How I became one of the 100 most influential Indians online in just 1 year?

Once upon a time I was an average Indian living an average life.

I was introduced to the power of blogging and digital marketing in December 2010 and since then I have not looked back.

I decided to quit my job and become a full time Online Branding consultant one year back. I had two options viz. to set up an organization, hire staff and create a digital agency or to create my own personal brand and be an example to the people who want to develop personal brands (and thus get consulting/coaching business). I decided to use the latter option.


Though I had created a Blog (this blog rather) six months back which had already got listed on Alltop.com but I was hardly devoting 2-3 hours a day with the pressures of a fulltime job. Since the Blog was a hit already, taking risk to quit my job was not a wild risk. 

Moreover a digital marketing coach based in Mumbai was guiding me on how to use a step by step approach. The coach had excellent digital marketing knowledge and I learnt myself about social media manners/soft skills/behavioral skills required for success on social media. I worked hard to build my knowledge in these areas as I considered them critical for my success and due to a marketing/branding background I was already familiar with branding principles and concepts.

I worked an average of 7-8 hours per day online for the next one year including writing/posting content on the Blog, making new connections, conversing with friends (& building relationships) and of course promoting my Blogs and microblogs on social media. (I have cut it down to 4-5 hours per day now due to the work pouring in.)

Few days back when I saw my name among the 100 most influential Indians online (based on Klout scores and prepared by Pinstorm.com, Mumbai, scroll and click the orange colour Klout button to see my current rank), it was a thrilling moment. Moreover I ranked 65 (out of 100), though the rank changes every day.




Here are my tips to create online influence quickly and create a powerful personal brand:-

1. Quality content-Write great content on current issues and problems being faced by people. A post which I wrote, “Are you a romantic-emotional fool?” ranks on Page 1 of Google global searches even today after 1 year. People are emotional and especially Indians and often end up making a fool of themselves in the process. Even I did :-) 

In fact, I use a term mindful content for great content, because my best content comes after a meditation session.

2. Passionate engagement-If you genuinely love people, you will not feel that you are wasting time commenting on social media. Use high energy words which motivate and energize people and you are bound to create a great community online.

3. Heartfelt collaboration-Collaborate with people by putting complete trust (you must make the right connections for that) and build their brands. Inspire trust in others and look for people who inspire trust in you. It will boomerang on your brand if your network respects your knowledge, skills, attitudes, wisdom, and caring attitude and so on.

4. Social Media Tips-Obviously one needs to learn the social media tips and often do a trial and error to learn. Some tips will work for you and some won’t. Then there are also platform specific tips for e.g. Twitter specific tips. I have been specially successful on Facebook because it is very popular in India and helps me make a more informal relationship or connect with people. 

Also, a step by step structured approach is necessary, otherwise you will be generating great content without building the right audience and connections.

5. Personal Growth-Though personal growth has always been associated with personal branding, I realized that personal growth is necessary to become successful on social media. As I grew as a person, my popularity on social media increased (continuous personal growth has been my lifelong philosophy) and people shared my content more and more. 

I even developed my "Enlarge, Excel and Evolve" model (inspired by sister-friend and thought leader in corporate consciousness Jennifer Sertl) based on this fact, which has been a runaway success.

6. A dose of Motivation-Are my efforts paying off? This question keeps troubling us. Klout solved this problem as it has been showing me, an increasing online score, increasing true reach and so on. Looking at the Klout analytics has motivated me to carry on.

I find it a little funny that I am more influential than Dr Manmohan Singh's PMO (Prime Minister Office) but his offline influence is 100 times more than me for sure. :-)

And I live happily thereafter. :-)

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