MissMalini’s take on the booming influencer economy

In a recent conversation with YourStory’s Influencers Inc, Malini Agarwal, aka MissMalini, shares valuable insights about the growing influencer economy and how it has massively evolved in recent times.
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The creator economy is booming. In fact, the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated this sudden spurt in the inflow of new-age influencers in this economy. 

While several content creators are just starting their journey, Malini Agarwal, aka MissMalini, has been reigning in this space for over 13 years. She is the founder of MissMalini Entertainment — a leading media network that extensively covers entertainment, fashion, and lifestyle. 

Malini Agarwal aka MissMalini

When she started, Malini says, terminologies such as “creator” or “influencer” were not as popular as it is today. She has witnessed the growth and evolution of the industry over the years and the opportunities it provided to several people.

Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic led lockdown, the advertising space suffered a setback as traditional mediums, such as billboards or signs, were neither feasible nor visible to the consumers.

Thus, influencers on various social media channels became an important part of brand advertising. Many brands started collaborating with influencers for the first time, and brands that were already leveraging influencers started doubling down. 

“I think well-planned, well-executed influencer marketing campaigns have been very successful, and it’s interesting because when I started, people didn’t know about this,” Malini tells YourStory’s Influencers Inc.

The beginning of MissMalini

Malini took up blogging as a creative outlet to write about things she is truly passionate about. However, she did not realise the core of content creation is an authentic interest, which, in her case, was around Bollywood, lifestyle, and fashion.

Although living in different parts of the world, Malini says she missed Bollywood dearly. She used to consume pop culture magazines everywhere she went, which had a little bit of everything. 

“I didn’t feel that I needed to restrict myself to one particular genre. It was kind of a catch-all of all the things Malini loves,” she says. 

She started creating content by writing about her own experiences, but that was limiting. In current times, choosing a niche or a spectrum for content creation is an important part of getting started, Malini says, adding that planning is a key component, but overplanning can be a mistake.

It is important to focus on authenticity and the quality of content. For instance, Instagram Reels are now a big thing that helps people hop onto trends. 

However, one of the big mistakes she made was starting MissMalini as a Bollywood gossip site. She later realised she would not want to be someone that tore other people down for clickbait. “It’s been such a great and fulfilling journey to be a positive first media company,” she says. 

Malini believes in the next five-10 years, there are going to be jobs that don’t exist today, and people are going to create content on topics that most of us don’t know now.

She adds everything starts somewhere, and just because it does not exist today, doesn’t mean it won’t. 

“Seize your individuality and your uniqueness and use it as your superpower,” says Malini. 

In the rapid-fire segment of the interview, Malini expresses her wish to interview Amir Khan someday and her love for the Canadian sitcom Schitt’s Creek. She describes herself as an “enthu-cutlet,” optimistic, and unforgettable.

Edited by Suman Singh

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