received the inspiration to customise people's phone cases with their Instagram photos
- Ng said he approached top Instagram influencers and asked them if they would like the idea of customising their phone cases
- He said the idea was the beginning of a company that generates about $300 million in annual sales
Wesley Ng got inspired as he scrolled through his Instagram page in 2011.
People shared photos online from their phones. He said allowing them to turn their pictures into customised phone cases appealed to him.
A multimillion-dollar idea born from Instagram
The idea began with Castfiy, a Hong Kong-based tech accessories brand that Ng and Ronald Yeung, his co-founder, launched 12 years ago.
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The company said Casetify has gone on to sell more than 15 million phone cases, earning $300 million in annual sales last year.
According to Ng, Castify was one of the first brands to be born out of Instagram, and the company grew from there.
Turning the company into a multimillion-dollar brand meant the company leveraged the then-growing social media culture of influencers.
Ng said during the early days of Castify, he sent messages to anyone he saw with many followers on Instagram, asking them if they would like to turn their photos into customised phone cases.
"We figured out if we get these people to buy our products, [and] if they liked it, they will likely share it to their followers. [That's] Instagram influencer strategy ... we've been practicing it since Day 1. And it's been essential to us."
He said the timing was crucial in Castify's strategy. The influencer strategy is now common among firms trying to grow their brands with a small marketing budget.
According to CNBC, they are also the first adopters of the strategy, meaning less competition.
The Instagram influencer business model made Castify visible, and it extended to genuine celebrities.
The company recently featured posts from Kylie Jenner and sales by Drake and Olivia Rodrigo. It also maintains partnerships with global brands such as Disney and NASA.
More formidable challenges on social media
Ng says the company's competition is more challenging now than before but adds that innovation makes it easier to stand out in the online marketplace.
The company recently decided to detach itself from Instagram and deploy to new social media platforms like TikTok, where trends are found.
It is now offering a collection of designs on TikTok as Ng says the platform is just a natural extension for the company.
The company's product offerings include various accessories beyond phone cases, and it has moved away from selling online.
Woman who built her online business selling used bags now makes N36.5m weekly
Legit.ng reported that Nica Yusay’s online purse store amazes her with how quickly her vintage bags sell out, making the 29-year-old think there is something wrong with her website.
A frugal spender, Yusay, developed the knack for finding good purses at half their retail prices when she was young, gathering her collection of used bags over time but never believing she could make money from the skill.
In January last year, she took a leap of faith. She spent about $15,000 on luxury bags to resell on sites like Poshmark and Depop after she posted a video of how to bargain prices on TikTok, which earned her over 10,000 followers almost instantly. The video has garnered over three million views.