Features

24 hours with… Mongchin Yeoh (also known as ‘Mongabong’)

Singaporean social media influencer turned television host Mongchin Yeoh – otherwise known as ‘Mongabong – maps out a day of filming in Thailand for her TV show Who runs the World with Mong Chin

From social media influencer to TV star

6:30am: I just got off a flight from Kuala Lumpur and I am now in Bangkok. I’m currently shooting for Who runs the World with Mong Chin and I’m here for the Songkran Festival and run, which celebrates the Thai New Year.

I’ve got two hours to kill so I hang around the airport to get some work done. I’m vlogging my experience and also asking my followers on social media for suggestions on fun things to do and places to visit while I’m in Chiang Mai. This is the amazing thing about social media – I get to connect and engage with my followers instantaneously.

The cool thing about this show is that it documents the behind-the-scenes stuff that viewers don’t usually get to see from reality shows. They get to follow my adventure from country to country while I’m trying out all the different activities in real-time, before the show actually airs

9.00am: I’m finally in Chiang Mai, Thailand. It’s my first time here and I hear the Songkran festivities can get quite crazy, so I’m definitely looking forward to that. I grab a quick bite before we head over to the hotel.

9:30am: I check into my hotel room and it is amazing. Definitely, an Instagrammable place. I am staying at Le Meridien and I’m doing a room tour for my followers on Instagram just to give them a glimpse of where I’m staying.

10.00am: Now it’s time to get ready for the day ahead. I’m getting my make-up done by a local Thai makeup artist today. It’s really nice to have a professional do your make-up for you. I use my phone as a mirror to check the results, another fun perk of technology.

11am: I’m on route to my first activity of the day – zip-lining at Flight of the Gibbon. This is the only zipline where you can see wild gibbons. I’ve got on my yellow harness and orange helmet, and I’m snapping a couple of shots for social media.

Zip-lining tests Mong Chin

11:30am: Zip-lining is challenging by itself but my producer wants me to carry a camera to film my experience with a selfie stick as well. The adrenaline takes over and I can’t help but scream.

The crew captures me at my most unglamorous state here but it’s all good because it’s all part of the fun and I made it through all the zip-line challenge.

1.00pm: We break for lunch at a local restaurant and I’m starving. I love this spot because it’s where all the locals go to so you know it’s authentic. I have a hearty meal before we kick-start the next activity for the day – Songkran.

2pm: I’m finally at Songkran. This is indeed the highlight of the trip. Everyone is armed with water guns and they’re loading up their buckets with water.

Going to war with water

There are a lot of locals here and tourists. The atmosphere is fantastic. It’s my first time at the festival and I don’t know what to expect, but it looks like a lot of fun.

I’m about to leave the car to join in the action. The crew follow me to capture every moment of it.

4.00pm: I’m done with Songkran and I’m soaked. It was so amazing. The atmosphere, the people and the cooling water of course. I feel like a kid again.

Soon we’re heading back to the hotel to dry off and freshen up before the last activity for the day.

The photo opportunites never stop for Mongabong

6.00pm: I’m getting ready for the last stop of the evening at The Castle – a first of its kind attraction that combines a haunted house with the escape room concept.

I am starring as a ghost in the haunted house, and we’re in hair and make-up now to achieve the super scary look. I can’t wait to scare people.

7pm: We’re at The Castle now and I have an actual python around my neck. For those who don’t know this about me, I actually love snakes.

I also met a couple of ‘ghost mentors’ earlier who taught me how to scream and scare people.

10pm: I can’t believe I have to go back to the hotel with this horrific make-up still on my face. But it was actually great fun scaring people earlier so it’s worth it.

It’s been a really long day. I go back to my room to review all the photos taken today.

11.00pm: This is the behind-the-scenes that nobody really tells you about – the life of a social media influencer. I like to review my photos, choose the really good ones, edit them and post them on social media.

I use a Canon EOS M50, which has the wi-fi function. It makes it so much easier to transfer pictures directly to all my devices. Social media is a great tool in today’s digital age – we can do much with it, especially in spreading awareness and creating interest in the things we do.

Using a good camera is essential for an influencer, according to Mong Chin

Social is really about building that long-term relationship with your audience. The sooner you start, the sooner you will be able to see your followers grow.

12am: Sleep. I’ve had such a dynamic day and I’m so blessed with so many opportunities to meet and work with people from all walks of life. No two experiences are the same. For now, it’s time for some much-needed rest before another day of filming begins tomorrow.

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