How Hobbies Reshape Social Networking
Have you ever wondered... "Can I turn my hobby into something bigger?". Well, our answer to this question is ‘Yes!’.
We are puzzlers from Bulgaria, and we have always loved doing jigsaw puzzles since we were kids. And when Covid happened in 2020, we rediscovered our childhood hobby again. We started loving jigsaw puzzles not only because it's fun or it's a gift from someone, but we also felt the massive benefits of completing a puzzle- the satisfaction we get from piecing together a beautiful image and the sense of accomplishment when we finally complete it. Then we started looking for particular images, shapes, and number of pieces, even though we liked some brands more than others. We rediscovered a whole new world where the main hero was "THE jigsaw puzzle".
Two years passed doing lots of puzzling and watching many puzzle videos on youtube (@karenpuzzles). We remember how inspired and motivated we were to do new puzzles after watching Karen Puzzle's videos. We discovered so many cool brands that we wanted to try like Soonness, Cloudberries, etc. She also inspired us to try challenging puzzles such as solid colour puzzles, gradient puzzles, and higher count puzzles. And one day, just like Karen Puzzles inspired us, we also wanted to make people feel that way.
So in October 2021, we decided to show our jigsaw puzzle journey and create cool contents with it. That is how our Instagram page @bulgarianpuzzlers was created. We were having (and still are) a lot of fun creating images and videos for our social media pages. When we joined the puzzle community online, we found so many other puzzle lovers who shared their puzzles with their followers, too! It was satisfying to see their contents as much as creating contents ourselves. We love discussing about a puzzle that we completed with other puzzle lovers like us.
Not too long after creating our instagram page with puzzle contents, we discovered that we are quite good at making reels. We have already created our TikTok and Facebook pages when one morning, we found out that our video went viral both in our Instagram and TikTok. The video was showing our favorite puzzles which are the solid color Krypt puzzles (gradient & black) from Ravensburger.
The top comments were ‘I thought that you were moving a hole’ and ‘Enid and Wednesday vibes’.
Because once you know that it is just a black puzzle piece that we are moving, the illusion is gone. But since our audience was not aware of the structure of the puzzle, they viewed it from a different angle and saw magic. There was another unintended factor. We happened to post the video just when a viral Netflix series launched. When we created the video, we had no idea who Enid and Wednesday were. Through the comments, we found out that people are connecting the rainbow Krypt puzzle with Enid and the solid black Krypt puzzle with Wednesday – the two main characters from the viral series ‘Wednesday’.
Photo above: Netflix series 'Wednesday'
Those 2 unintended coincidences were how we went viral, and our platforms exploded with many new followers, comments, likes, friendships, and collaborations. Now our most viewed videos have millions of views (57.5 million watched on TikTok and 15.2 million on Instagram– crazy right?), along with thousands of comments and likes.
After this huge event on our social platforms, we wanted to try Soonness puzzles and reached out to Soon (founder of Soonness) for a possible collaboration. She offered us to send a puzzle from the Gradient Therapy Collection and we were delighted. We live in Bulgaria and Soonness puzzles are not available locally, and to have it delivered, we needed to pay a high international shipping fee. We have only wished to have one of her puzzles since we saw it on Karen’s video titled 'I mixed together three gradient puzzles. Can I still solve them?'.
Another dream came true.
We really enjoyed the puzzle that she sent us called 'Magic Box'. As much as we loved this puzzle, the contents we made of this puzzle also went viral. We made really cute photos of it which are currently our most liked post on Instagram, and the video has more that one million views on TikTok.
What we learned through sharing our favorite hobby on social media is that, content creating is beyond likes and shares. Sure, thousands of likes gave us satisfaction, but what's more? Our simple interest grew our social networks from our proximity (friends and family) to the worldwide puzzle community, and soon to be puzzle lovers. Moreover, many brands find us and reach out to us for collaborations. We now have the benefit of doing puzzles from brands that are new to us or are not so popular in Bulgaria.
So you might be thinking... "how do you grow your social platforms?" We will share some of our secrets here.
- We always spend a lot of time on social networks searching for trends or looking for some inspiration from Pinterest for our photos.
- The light is crucial when you want a high quality photos or videos. Spend some money on light accessories or wait for a sunny day. And always have fun doing what you do.
We always try to write an engaging caption on our posts so it grabs attention and more people could interact with the content.
We only write maximum of 5 hashtags describing the post.
We are still trying to find out which are the best days and hours to post-this is also very important.
We encourage you to share your favorite hobby and use social media to go beyond.
Get to know the Author: Bulgarian Puzzlers
We are both young working women, Kristina is a software developer and Ekaterina is a marketing specialist. As people, we are very different but what brings us together is our love for doing puzzles. You can find more about us HERE.