The Sane-sational Prajakta Koli
Man's World|February 2021
In the vast sea of Indian content creators, Prajakta Koli has managed to cut through the clutter, and emerge as the single-most marketable influencer in the country
Mayukh Majumdar

Even though Prajakta Koli has been on everyone's radar for over three years now, November 2020 marked the first time that the YouTuber was promoting something. Usually, Koli's legions of fans know when to expect her next video, and on the rare occasion they forget, she can always put out an insta story. Dressed in a frilly white top, Koli arrives at our Zoom interview about 15 minutes late, and apologises profusely. COVID-19 may have changed the globe irrevocably, but it hasn't managed to put a dent in Mumbai's traffic situation. When Koli launched her YouTube channel in February 2015, influencer culture was in its nascent stage. YouTube, Instagram, and Bollywood were three separate platforms.

When I started making YouTube videos, I did not think that this (shifting to films) was a way to go. Five years ago, if you asked me kya karna hai life mein, I would say bas mujhe 30,000 subscribers mil jayenge, mai khush ho jaoongi. Nobody had predicted that the internet would suddenly blow up, and that industries would start merging, and the lines would get blurry, she says.

Much like her character in the Netflix original series, Mismatched, Koli had it all figured out from a young age. She wanted to be an RJ and began her career at Fever 104 FM as an intern. It was a nightmare. Not only was Koli not allowed to eat lunch at the same table with the employees, her 14-hour shifts felt oppressive, and she shed around 11 kilos due to the excessive workload. In short, Koli was sinking, and who should turn up as a lifeguard other than Sudeep Lahiri from One Digital Entertainment, and Bollywood's gift to the world, Hrithik Roshan?

Roshan had come to the studio and despite warnings from her seniors, Koli went ahead and shot a video with him for her Instagram page. Lahiri happened to notice the entire exchange, and realized that she had fun energy. There's no and that's when her life suddenly changed moment here. While Lahiri had recommended that Koli try making YouTube videos, she was hesitant. However, he finally convinced her to meet him, and discuss the various possibilities of YouTube.

I remember coming out of the old One Digital office and calling my mom, saying ‘I think it was an interview and I think I made it’. She asked ‘what are you now?’ and I said ‘now I'm a YouTuber’,” Koli says, giggling.

A huge part of Koli's success goes to her parents who've been extremely supportive of her career. They have an entire wall in their home dedicated to fan art.

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM MAN'S WORLDView All

Of ‘Womxn, ‘Womyn' and ‘Women': Why you need to listen to what transfeminism is saying

In the bizarre muddling and swirling of worlds in 2020, in the midst of nation states shutting shop and people locking themselves in houses and boxing themselves into holes, new words floated up and about on the internet

4 mins read
Man's World
April 2021

Getting Set For The Oscars

With just a few weeks to go for the big awards show, we take a look at some of the best films that are in contention

9 mins read
Man's World
April 2021

SUNIL GROVER 2.0

Known for making people laugh their hearts out with his comedy, mimicry, and sometimes just his presence, Sunil Grover is now breaking free from his funny image to play one of those love-to-hate reel personalities, and winning hearts all over again

5 mins read
Man's World
April 2021

TEQUILA & MEZCAL, THE NEW GIN

Every restaurant, every bar, every retail store, and every hotel is seriously upping their tequila game as we speak, and here is why

3 mins read
Man's World
April 2021

Fifty Shades of Shefali Shah

We all know her as the actor who can bring life to any role, but Shefali Shah takes pride in all the roles she plays in her life. She’s a writer, an artist, and a proud obsessive mom

6 mins read
Man's World
April 2021

The New Voices of EDM

The general perception of EDM has gone way beyond “just pressing a few keys” and “being loud”. While we are all familiar with the distinctly Indian swanky tunes of Nucleya and the high-on-energy beats of Zaeden, these upcoming voices in the Indian EDM scene might have flown under your radar

4 mins read
Man's World
April 2021

Audi Brings Its A Game With The New A4

The fifth generation Audi A4 might not be as powerful as the R8, or as off-road-capable as the Q5, or as luxurious as an A8, but it stands out for its all-round capability

4 mins read
Man's World
April 2021

ZEGNA'S #WHATMAKESAMAN JOURNEY

STYLE

3 mins read
Man's World
April 2021

AADAR JAIN THE BOY-NEXT-DOOR TO LOOK OUT FOR IN 2021

There’s a new camaraderie in town and this time, it’s Aadar Jain and a gorilla. Hello Charlie on Amazon Prime Video intends to make you laugh out loud, Jain tells MW, and opens up about the ensemble cast, the digital release of the film, and his bond with his co-stars

8 mins read
Man's World
April 2021

The Volvo S60 is Slick, Efficient, and Luxurious

With the handsome new S60, Volvo hopes to take on the Big Three German carmakers, which together dominate the luxury car segment in India

4 mins read
Man's World
March 2021
RELATED STORIES

6 apps that take you to a VR world

Grab a headset and jump into virtual reality

3 mins read
Mac Life
April 2021

LAWMAKERS CALL YOUTUBE KIDS A ‘WASTELAND OF VAPID' CONTENT

A House subcommittee is investigating YouTube Kids, saying the Google-owned video service feeds children inappropriate material in “a wasteland of vapid, consumerist content” so it can serve them ads.

3 mins read
Techlife News
Techlife News #493

Formula D

2-10 PLAYERS | 60 MINUTES | AGES 8+

2 mins read
Casual Game Insider
Spring 2021

The Preteen's Guide to Getting Rich Off YouTube

Ryan Kaji’s video empire makes most of its revenue from merchandise, not ads

5 mins read
Bloomberg Businessweek
March 29 - April 05, 2021

DEMI LOVATO: DRUGS SAVED MY LIFE!

DESPITE a near-fatal overdose in 2018, songbird Demi Lovato still insists drugs also saved her life! The former Disney darling said drug abuse prevented her from turning to suicide.

1 min read
National Enquirer
March 29, 2021

The Receipt Keeper D'Angelo Wallace always knows how to cut through the chaos.

IF YOU WANT TO KNOW what’s going on with YouTubers or anybody else with a modicum of influence online, you’ve got two options. You can watch their videos and scour Instagram—or you can get thee to a YouTube drama channel. And no one does a channel quite like D’Angelo Wallace. The Texas-based 22-year-old packs his superlong explainer videos (many of them run over an hour) with timelines, charts, and commentary—a hybrid model that perfectly encapsulates the messiness of the influencers he covers. He now has more than 2.18 million subscribers. “I will say it’s not necessarily a case of me always striving to have the best research, or I’m always going to be 100 percent correct,” Wallace said. “I just am obsessed with the storytelling of it all.”

4 mins read
New York magazine
March 15 - 28, 2021

No Mercy

Ralph Macchio Talks Tech, the Switch to Netflix, and Season 3 of Cobra Kai

7 mins read
Innovation & Tech Today
2020 Year-End Issue

Razer Cynosa V2

A $60 keyboard from Razer?

3 mins read
Maximum PC
February 2021

MIKE FARRINGTON

Woodworker, content creator; a lesson in contradictions

5 mins read
Woodcraft Magazine
February - March 2021

how to hit the reset button

When emotions are spiraling out of control, it’s time to go within and meditate.

4 mins read
Transformation Magazine
January 2021