Why do I love social media? Let me count the ways!
I’m constantly stumbling across to many amazing entrepreneurial, brand stories that without the help of social media, we’d never get exposed to.
I first encountered a series of HILARIOUS videos by Darius Williams, creator of DariusCooks.com and I knew I just HAD to talk to him. When I reached out, he was so generous to allow me to tell his brand story: his journey into turning his love for food and entertaining, the inspiration behind his latest cookbook, Stories From My Grandmother’s Kitchen and turning all of it into a viable business venture.
Not many black male cooks and food bloggers are making such big waves online like Darius.
Although he’s been a food blogger for more than eight years, Williams has recently enjoyed popularity online with his delicious looking, easy-to-prepare recipes, brand of humor and dynamic dinner parties and cooking classes he hosts all around the country.
He says the recipes he shares and his way of cooking have a “soul element” and he further describes his style of cooking as “comforting,” saying, “I try to make sure every recipe has no more than five steps. If you look at any recipes on the site … there are no weird ingredients.”
In addition to gradually building his brand on the premise that his dishes are “easy, simple, delicious with familiar flavors presented in brand new ways,” Williams decided to push the envelope and ask himself, “What can you do to stand out and make it a little bit different?”
Being relatable is hugely important to Williams, which is why he engages with people further via his blog and social media accounts. “People love the fact that I’m just like them,” he says. Part of what makes Williams so popular online is the fact that he infuses his brand with a unique brand of humor. To further connect with his audience, Williams started sharing hilarious videos, with one popular one being affectionately called, “Fat Prayers” highlighting his love for food. The videos have gone viral, garnering thousands of likes and shares on Facebook alone.
Did I mention he was HILARIOUS? I’m not the only one who thinks that way because the success of Darius’ videos inspired him to create and digital release a comedy album, I Know You Can Do It Vol. 1 that reached the number 2 spot in the iTunes comedy category within 24 hours. Not long after, the album appeared on the top 10 comedy Billboard chart.
He’s been able to strategically leverage his online popularity into opportunities to host cooking classes and dinner parties all across the country. The response? EVERY one of them has been sold out, with people begging him to come to a city near them.
When asked why he wants to write a cookbook, he informs me has a story to tell – one that isn’t told often from the Black male perspective.
His journey is certainly an interesting one and to learn even more about it, read the piece I wrote for Black Enterprise, here!
To connect with Darius across social media, follow him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Oh! And order one of his cookbooks, it’s chock full of unique recipes and beautiful photos (100 to be exact)!
What did you think of Darius’s story? Comment below!