A social media influencer, a radio jockey and a writer are how one can sum up Kartikesh Pai. The Mumbai-based content creator also has his own Internet radio show and a YouTube channel where he narrates short written pieces. Also, on his over 10k followers Instagram page, Kartikesh mostly shares his written shayaris and one-liners that helps him to connect with his followers more. He is a strong advocate in believing that it is the stupid decisions in life that help us to move ahead in life instead of the planned ones.
“I HAVE GOT MY OWN INSTAGRAM PAGE, WITH OVER 10K FOLLOWERS, BUT NOT ALL OF IT WAS RAISED IN ONE NIGHT, IT’S A LONG PROCESS TO GO THROUGH. I AM HERE AT 10K AFTER 6 YEARS, NONE OF THE 1000 FOLLOWERS IN 10 MINUTES TRICKS WORK, TRUST ME!”kartikesh pai
Although Kartikesh’s journey to 10k followers was a long one, for him, this journey has been a fruitful one. The initial days of his six years journey were taken up in figuring out the interface, the algorithm, the whole platform itself. But his aim was always to have supporters instead of just followers. And the majority of his supporters consist of people who listened to his radio shows.
“CONTENT IS ALL ABOUT BEING RELATABLE. IF THE CONTENT YOU CREATE OR WRITE CATCHES AN EYE, YOU HAVE WHAT IT TAKES”kartikesh pai
Relatable content is the key. Kartikesh’s shayaris and one-liners are shared immensely by his followers on their pages which in turn helps him with his engagements. He loves to experiment with his content which keeps changing depending on the response given by followers. In ‘Ek Lafz ki Shayari’ a concept started by him, his followers would provide a word, and he’d create a small Shayari using that word. It has helped him substantially to connect with his followers.
Another variety of his content was ‘Marathi Patya’, inspired by notices and signboards in Pune. Here, he used to curate a board with one-liners, witty or sarcastic gags and showcased them in public. Noticed by many bigger platforms, they started to share his posts as well. This has helped him the most in terms of engagements.
“JUST LIKE I SAID, IT DIDN’T HAPPEN OVERNIGHT. I DIDN’T REALISE THE POWER THAT SOCIAL MEDIA HOLDS UNTIL 3 – 4 YEARS BACK, TILL THEN, IN MY KNOWLEDGE. IT WAS JUST A PLATFORM USED FOR WHAT AUNTIES DO FROM ONE WINDOW TO ANOTHER – BRAG AND GOSSIP!”kartikesh pai
Even though Kartikesh started using Instagram in 2014, it was a little later he understood the potential this platform possesses. The content that brought a significant uprising in his career as an influencer was his very first post on ‘Marathi Patya’ where he talked about forts and the heritage it holds. Soon after it went viral and people started talking about it. Kartikesh even remembers that people started giving Whatsapp status as well as forwarding that post. This idea of ‘Marathi Patya’ was suggested to him by his school friend Rashee Joshi.
“I’M NOT BEING MODEST; I SERIOUSLY AM VERY CHILL, NOTHING LIKE AN INFLUENCER. I WEAR SHORTS, MEET UP WITH MY FRIENDS ON A CHAI TAPRI AND TALK. THAT’S HOW I GO ON WITH BEING RJ KARTIKESH”kartikesh pai
Kartikesh reveals that he never considers himself as an influencer but a writer and then a good friend. He never wanted to be an influencer on the first hand; he only craves to connect to the general audience, and he achieves that by being one.
His understanding of the pros and cons that come with Niche Marketing has helped him to grow and nurture his page. He gathered this knowledge after working with BhaDiPa (Bhartiya Digital Party), which did Niche marketing and played their content very relatable and connecting. The poetries, shayaris, stories or pieces are only the reflection of what everybody goes through. This is why his audiences feel connected with his content at such a high level.
“IT’S ALL ABOUT BEING ONE OF THE HERDS. PEOPLE HAVE A VERY COLLECTIVE APPROACH TO EVERYTHING; THEY WILL LEARN AND FOLLOW, THEN PASS ON”kartikesh pai
Kartikesh points out that instead of casting a celebrity to endorse a brand, they should instead go for a local approach. And this has become easily available due to influencer marketing. He further mentions that the audience will believe an influencer more than a celebrity as influencers along with being an entertainer like a celebrity are also regular people. When a brand is looking out for an influencer, he suggests that the only formula working in this field would be ‘Connection-Credibility-Content’. At the moment, he is associated with two major influencer marketing platforms- Futwork and Kofluence. They help him to get campaigns, however many brands also connect with him via dm or mail.
Due to his experiment with his content, Kartikesh has worked with various types of brands including Frapp, Godrej, Cinthol beard oil, Starbucks, McDonalds, Thephylife Beard, Dominos, Fandom Realm Store and many more. And in the near future, he would love to work with Nestle Maggie.
“CHALLENGES AND PROBLEMS ARE COMPLEMENTARY – THEY COME ALONG WITH THE PACKAGE, AND IT’S MENTIONED IN THE TERMS AND CONDITIONS WHEN YOU SIGN UP TO BECOME AN INFLUENCER”kartikesh pai
In these recent times, unfortunately, Kartikesh is going through a whole lot of cyber-bullying and hatred on social media. However, this didn’t stop him as his code of conduct believes in keeping the show on track and keep working more and more towards achieving his objectives.
“Be real, Be stupid, just once, really often.” Kartikesh advises all the upcoming influencers.