It’s quite alarming what a large amount of first year students have no access to or basic knowledge of how computers and laptops work at the time of their enrolment into an institute of higher learning. What is even more alarming is that little to nothing is being done by these institutions in assisting these learners to help them familiarize themselves with the basics of a computer. Which is why we have taken it upon ourselves here at BloemGirlsRock to assist girls from underprivileged surroundings in equipping them with the necessary skill sets to be able to navigate their way through a computer. This year we have decided to introduce Digital Entrepreneurship to our girls who graduated from the Computer Literacy classes they were attending last year. This is so that in the event that they are unable to afford varsity post high school, they can at least manoeuvre the internet easily and find a way to make a living from Digital Entrepreneurship.
But what exactly is Digital Entrepreneurship? It has been defined as creating new ventures and transforming existing businesses by developing new digital technologies and/or new millennial usage of such technologies. Digital Entrepreneurship is utilizing technology such as social media, cloud solutions and the internet to make traditional business mobile.
“47% of the world’s population is connected to the internet” – ItForum (2016)
There are various types of businesses than thrive off just a laptop or smartphone and an internet connection. First and the most popular would be YouTube channels. In the past 3 years, we’ve seen an increase in the amount of YouTube channels amongst the South African Youth. We’ve seen internet sensations such as Moshe Ndiki and Lasizwe go from YouTube to bagging sought after television gigs. Other YouTubers with quite big numbers include the likes of Sibu Mpanza and Mihlali Ndamase, who was recently feautured on Cosmopolitan SA’s cover as one the members of #YouTubeClassOf2019.
Apart from YouTube, online magazines such JustCurious, that has been shut down and replaced with Chica Africa; a career and lifestyle magazine, The Throne, Guide To Celeb have taken the industry by storm as people are reading less physical magazine copies and opting for more convenient online publications. Similar to Blogs, a video blog popularly known as Vlogs, where people document their experiences in the form of a video and share it either on YouTube or their personal websites. In the age where we are moving from radio as we know it, podcasts have become increasingly popular as they may have one common topic or play one specific genre of music to cater to certain audiences. On Instagram we have Influencers and Insta Boutiques, and on Twitter we have promoters who work closely with event organizers in order to increase the number of patrons who know about their events and increase the number of people attending said events.
“3 billion: approximately 40% of the global population actively uses social media” – TECMUNDO (2017)
Working from your phone or laptop is very convenient; all you need is internet access. Some of the other benefits of Digital Entrepreneurship are that you get to work from home most of the time as internet is not location based. Being a Digital Entrepreneur also means that you have flexible hours, but having flexible hours also requires one to be very diligent and disciplined in how they use their time. By working from home and having flexible hours, you are able to save costs as you would not have to drive anywhere, thus saving petrol costs. You would also not be leasing any office space as you would most probably be working from home.
We hope to expose our girls to the many benefits of using the internet and their computer skills to their advantage because traditional methods of work have changed and by knowing how to effectively use the internet, they will have control over their own businesses and control the bags they secure because not only is the future FEMALE, the future is also DIGITAL so we are moulding FUTURE DIGITAL FEMALES!!!