As part of an ongoing series, Branding in Asia talks to influencers across the globe, learning more about how they got started, what has driven their success, and other insights to inform both brands and agencies as well as aspiring influencers.
This week we feature Shivanshu Agrawal, a 23-year-old influencer from India with an impressive 1.2 million followers on Instagram where he covers topics on Business & Marketing.
Shivanshu was ranked #11 in Forbes India Top 100 Digital Stars. According to Agrawal, with a mere 83 Instagram reels, he is the fastest creator to reach one million followers on Instagram in India.
Name: Shivanshu Agrawal
Hometown: Katni, M.P., India
Current Location: Katni, M.P.
Platforms & Followers: Instagram – @marketingshivanshu – 1.2M
Some brands you’ve worked with: Cred, upGrad, INDmoney
Date of your first post: 6th June 2021
Agency Representation: Finnet Media
What were you doing before you became an influencer?
I worked as a Rewards and Benefits consultant in Aon India, until July 2021.
What inspired you to pursue it as a career?
I watched a lot of YouTube since school and was impressed by the power of online video creation. You could just use your phone to record a video and reach thousands of people for free. This fascinated me.
I created my first two YouTube videos when I was in my first year in my college. The videos didn’t work well, and I quit content creation.
Four years later, I was working at a full-time job, and I was burned out. That’s when I decided to go back to content creation and give it a proper shot. Luckily things worked out well!
As you were building a following, was there a particular post or posts you felt pushed you to the next level?
After restarting my content creation journey, I posted consistently on YouTube and IG but saw little success.
I started having doubts if content creation was really for me. But then one of my Instagram reels on Starbucks Marketing Strategy went viral and got me, my first 30k followers. This was the push I needed. This kept me going.
View this post on Instagram
What do you love most about being an influencer?
I get to read and learn about so many interesting things for a living. That’s what I love the most about being an infotainment influencer. I don’t think this is possible in many other jobs.
What do you like the least?
I am incredibly grateful for what I have got as a social media influencer in the past year. Honestly, there is nothing that I dislike about being an influencer as such. All the minor problems, stresses, and ups & downs are worth it.
How do you decide which brands to partner with, and how do you ensure that sponsored content resonates with your followers?
I try to partner with the brands I personally use, and I am sure that that brand will add value to my audience’s life.
If I haven’t used a brand’s product or services, then I go over their website, press, and reviews to ensure they are authentic and valuable. I also try out the offering myself to better understand how it can help my viewers.
View this post on Instagram
What inspires you to consistently create new content?
Initially, content creation started as a side hustle for me. But now it’s a full-time career. I consider content creation a business, which helps me stay disciplined with my content creation process.
“For anyone who wants to be an influencer, my advice would be don’t try to become an influencer. Instead, aim to add value to people’s lives through your content.”
I also realize that lakhs of people look forward to watching my content. This instills a sense of responsibility to keep creating consistently for them.
Any tips do you have for someone who wants to become an influencer?
For anyone who wants to be an influencer, my advice would be don’t try to become an influencer. Instead, aim to add value to people’s lives through your content.
Influence is the byproduct of you consistently providing value to your audience.