Ankita Chawla is a Gen Z creative marketer who is enthusiastic about social media, content production, and brand building. Since being featured by several renowned publications, she has dedicated herself to honing her art and passing it on to other aspirant visual content creators throughout the world.
You can find her work on her Instagram account @hustlerani, where she showcases her passion for skating, shares informative reels, and assists small businesses and creators to grow on Instagram.
We at Edugraph had an interaction with Ankita where we talked about everything from 9-5 job myth-busting to side hustles, creating content, IG Bootcamp, and much more.
1. In today’s time, is having a 9-5 job overrated?
I feel having a 9-5 is a true luxury if it meets your basic needs, gives you the freedom to explore your passions, and gives you the time to rest. A 9-5 is only overrated depending on how well you use your time outside of those hours. It is all about balance in life, between everything.
2. Why do you recommend that people have a side hustle in addition to a 9 - 5 job?
I recommend people have a side hustle along with a 9-5 job because people have so many talents and there are so many skills to start with. For instance, if you’re on social media, knowing design can’t hurt the pocket. If you’re a video editor, knowing how to add subtitles isn’t a bad idea either. And if you’re a marketing manager, knowing paid advertising doesn’t harm you. While these are just examples, each and every one of us are much more than what our 9-5 job descriptions ask of us. I can’t recommend polishing and monetising your industry skills for a side hustle enough.
3. How is hustling at your 9-5 job and then again hustling for creating content & market yourself on the internet any different?
The hustle, the grind, the work, whatever the cool word is today, will always be the same for both a 9-5 job & a side hustle. But it’s obviously closer to the heart when I share my personal stories vs. when I help a brand carefully narrate theirs.
4. Doing a 9 to 5 job and creating content is a challenge. How far do you agree with the statement?
I agree… and I will let you know when I’ve solved this challenge myself!
5. How should one ensure that their side hustle doesn’t interfere with their 9-5?
Waking up early helps. Taking out 10 mins during my lunch break helps. Taking a break post 6 pm helps. And dedicating my weekend completely towards my content plan helps the most. This way it is possible to not have your 9-5 interfere with your content creation schedule.
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6. Did you always want to do content creation? What got you interested?
I have always had an artistic flair, thanks to my mother, she exposed me to a world of different skills - painting, skating, writing, swimming, debating, photography and so much more. I feel our career choices as adults are just an amalgamation of the activities we enjoyed the most in our childhood. I enjoy creating, thoroughly. And I believe every decision in my career has led me to this point.
7. Which aspect of content creation do you enjoy the most?
Posting videos is one of the best parts of content creation and I enjoy making videos for my social media.
8. Do you ever have a creative block? How should one deal with a creative block?
Yes, we all face creative blocks at times. To deal with a creative block, one has to be patient with oneself, focus on how they are doing mentally and take breaks - long and often.
9. Could you briefly tell us about the Instagram Bootcamp that you host monthly?
The Instagram Creator Bootcamp is a 2.5-hour workshop that brings together a community of upcoming small business owners, creators, freelancers, artists, social media specialists, etc. to engage in an information-filled session on how to build a strong brand on Instagram. In this workshop, I share my experiences and learnings as a creator, divided into 3 main chapters. The workshop is all about content planning, reel tips, and my personalised tips on how to make the most of Instagram’s features.
10. What should be the ideation process for creating content?
Write, write, write! It’s the origin story of every great idea. Even before you shoot, write.
11. Do you use any tools to check your analytics and engagement on social media?
No, I don’t use any tools to check analytics and engagement on social media. Numbers stress me out on IG. So, the analytics section on IG is enough for me, I guess.
12. Every day there’s a new trend on social media, how can one be original and unique in their content?
Every trend on the internet can be simplified into a plain insight. Think of that one quirk relevant to your industry, and plug it in. What works on the internet is not just jumping on trends, but actually adding your own twist to them.
13. What is the impact of social media on internet marketing?
I believe there has never been a better time to market on the internet. It’s possible for a tiny brand in a tier 2 city today to have access to customers from different parts of the country. Social media has of course completely removed the need for a physical shopping experience for both the buyer and the seller. But the trust factor is still reigning supreme. Marketers on the internet cannot underestimate the need for testimonials on their pages to build trustworthy relationships with their community.
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14. How can one generate more engagement on social media?
There’s only one way to engage and it is by actually talking to people on the app!
15. Any words of wisdom for people who want to start creating content on social media and for those who want to juggle between content creation and 9-5?
To everyone who’s gonna start creating content on social media, don’t stress the first reel and just hit post. Best of luck, and happy creating!