Blogging is a great career opportunity and it works best, feels Harsh Agrawal, when you do it in your style while leveraging available data.
Looking back his career as a blogger and entrepreneur, one of the most beautiful moments for Harsh Agrawal was to be felicitated at his alma mater. It was something he had never expected to ever happen to the average student he was back in the day. In conversation with Social Samosa, he talks about his journey so far.
Looking back, where did it all begin?
It all started one fine day when I was browsing the internet in my final year of engineering. I bumped into something called BlogSpot, and I was like, this is so cool! I could now document my learning and share it with the world. It was just a typical BlogSpot blog which did not last for long.
After I completed my course, I joined a call centre while waiting for joining date from Accenture, and started ShoutMeLoud. The call centre was a tough night job, but my passion for writing kept get going, and within a few months, it got excellent traction. At the same time, I discovered something called “AdSense” and “Affiliate marketing,” which is available for anyone to join, and my perspective on blogging changed. When I made my first few hundred dollars, for me, it was too good to be true.
What’s in the name?
Shout – Me – Loud = Speak your mind and let it shout via a medium called blogging.
What is your USP in this cluttered space? How does your content give you an edge?
I believe it has to do with the intent. Being a blogger and entrepreneur who started without any godfather, everything was self-discovered. This put me into a unique situation to understand what any blogger would require to scale up and become successful. ShoutMeLoud is full of DIY tips, practical content and relevant examples.
Please take us through your content creation process. How do you stay relevant and relatable?
We decide on what content to produce based on reader comments and queries, usability, keyword research.
How do you make moolah with your efforts?
I use avenues like affiliate marketing, selling e-books and sponsored posts.
How do you maintain editorial objectivity with the influx of brand briefs?
I’m very picky when it comes to working with brands. One of ShoutMeLoud core value is no one should lose money because of us. So, we have a process to evaluate the products before writing about them. This makes the process little slow, but eventually, it works best for all 3: Our readers, Brand and ShoutMeLoud.
One instance/experience that made it all worthwhile
Due to my work at ShoutMeLoud, I received the entrepreneurship award from my college. Being an average student, I never thought something like this would ever happen. That day, while addressing a hall full of students, I had said, “Never let anyone tell you what to do in your life, go out and make your own path, it will be worth it.” I was a moment I will always cherish.
If not blogging, you would be?
A day in your life…
I start my day early around 6 am with a yoga session. Maintaining a planner helps me with my target of doing at least three significant things every day. It usually contains stuff like writing, optimising blog and replying to comments. On some days, I work for over 12 hours, on others, I don’t. On average, I work for about 6 hours a day. Back in the day, I could work for 14-16 hours a day! Every week, I try to meet at least 2-3 entrepreneurs to learn from their journey and experience.
Message/tips for upcoming bloggers
Blogging is a great career opportunity, and it works best when you do it in your style while taking advantage of available data. Do use tools like SEMRush, Ahrefs, and other competitive analysis tools to level up your game.
Follow top bloggers in your industry and see what they are doing, and always ask why they are doing it. This is the shortcut to your successful career. Last but not least, never stop learning. More than speed, it’s the consistency that can take you places.
Your Favorite Influencer
Shivam Ahuja for his inspiring work for the community.
The Future you foresee for your Personal Brand
Inspiration for the generation to not be defined by where they are from. At times, success can be achieved without having any godfather or support.