When high school senior Josiah Jenkins released his first video on Vine in 2013 (a silly compilation of clips he put together featuring himself and a couple friends), he had no idea it would become the first stepping stone toward his amazingly successful journey in social media, digital marketing, and eventually, mobile app publishing.
Though Josiah is self-admittedly not your “typical app developer,” he has managed to get several of his apps to the top of the app stores (and we’re talking the #1, #2 positions)!
So how did a financially-strapped 19-year-old from Atlanta, GA, accomplish so much, and at such a young age? After hearing about his amazing story highlighted in our video interview, you’ll see it was through determination, grit, hard work, and pretty incredible social media savvy.
Josiah has a very likeable personality — funny, down-to-earth, and effortlessly cool — a combination that attracted a social following soon after he released his first Vine video (in fact, his very first video went viral with over 600K views!). When various companies and marketers started reaching out to Josiah to spread their messages, he began to realize the monetary potential of being a social media influencer. App publishers in particular were finding success in working with Josiah to promote their apps, via Vine and Instagram, to his growing following.
It wasn’t long before Josiah realized he wasn’t limited to being the “marketing guy.” He could publish his own apps, and use the social marketing machine at his disposal to promote them. Long story short – it worked! After several lessons and challenges along the way (including being cheated out of thousands of dollars by another developer), Josiah has gotten several of his apps to the top of the charts. Most of his top titles are casual games, based on viral phenomena (e.g. Damn Daniel, Juju on the Beat, Mannequin Challenge, Trump on the Run!) – and all of his games generate revenue through in-app advertising.
When Josiah selected MoPub to manage his ad monetization strategy across his entire portfolio of apps, he saw his revenue soar. (Prior to MoPub, his ad inventory was sold directly to ad networks, with no real advertiser competition in place.) After moving to MoPub, both fill rate and eCPMs increased significantly; Josiah admits, “it was just amazing…I had more revenue to re-invest into new apps.” And that he did!
Today Josiah is a self-made millionaire, digital marketing master, expert app publisher, and social media personality (@mom on Instagram, @JosiahJenkins on Twitter). Having recently moved himself and several of his family members from Atlanta to Southern California, Josiah is starting to dabble in e-commerce while continuing to build and release new apps.
We can’t wait to see what he does next!
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