An Insight Into the World of an Instagram Influencer: Sophiya Fernandes

Note: The interview is part of our series on: 'Top Influencers' as part of a build-up to: 'Youth Leadership Conference 10.0'. You can find out more about the conference here.

What led you to start your page on Instagram and what is it about?

I used to love writing long detailed reviews on Zomato since 2012, along with capturing images of food much before I even knew that people were already showcasing their work on Instagram. A few friends told me that I should display my photos on Instagram last year (June 2018). I was already using the name “PIZZAWALI” on Zomato and when I made my new account on Instagram, I continued with the name “PIZZAWALI”. It was when I received my very first invite from a PR through Zomato and happened to go for my first bloggers meet, that’s when the conversations educated me on how Instagram works and how well some influencers are doing.

Pizza, in particular, is something I have devoured since I was a kid and till date, something I have never been wearied of. Along with pizza’s, I also love exploring all sorts of food. Being from Mumbai, a city that I have sunk deep into. There is nothing better than exploring Mumbai street food for me, where I get to explore the parts of Mumbai that I have never seen before and it makes me fall in love with this city even more. I try to display all sorts of content on my page and try to hybridize it as much as I can as it helps me be more creative and learn more about types of food. I also love cooking and try to create some recipes on my own and showcase it in the videos I present on the platform.

How would you distinguish the term blogger from an influencer?

There is, of course, a very big difference between these two words. A blogger is someone who has a blog; a personal space where they meticulously give attention to detail and every post is richly crafted. An Influencer is someone who has a very strong social presence and can influence people with their ideas or in marketing products.

Is it financially sustainable to be an influencer today?

I believe, that your work speaks for you. Everything depends on how you present your work and how creative you can get with it. For e.g.: I was offered a beauty product some months ago, and being a food influencer I really didn’t know how to go about it and it took me about four days after using the products and testing them that I would present them with pizza as a backdrop and how those products help my skin in the process of junk food damaging it.

A lot of effort goes into presenting your product, photographing it, the lighting etc. I usually have about 650 photos in my camera from a single invite or street food tour.

Is it financially sustainable? It can definitely be if you set your bar high and if you are doing something different and unique. The more you are recognized, the more work you will get. Hard work always pays off.

What do you think influences consumer behaviour?

As long as there is credibility to the information provided and evidence of its authenticity I believe the ratio of sales is higher. Advertising is one of the largest industries out there and brands approach influencers to promote their products all the time.

Your opinion on Instagram contemplating removing likes option for posts.

They are considering removing the “likes” option because many people have come to define their self worth based on the likes their pictures get, a fact that needs to be addressed and so the argument in favour of removing likes is a cogent one, but I hope Instagram works out some way of identifying pictures that aren’t of a personal nature (like food and travel pictures) as the likes option for these I think has little psychological impact on the posters self-esteem.

Instagram believes that the viewers should focus on the content rather than concentrating on the number of likes. The commercial market of Instagram might slow down if this change takes place because brands approach you according to the numbers of followers and the sort of engagement you achieve on your posts, but I am sure there is always another way that will find itself after the change takes place.

What is your idea of success or your mantra in life?

I believe we should keep pushing ourselves to do better and our only competition should be with our self. We need to do better than what we did yesterday and that is the only way your talent will be recognized. Have the right attitude, put in all your hard work and have a specific mindset with plans and targets and you will definitely achieve what is in store for you. Hurdles and criticisms are only stepping-stones to success. Accept it with a positive mind; it is all a part of the learning process. “Giving up” should not be a part of your dictionary to success. My mantra in life is to always be as helpful as I can. Sharing your knowledge with others also helps you in learning more.

Sophiya Fernandes

I have been born and brought up in Mumbai, acquired a Major in English Literature. Started my own business dealing with electronics nine years ago and ventured into my second business in fashion and clothing 3 years ago. I love reading, cooking and painting.

An Insight Into the World of an Instagram Influencer: Sophiya Fernandes An Insight Into the World of an Instagram Influencer: Sophiya Fernandes Reviewed by EMN on November 10, 2019 Rating: 5

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* The views expressed in the above article are of the writer and not Eat My News.
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