The delight of content creation that lured Garima Bhaskar has now lead to a full-fledged blog covering verticals like technology, travel, and more.
In this interview with Social Samosa, Garima Bhaskar shares her journey of content creation – from poetry on social issues to pieces that touch upon varied verticals.
Looking back, where did it all begin?
All of it began in my second year at college. I started by helping friends with tech content for their site. As it continued, I realized how much I enjoyed the process. I created my blog in 2016 with no high hopes. For almost n year, I posted just once a month. Fast forward to now, my blog is one of my sources of income.
What’s in the name?
The blog was originally named ‘GarimaWrites’ because I made it with the intention to share my poetry and thoughts on social issues. Along the course of blogging, I had more things to say and share, which didn’t fit into the restricted spectrum of poetry & social issues. That’s when I decided to rename it to ‘GarimaShares’.
What is your USP in this cluttered space? How does your content give you an edge?
I want people to be informed. Knowledge is the ultimate power and I believe the more you share, the more you gain. My content has an edge as I avoid using tacky headlines, clickbait to get people to read my posts. I want people to be genuinely interested without luring them in through tactics. The different categories on the blog have different purposes. For example, Blogging Guide is aimed at teaching people how to build their blog from scratch and start earning from it.
Please take us through your content creation process. How do you stay relevant and relatable?
My viewers are everything! Their feedback and analysis is the most important thing that affects my ideation process. I put myself in their shoes and think, ‘What do I need help with? Knowing what would make my life easier?’ Google Trends is my handy tool. I keep a check on the trending topics and share my views on them. I try staying relatable by keeping the language of the posts conversational. I don’t want people to feel like they’re reading a boring guide book. It should feel like a conversation between two people interested in the same topics.
How do you make moolah with your efforts?
I still remember the excitement I felt when I got my first gig from the blog. It was an invite from Lemon Tree Hotels to visit their newly built Sandal Suites, they sent a car, a guided tour too. From then on, I worked harder and found new ways to earn from the blog. Some of them are affiliate marketing, paid promotional posts and paid reviews. Brand collaborations are a great way to earn and also build a reputation for yourself in the process.
How do you maintain editorial objectivity with the influx of brand briefs?
I wouldn’t lie, the restrictions are a bit hard to follow. But if I was a brand and I had to approach a blogger to post about my product, I’d be doing the same. It is essential to understand what the brand is looking for because ultimately you need to work together in the best way possible. In a way, the editorial objectivity pushes me to look at things through a different perspective. Challenges are always a good thing, no matter how hard they are, there’s always something to learn from each one of them.
One instance/experience that made it all worthwhile
When I got the first comment on a post from a stranger. Otherwise, it sometimes felt like all the content I’m working on and posting is falling into a distant void. That comment was a validation that somewhere, someone is interested in what I have to say. And there might be more.
Weirdest brand brief/request ever
Haha, there’s one that stands out from the rest. Quite recent actually. I was in conversation with a PR of some YouTuber and she wanted me to write a promotional post for her client, share it on social media, with no briefs given and wait-for-it, for free! When I asked her budget she blatantly told me how atrocious of me it is to ask for money for this.
If not blogging, you would be?
Photographer, I’m already that. I am pursuing both of them together at the moment. Majorly I’m a Fashion Photographer but I often take up projects related to interior, food and product.
A day in your life….
A day in my life will either be spent behind my laptop screen replying to an email or out in the sun shooting. I’m a night owl. About 80% of my errands are taken care of while the world sleeps. My day begins with drafting a blog post, scheduling it on social media along with replying to brand’s emails and scrolling through my Instagram feed for inspiration. Being a freelancer, you are your own boss but you are also your own employee. There’s no one else to put the blame on, you’ve to take responsibility for every step you take,
Message/tips for upcoming bloggers
Don’t question your ability. There are enough people around to do that. Nobody can motivate you more than you yourself. It’s your dream, it needs your efforts. Don’t give up! It is a gradual process. You’ll get where you want to be only with determination and perseverance. All of the days you worked tirelessly will be worth it the day you get your first paid gig.
You’ve created a masterpiece to the best of your abilities, not to the best of everybody’s abilities. If you trap yourself in thinking it is not good enough, nobody is going to read it anyway, there are so many people out there better than me, etc. I’m going to tell you that you are absolutely right. Failures come and go. What you can learn from each failure is how to handle the next one better. It is better to go for it and fail rather than sit weighing your options, watching the time slip away.
Your Favorite Influencer
I’m more into Tech and Fashion, my favourite Fashion Influencer is Santoshi Shetty and in Tech, it is Harsh Agarwal, founder of the ShoutMeLoud.
The Future you foresee for your Personal Brand
I want to build GarimaShares into a site where people get answers to the questions they’re most troubled from. Through the tech niche, I want my viewers to be tech-savvy and know their way around the latest tech updates. Through the blogging niche, I want my viewers to run their own blog and earn a decent income from it. Through the Lifestyle niche, I want to share my thoughts on the sensitive topics in the society which are often misunderstood.
Gender equality and animal welfare concern me the most. With society modernizing every day, we are forgetting the diverse wildlife we have been gifted with.
Change is inevitable, but the betterment of the future at the cost of losing what our mother nature gives us isn’t what we should strive for.