How the @DermDoctor Became a Social Media Superstar (“1on1 with Jon Evans” podcast)


WILMINGTON, North Carolina (WECT) – Dr. Muneeb Shah’s meteoric rise on social media began on May 1, 2020. The 33-year-old Resident in dermatology To Atlantic Dermatology in Wilmington had pages on Facebook and Instagram before the COVID-19 pandemic hit. But he says those personal accounts were primarily for family and friends and posted vacation photos. With a little more free time due to pandemic restrictions, Dr Shah downloaded the TIC Tac app and posted their first video on the first day of May. He didn’t know how things were going to change.

“I will say it was certainly unexpected,” he says. “It’s not something I intend to do.”

In less than 18 months, the New York native has attracted ten million followers to his @DermDoctor account on TikTok, becoming one of the most influential voices in dermatology and social media. The impact also resulted in more subscribers on his other accounts. that of Dr Shah @Doctorly account on Instagram grew to 646,000 subscribers, and the @Doctorly channel that he co-hosts on YouTube with his dermatologist colleague, Dr LJ Maxfield has 866,000 subscribers. (Editor’s Note: At the time of my interview with Dr Shah his TikTok subscribers were 9.9 million, which is why he is referenced this way in the podcast audio).

“It basically happened by accident,” says Dr Shah of the exponential growth of his subscribers. “A lot of people weren’t going out and so at night and on weekends I would just sit in my house and say ‘You know what? I have a camera. I have social networks. People create content. I can do content! ‘. Back then, the most important people in skin care were talking about skin care issues, these people were not dermatologists. So I said, ‘I have the education, I can talk about what I know and see what people are saying about it. All of a sudden it took off, and I realized at that point that people were asking me questions like “How do you treat acne?” How do you treat acne scars? I said ‘There are a lot of questions that I wish I had known when I was in their shoes. So let me just do a short video on that, ”and it really just kept taking off from there. I realized I was needed in space.

As Dr. Shah has become more adept in the content creation process, the videos have taken on more complex functionality. He says it can take anywhere from ten minutes to an hour and a half to complete the process, depending on the type of video he wants to post. An editor is now helping to produce videos for the YouTube channel. But whether it’s tackling skin care trends, finding the best sunscreen, or answering a follower’s question or a subscriber’s question, its basic premise is the same as in the first video article of May 2020.

“Before posting, I just ask myself a simple question: ‘Does this add value to someone’s life?’ If so, I’ll post it, ”he says. “Sometimes they explode and I’m like ‘I wasn’t expecting this! Why is this the one going viral? “

You can hear Dr Shah tell the story of his first video which went viral at 3:00 from podc

Dr Shah is frequently sought after by other media for his expertise in skin care. Journalists interviewed him for recent articles in Women’s health and Vogue magazines, and for These requests started coming in after one of @DermDoctor’s TikTok videos went viral. It was then that Dr. Shah began to realize the educational opportunities and the power of the platform.

“I posted a video on The Worst Skin Care Trends – Part 1,” he recalls. “You know, jade rollers, putting ice on your face, things that I see people doing that I don’t think have long term benefits for their skin. It went like a mega-viral! The newspapers picked it up. It was on traditional media. He really started to take off and take his own mind. I realized that I had just educated 15 million people on something that would take me a lifetime to see so many people! I realized from an educational point of view that the power of these platforms for dermatologists and people in these types of positions to counter misinformation was more than what you can do in your life by talking to people by talking to people. face to face. So, I was like ‘I have to really take this seriously at this point’. From there, I have to create content that makes a significant difference. “

The National Melanoma Foundation believes that Dr. Shah’s efforts are making a difference. The organization plans to recognize him for raising awareness about melanoma, a type of dangerous skin cancer due to its ability to spread to other parts of the body if not diagnosed early and treated. Dr Jonathan Crane, the president of Atlantic Dermatology and director of the dermatology residency program at Campbell University that brought Dr Shah to Wilmington, also praised Dr Shah’s positive impact on social media.

“I am extremely proud of him and his social influence saves lives,” said Dr Crane. “It educates people about melanoma as well as other skin cancers. All of his influence is positive and honest. He has the highest degree of integrity and he brings great pride to our program.

Dr. Shah now divides his time between the day job as a dermatology resident and social media at night and on weekends. He estimates that he devotes between 40 and 50 hours per week to generate his content. If you spot him during the free time between his two passions, don’t be afraid to say hello. He appreciates the time people take to watch his videos and learn about skin care.

“I love it, it never bothers me,” says Dr Shah. “We were at the airport, about to go on vacation, and a young lady came up to me and said, ‘I watch all of your videos and learned so much from them. I just thought. that I had to go up and say ‘Hi!’. She was actually wearing a skin care mask under her other mask. We were just about to take off and I was like, ‘This is so cool. The fact that you would go out of your way to watch my videos, support my content, trust me and trust me, especially now when it’s hard to trust doctors, to have earned that from someone and d ‘them to come and go out of their way to tell me that I can’t feel anything but honored. ”People who come to me really want to thank me, and I’m just thankful that they trust me and that ‘they trust my videos and continue to be educated.

My conversation with Dr Muneeb Shah covered many other topics, such as how he became interested in science and medicine, the reactions of his wife and colleagues to his popularity on TikTok and his projects. futures in dermatology and social media. We also got the chance to meet Teddy Bear, who wanted some of his screen time during the interview. Hope you enjoy this episode as much as I do.

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