We had the good fortune of connecting with Gift Igbin and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Gift, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
Making my own business was a solution to wanting to own something meaningful and create my stamp in my corner of the world. I wanted to feel the freedom that all CEO’s seemed to feel, the motivation and the drive to see something you started become successful. I come from a family of CEO’s so starting a business was prefect in continuing that tradition.
My business is a social media management company that was founded when I was 17 called SocialGiftI. I have always been that friend that can take photos, that friend that can make posters & make things look pretty. This actively translated to me loving the art of content creation.
From video content to aesthetic Instagram posts, I wanted to be that business owner that had a heart for helping other entrepreneurs.
Growing up there was a lot of times I found that the lack of knowledge can start to become an obstacle in someone advancing to the next level of their life or business. Not knowing what to invest in, how to complete a task, where to find help etc. I wanted to not just be a person effected by the same issue it but a person who could create a solution.
I started small with helping those who just needed an extra hand in their business tasks to then strategizing and managing client social media accounts and creating the long task of marketing their brands on social media a much seamless process.
My goal from the start was to assist business owners in not losing sight of the social in social media and not forgetting the fun of content creation and I have been blessed enough to do just that.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
My business is a social media management company – SocialGiftI. I fully run it alone and I’m working on building a team to one day serve more entrepreneurs and brands. I founded my business at 17 in the last years of high school when choosing a path for my future was something I was contemplating on a lot. I wanted to do something that inspired and served others.
During the wave of COVID-19, “non-essential” businesses were highly affected as the virus was trying to be controlled worldwide. I found a passion from a young age when assisting my mother in her business, that I loved content creation, aesthetics when it came to a brand and most of all watching my mother be a business owner.
I had empathy for business owners that needed the assistance I now provide, and I could understand all the hats they had to juggle especially now with a global pandemic.
Fast forward to 2022, and now I am 19, still fully managing my business and clients from all over the world and that alone excites me. I am very blessed to have worked with so many different professionals across multiple niches and industries.
To get to where I am now, it took a lot of strength, determination and drive to see my vision eventually come to life. I started at a point where my peers were trying to pick a college major while I was trying to build a business from scratch.
With no budget to invest in multiple expensive educational resources I spent countless hours and late nights learning from others and using every free resource possible to learn how to get into social media management. It was not by any means an easy ride and it really forced me to change my mindset and focus on more of my priorities & goals rather than me sitting back waiting for life to happen in my favour.
From these experiences of building a business, building an industry network, creating content and facilitating an online presence, I have learned to keep striving for your dreams regardless of if it’s in the norm to or not. Too many times has my age, race or educational status left me feeling unmotivated or unqualified to do what I do now. Too many times have I doubted if following the “regular path” of going to high school, graduating, going to college, finding a job etc was the path for me. I learned it was not. But then I learned that was okay. Not everyone would understand it, not everyone would support it but that’s okay. Learning that got me to a point where I’m confident enough to be proud of the path I am now taking and fully enjoying and extremely grateful for.
I want the world to know that for a kid that once thought being an actress, a teen entrepreneur, a content creator, a prom stylist and a teen community owner was too much or just impossible. I come to be an example of how it isn’t. One career might not be for you. Two or three may be and that’s fine to pursue whatever is put on your heart to do. Don’t be scared of doing something out of the norm as it will serve you to always at least try.
Growing up having big dreams you don’t think you can achieve has made every small or big success in my career mean the world to me as now I’m here achieving them and breaking multiple societal norms. My mother has always told me within our faith God puts passions and ideas on our hearts to pursue them and discover what inspires us in life. I listened to that advice and I’m so grateful I did because if someone would of told my 10 year old self that was petrified to tell others of my huge dreams of wanting to be an actress and own a business and have a teen community (GI Social Society) that I would be blessed to live the life I’ve lived Abe still living. I would of been an overjoyed 10 year old!
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
A lot of my friends have never been to LA so each day of the week we are going to very LA spot. Take a hike to Hollywood Sign, Go to the $5 souvenir store on the walk of fame strip. Go to Rodeo Drive and take photos in the residential roads with the palm trees along the road. Visit Santa Monica & get a funnel cake of course ! Visit Redondo + Torrance beach and hang out with the amazing sand and view. Go to Del Amo and enjoy the big mall experience and drive to get some Hawaiian food. Eat at Roscoe’s for breakfast and then walk over to Randy’s Donuts. Lots of adventuring and mini road trips to view the amazing city.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My sister. Efe Fruci. A inspiration and a testament of hard work, drive and unfailing resilience. Never failing to remind me of where I can go with some strength, prayers and a passion for achieving my dreams. I love you and I’m so grateful for you and your generosity throughout my life and now career.
Other: Tiktok: @SocialGift
PHOTOS BY EDYTA SHEEDY