Inside The Spotlight with Syafiqa (SYA) Noor
Emcee Charmaine had a fun and interesting podcast session with Syafiqa, also known as @Syapls, a popular TikToker with a large 275,000 following.
Charmaine had a lively conversation with Sya on how to succeed on social media platforms:
📲Sya’s start in content creation: she started her career at SGAG, a popular social media platform in Singapore, where she illustrated memes. She mentioned that her parents gifted her an iPad, which empowered her to pursue her passion for art and content creation.
📲Creating a viral TikTok video: Sya shared her secret to creating a viral TikTok video, which is, it’s important to stay updated with the latest trends and challenges on the platform, and to put her own unique spin on them. She also emphasized the importance of creating content that resonates with your audience.
📲Knowing your audience: Sya mentioned that she knows her audience inside and out, and that she always keeps their preferences and interests in mind when creating content. She also stressed the importance of engaging with your audience and building a genuine connection with them.
📲Being an extrovert on social media: According to Sya, being an extrovert is not a requirement to make it on social media. She mentioned that introverts can also be successful on social media by finding their niche and creating content that resonates with their personality and interests.
Highlights of the podcast:
Charmaine: You started your journey as a meme creator. So tell me : were you always drawing from young?
Sya: My hobby has always been drawing since I was a kid. Yeah, but the thing is, would you like to know what I studied in school before?
Charmaine: Was it not art? Did you score a grade A plus for art?
Sya: I studied Food Science and Nutrition.
Charmaine: Food Science? Wait, so let me get this right. TikToker Sya could have been a nutritionist.
Sya: I could have been working in the hospital..
Charmaine: You can dish out nutritional nutrition advice right now!
So you started out doing food science. Were you drawing pictures of food?
Sya: Okay, the thing is, I won’t mention my school.
Charmaine: Better not, since you say you return a lot of your knowledge to the classroom.
Sya: I was basically doodling in class. Who didn’t, right? But when I do that, I use digital art to doodle from secondary school.
Charmaine: Okay, you started there.
Sya: So during my poly days, my parents gave me a drawing tablet.
Charmaine: You’re so cute ….. your parents saw the talent in you?
Sya: I posted my comics on Twitter, and it went viral. And that’s how I got the job from SGAG. So three months after I graduated, I joined SGAG.
Charmaine: Wow. So somebody came knocking on your door. Fortunate situation, right? People are looking for jobs now.
So SGAG called you, and you started to create memes with SGAG. How did you transition that journey from meme creator to now content creator?
Sya: Well, the funny thing is that I didn’t pursue content creation. I just fell into it. Back in 2018, I was still a meme creator, and my boss wanted to venture out with TikTok. So he gathered a bunch of people who watched Vine, and I was one of the people who watched Vine.
Charmaine: That feels like so long ago…. it was so hot and then it died.
Sya: Yes. So by then, I think Vine died, but TikTok was rising. And they needed someone to learn TikTok. So basically, I was thrown into TikTok. We explored a lot.
Charmaine: Are you a dancer?
Sya: I wasn’t a dancer. I guess from learning how to TikTok for SGAG, I also venture out on my own to understand the platform better.
Charmaine: How do you learn how to do TikTok? Are you on TikTok all the time? How do you know what’s trending? Give us the secret sauce.
Sya: I consume a lot of TikTok. Have you seen those TikTok templates? That trend … for example, music TikTok, then you just create your own content based on the music. You put in photos, videos, etc, these kinds of things. So that’s how I started at first, but I guess it went viral because some people really liked it and I focused more on a slightly niche topic.
Charmaine: Okay, so for those people who are first time listeners to our podcast, what kind of content do you post on TikTok?
Sya: Well, I basically do Singapore centric content. focusing more on Malay and hijabi content. But mostly it’s Singapore because I think that’s where everyone could relate the most.
Charmaine: Do you remember your first viral moment? I’m sure you know that video that took off and you’re like, ‘Oh, yeah’! Do you remember which one it was?
Sya: I do. It’s a very stupid video. Basically, there’s this trending song on TikTok and people basically share their problems in their life using that song. So I shared my problem as a hijabi in Singapore. And hijabis related to it and it went viral.
Charmaine: Do you know the profile of your primary audience?
Sya: Actually, yes, I do. So on TikTok, you can actually see the analytics. Who are your followers and how many people are from which country?
Charmaine: Mostly Singapore, right?
Sya: 63% Singapore. The second biggest group is Malaysians. Around like 30%.
Charmaine: Oh, that’s quite big?
Sya: Yes. And the rest are all quite interesting because they are from different countries, like UK, US. And for some reason, I think Brazil.
Charmaine: You’re resonating with our friends there as well.
And when you walk around in Singapore, it’s like, that’s cool. When you take the bus and all that, how do people react when they see you in person?
Sya: I have a lot of stories, so it was quite funny.
Charmaine : Okay, give me your most surprising story, where you were like, ‘I made it’!
Sya: I think the first time I realized I kind of made it was back in 2019.It was a very long time. Pre pandemic, pre-COVID. And it was quite interesting because back then I wasn’t that big. But people already know me.
Charmaine: So they saw you on TikTok or a trending video on another platform?
Sya: But then they saw me in real life… I was wearing a Steven Universe outfit. I was excited to go to the Comic Con. A bunch of girls, they looked at me and they’re like, hey, I love your Steven Universe outfit!
Listen to the full episode on AWEDIO here – https://www.awedio.sg/podcast-ep/0f6b89f5-ef1b-40d2-ba03-afef016f4530/