With a background in 360 degree advertising, Niyagra Hora decided to explore the new wave of social media marketing. Currently working as an Associate Consultant with Percept Profile, she has also had a stint with Pune-based Paradigm Plus working on clients from diverse fields like education, real estate, tourism and FMCG. Though an “active user”, she does make it clear that she is no social media addict.
Since your job revolves around tracking things happening in this space, tell me some of the unusual or memorable things you have come across on Twitter or Facebook?
Recently, I noticed an acquaintance on Facebook posting "Reading Half Girlfriend by Chetan Bhagat. What an amazing story!,” something obviously false and absolutely weird. I, however, maintain my own reservations while sharing my experiences on social media, keeping in mind that there is a fine line between excitement and stupidity.
What attracts you to social media?
This medium is enlightening and erratic simultaneously. What I love is noticing trends. I also get amazed seeing users doing indirect marketing of product lines by either checking into or liking them. For them, it is an experience. For brands, it is free visibility. That is why lifestyle brands are more elevated on social media, because they highlight and magnify your peer group.
How do you separate professional and personal life on social media? Is that a challenge?
Firstly, when it’s social it’s definitely not personal.
I am not a social media addict, but a fairly active user. I might not be posting hashtags and selfies on the spur of a moment, but I am well aware of how the digital medium works. I won't share details of which restaurant I am checking into, or where I am at present. That would dilute the level of privacy I want to maintain.
What are Indian brands lacking in their social media strategy?
Indian brands should concentrate more on getting younger people to handle their social media because they are much mobile and tech savvy. It’s like using a steamboat in Bahamas rather than a paddle boat. Fayol's principle depicts similarly that social and material order get best results.
What made you take up social media as a profession? What does your typical word day look like?
I am lucky to be part of a new breed of employees. Working for a social media entity lets me be on the internet for the whole day, which is great. And it gives me the liberty to architect a virtual avatar for a brand. For a media enthusiast, that is soul food. This is what attracts me and made me take it up as my profession.
If not social media, where do you think you would have been?
Other than social media, I would have been into brand planning, which functions quite like social media.