Cult figures: Building a personal brand on social media | The Financial Express

Cult figures: Building a personal brand on social media

Authentic content and creator-brand synergy bring the big deals

Cult figures: Building a personal brand on social media
Authenticity is also key, as Ruhee Dosani, digital content creator with over a million Instagram followers, points out.

A recent Colgate hoarding for its Visible White toothpaste had the infectious influencer Dolly Singh’s smile featured on it, complete with her relatively imperfect teeth! While the campaign was commended for its inclusivity and redefinition of beauty, it also demonstrated that brands are going beyond the Bollywood brigade to make an impact.

Masoom Minawala, a fashion influencer, has collaborated with a established brands such as Estée Lauder, Louis Vuitton and Maybelline India as well as homegrown ones such as Urban Pataka, among others. “I created organic content to feature brands on my profile for a long time before I cracked any brand partnerships. Once I was successful in engaging my community with my content, I could highlight the impact I could drive for brands and started landing paid collaborations,” she says,.

Get the drift? Brand endorsement is no longer what it used to be. That is why the likes of Alia Bhatt and Ranveer Singh are making way for relatively unknown brand endorsers. Ergo, there’s a growing need for these new brand endorsers to build their personal brand on social media.

One of the differentiating factors for influencers is their ability to connect with consumers with honest experiences from their own lives. While there is no defined path to carving a successful personal brand, Prashant Puri, co-founder & CEO, AdLift, advocates the need to find one’s own niche and area of expertise. “Consumers want specific information, and very few content creators can strike the right chords there. If you manage to create a moment of impact, and add value to their lives, your work will stand out and cause a ripple effect,” he suggests.

Authenticity is also key, as Ruhee Dosani, digital content creator with over a million Instagram followers, points out. “The mantra I follow and advocate is — be yourself, be consistent and don’t give up,” she offers. Dosani works with brands like H&M India, CRED and MakeMyTrip, among others.

Building consumer trust

Often, brands enlist both big league celebrities as well as influencers for their communication. For instance, online shopping brand Meesho recently rolled out its Mega Blockbuster Sale campaign with Ranveer Singh, Rohit Sharma and Rashmika Mandana, but also roped in a wide range of nano (under 10,000 followers) and micro influencers (up to 1,00,000 followers). “The nine celebrities we have are relatable figures with pan-India fan following and a strong regional presence in the deeper parts of Bharat. But influencers help build higher consideration for the brand,” says Megha Agarwal, CXO growth, Meesho.

With people often filtering out ads online, influencer marketing is a given in any marketing mix today. Ankit Agarwal, founder and CEO at Do Your Thng, a creator-first platform, explains that the golden rule in effective influencer marketing is creator-brand synergy. “The creator has to fit the brand’s ethics, persona and messaging. Think of influencer discovery as walking a tightrope,” he observes, adding that one wrong step could do far more harm than good.

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