Saloni Srivastava, founder of Hustle Post Academy, in an exclusive chat with G20, talks about her endeavours.

Excerpts:
Q. Would you enlighten our readers about the journey you have had so far?
A. Social media is definitely a big part of all of our lives now. People like me have built our entire careers on it.
Honestly, for me I spent my entire life doing things a little differently from what was expected of me.
When the entire world wanted me to keep rising the corporate ladder and continue to work on my full-time, high-paying job, I decided to quit and start my own online business journey.
I first began with content creation and chose Youtube as my platform. After 2 years of regular work on it, I managed to build a strong community of over 300,000 people there.
From there, I started working on building several parallel businesses. I soon launched my own line of planners and journals and then moved on to building India’s first e-commerce platform built especially for Influencers.
This year, in the midst of the pandemic, I also launched my own Academy to train people to use social media for building fruitful careers and business ventures just like I did.
It definitely has been a worthwhile journey so far, and it’s only the beginning.
Q. Which social media platforms have you seen the most efficacious, gaining traction, brand building & brand awareness? And why so?
A. For me personally, the biggest platform has been YouTube. Because of YouTube’s focus on long-form video content, I was able to build a deeper relationship with my audience. Youtube also has great SEO based discoverability, which makes it a perfect platform for people who’re looking to start from scratch.
Of course, I love Instagram too. It’s a one stop platform which allows one to share pictures, videos, short form stories, conduct polls, do QnAs, engage in DMs- and a whole lot more.
I think Youtube and Instagram together are a power-packed social media combo for anyone’s growth.
Q. Tell us more about Hustle Post Academy?
A. Since 2017, I had been working to curate my dream life. I started on Youtube as a content creator, but initially only as a side hustle alongside my full-time job. Gradually, I figured out my way with the right strategies and made a profitable business on Youtube. On the platform, I built one of the fastest-growing self-development communities in India.
Soon, I also launched my line of planners and journals to help my community get more organised. As the next step, I also built Upfluen, India’s first e-commerce platform for influencers in 2018.
With all this being done, one of the most asked questions I got from my community members was – “How can we start just like the way you did?”.
Well, I always tried to answer this question in my emails and Instagram DMs, it’s not easy to explain so much in a single message. So, I decided to share all my knowledge and wisdom with everyone on a bigger scale. I knew that my experience can help a lot of people start their side hustle and build profitable online businesses.
That’s exactly how “HustlePost Academy” came into existence and within a few months, has helped 2000+ millennials discover their passion!
Q. Amid the contemporary pandemic times, how crucial and important are the concepts mentorship, minimalism, and budgeting?
A. I think having a strong focus on these is more important now than ever.
The downfall of the economy showed us that there are a lot of things that are beyond our control. And while we can’t do much about the external environment, we can definitely work on ourselves to make us more ‘recession-proof’.
Having the right mentor to constantly learn from can change our lives in ways we can’t imagine.
Minimalism is a lifestyle movement that I’ve been following for over 4 years, and it’s so liberating. I deliberately remove distractions from my life to focus on things that truly make a difference.