My Idea of Success Is Making a Difference in People's Lives - Anindita Chatterjee

1. Tell us about your background and journey.

I was born and brought up in Kolkata. I did my schooling there till 12th after which I moved to Nagpur University for engineering. I moved to Mumbai and started working in Hindustan Unilever. 

I worked at HUL for 9 years and while working I did a part-time MBA from NMIMS. While doing my MBA I realized that marketing was my calling. I got to work with really good brands like Dove, Pears & Vim over five to six years. My last job was as CMO at Rentokil Pest Control India. 

I quit my job in the month of February and since then I have been working full time on Travel Chatter. I am very passionate about traveling and have been to 65 countries. I have been traveling a lot for the past 15 years and it was only four years back that I decided to start Travel Chatter. 

So as Travel Chatter started gaining momentum, I’ve decided to go full time for a few months before I go back to my corporate life.

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

After having traveled to 65 countries I am of course sitting on a treasure trove of experiences and a million stories to tell people. So, I thought, why not start a page on a platform where I can inspire people to travel through my stories. 

I absolutely believe in motivating people to chase their dreams and follow their passion. Their lives should not just be about getting a job, paying bills, and taking care of your family. Spend time on yourself, do all the things you love doing. 

After a few years when you look back, you should be proud of what you’ve done. My Instagram page is all about telling people to follow their dreams, showing people what travel has done to me as a person, and to inspire people to become optimistic.

3. What does travel feel like to you?

I love to travel. There’s nothing as exciting as exploring a new country. I completely believe in what Helen Keller said, "Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all." 

I like pushing myself out of my comfort zone and doing things that I would’ve never done even in my wildest dreams apart from the stunning landscapes, meeting new people, and soaking into the culture of the country that I am in. 

Travel has made me fearless and whenever I travel my heart is filled with gratitude. It has helped me handle disappointment in a much better way. Most importantly, it makes me feel alive.

4. Being a travel photographer, how would you spice up your traveling portfolio to avoid monotonous photos? 

I am not just confined to travel pictures. In recent months, traveling has been restricted due to coronavirus. And if you put up just traveling pictures, people won’t be able to relate to you. 

As I’ve been a marketeer, to me it's always important to put myself in my customer's shoes and curate my content accordingly. So, to avoid monotony I put pictures of my dogs, which most of the Instagrammers really enjoy. My two dogs, Pluto and Sara are, I think by now, celebrities on Instagram. 

When I am not traveling, sometimes I talk about staying productive & positive, I talk about food, fitness, and my day to day life. I always try to inspire people to take care of their mental, physical, and emotional well-being.

5. What do you think influences consumer behavior?

During my time as a marketeer, we used to collaborate with influencers to promote our products, and now I am an influencer myself. So I have been on both sides of the table. One thing I'd like to stress upon is consumer connection. 

It's about emotionally connecting with your brand. No matter what brand you are promoting it should be relevant to the consumer and you should understand what your customer needs. 

Only when you put yourself in your customers' shoes will you be able to actually understand their preference and what you can offer them. It is all about striking the right chord with the consumer. During this time of corona, it is not favorable for a business to push sales. 

Every business is bleeding. Customers need our trust and we need brand loyalty. So, in order to drive that you have to empathize with the customer and get them to trust you.

6. What do you think influences consumer behavior?

My idea of success is making a difference in people's lives. Success is equivalent to happiness. 

My mantra in life is to never ever give up and to be positive. Optimism is a happiness magnet and the fact that You are not defined by what happens to you but what you do with what happens to you. 

I’d like to quote another favorite of mine, "A mind is a place of its own and in itself, it can create a hell of a heaven and a heaven of hell".

7. How can someone become a successful social media influencer?

My top five tips are, firstly it's all about being yourself. Make sure whatever you put on social media is real and it is you. 

Secondly, connect with your audience. No matter big or small your audience is all about connecting with them and interacting with them. Then I would say be consistent and regular. 

Fourthly, you have to optimize your profile on social media. You have to grab the attention of Instagrammers and you have got probably five seconds to do that so, ensure that your profile/bio is extremely interesting. And finally, keep innovating

8. Which is your favorite book and why?

My two favorite books would be The 4-Hour Work Week and Happiness Advantage. The 4-Hour Work Week is by Tim Ferriss. And I totally love the book. It has really changed my perspective towards how I optimize the entire week and then 24 hours in a day. 

After reading the book I’ve created the six wins of my life. It also taught me to not focus on things that I can’t add value to. Happiness advantage is also a great book that I read during the lockdown. It is a great read on positive psychology.

- Anindita Chatterjee

- Interviewed By: Amruta Liz Binoy