Interviewed by: Lexie Newhouse
Written by: Kirstyn Dubar
Photos by: Deniece Griffin
Christian Park is a Managerial Science major and graduating senior here at Georgia State University. Born and raised in Atlanta, Park is the founder of Third World Street, a streetwear page on Instagram that helps both brands and models increase their engagement on social media. Park was also recently selected as a Frances Wood Wilson Foundation Scholar.
How does Third World Street increase brand and model engagement?
We target people interested in fashion, specifically streetwear and sneaker heads. We offer style inspiration, brand collaborations and giveaways. We help brands and models get exposure at a reasonable price.
How do you form these partnerships?
Most models, brands and resellers reach out to us via email or direct message. From there we build relationships, but I am also constantly researching different feeds and hashtags to seek out any new potential accounts that we may want to work with.
Why did you choose Instagram as your main platform as opposed to a different social media site?
I’m just not interested in Twitter or any of those similar platforms personally. If I ever expanded the brand beyond Instagram to another platform, I would have someone else run it. I like to keep the focus specifically on Instagram because it allows me to hone the traffic needs of my page. It is essentially a “quality over quantity” situation.
You founded your page a little over a year ago and already have ove 19,000 followers. How did you grow your account so quickly?
It definitely grew quicker than I could have ever imagined. The giveaways help a lot, but it’s all about just being an active social media user. I post regularly, and I show a lot of love to everyone that supports the page, so I have been able to build up a little community.
Do you mainly feature your own content or is more about curating others’ posts?
It’s a little bit of both. My content is definitely on there, but it is a lot of reposting in order to gain other pages’ support as well as their followers’ support.
Do you have a team or are you running everything on your own?
I’m the only one that runs the page and handles the engagement, but I do have a team of models and photographers that I can easily reach out to on any given day to go shoot content.
Are these models and photographers typically fellow Georgia State students or do you branch out from campus?
I think Georgia State is a great environment for this type of project because there are so many creatives here. That’s the great thing about Georgia State – The fact that we are in the middle of one of country’s biggest and most diverse cities, so I take advantage of that and put it towards my business. I do meet other people from around the city that I feature though that aren’t necessarily Georgia State students.
When did you first take interest in fashion and streetwear?
I have always had an interest in fashion and have been quite conscious of industry as a whole. Before I started the page, I had no idea about streetwear in specific. I didn’t know anything about brands like Supreme or Off-White. I just wore whatever I wanted. I started the page to learn more about the reseller market then became extremely invested in it as a project.
How would you describe the Atlanta streetwear market as compared to some other cities?
Atlanta is very hip hop-oriented. Within the city alone, there is an abundance of sneakerheads, models and people that are just extremely invested into their style and how they look. It’s the perfect model. From running my page, I have noticed that there is a huge interest in streetwear in Europe, specifically places like London and Germany. I love being based in Atlanta because I’m not only connected to the local streetwear scene but the global one too.
Is there a lot of competition?
There are ton of similar pages, and oftentimes, I will try to reach out and collaborate with other pages. Though most people want to focus exclusively on their own page, some are eager to collaborate and work together.
What’s you personal favorite(s) brand?
Off-White is my favorite brand. Their pieces are very minimalistic and simple but have such a strong impact.
Has your major been helpful in running your business?
The business classes have definitely assisted me in staying organized and running my page as a business. I am more aware of my customer segments and therefore are able to keep track of costs and outreach. It is definitely useful.
Do you plan on running this Instagram page as a long-term career plan?
I have thought about selling the page and have wondered how much it would go for. I value it quite high given the amount of work, time and effort I have invested into the creating the page. I definitely consider it to be a long term project. With me graduating, I will probably enter your typical corporate job and keep this account as a side hustle. I still have a lot of plans for this account, and I’m really hoping to become a verified account.
What advice can you offer to others who want to leverage social media to make money?
With any Instagram page, you must have consistent content to post. Find a niche community where you will be able to grow. My niche, for example, is streetwear instead of just creating a general fashion page. It allows me to grow a specified audience faster. I would also encourage others interested in making an account for the purpose of making money to connect with other similar accounts. Like everything, it’s all about networking.
Do you ever feel the need to take a break from social media?
Yes, yes, yes. Sometimes I hate Instagram. It’s a portal, a trap sometimes. I try to schedule out breaks and manage my time on the app.
Do you use a post planner to stay organized?
I don’t, that would be nice to use though. I will at minimum post once per day and then sometimes at night as well, but that’s because half of the world is awake while you’re asleep.
Do you utilize any of Instagram’s other features or do you strictly post photos?
Stories are my favorite! I love to just sit down and draw on content for added creativity.
Would you consider yourself an artist, creative or businessman? Something else perhaps?
I do see this account as a business, but it is a different entity than myself. I know that I am creative as a person, and this account has been a fun outlet and great source of new relationships for me and my business. I have been able to connect with people from all over the world through this business that I have created.
What does entrepreneurship mean to you?
Entrepreneurship for me is all about creating value and having other people see the value in you as well as finding a solution to a problem. Your competitive advantage to your solution is key as it gives your solution the edge over anyone else’s.