THE THIRTY-FOURTH INSTALMENT OF THE BELLEBOSS SERIES
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I hoped that with this series, I would find a way to appreciate the incredible South Asian women of our generation, who are breaking boundaries and paving new paths for themselves. Moreover, I would like you to take a little bit of your time to realize how incredible the women around you are.
Especially if you are a woman! I know that at least one woman’s story in my #BelleBoss series will inspire you to follow your dreams, your vision and most importantly your heart. Even if that means breaking a few rules and many societal prejudices along the way.
Just a little introduction to yourself?
I’m 24, grew up in Hong Kong and then I moved to LA for college. My co-founders and I run our own content creation company now, based in Mumbai but servicing clients globally. We started off super tiny, quite literally out of my living room, as a pure content creation agency, and now we’re more of a “one-stop social shop”. We expanded to integrated full-service production quicker than we expected.
Who inspires you as a person?
Honestly, I’ve been lucky enough to surround myself with some incredibly talented and overachieving people. My immediate circle is out there doing some great stuff on the daily and it’s the best push for me. At the moment I take a lot of inspiration from young founders who have conquered relatively new spaces. Emily Weiss & Negin Mirsalehi are two such people – it’s not so much what they do but how they did it. Another career I’m constantly inspired by is Eva Chen’s. Her career path is one which I have been following for a while now. She’s had the coolest career milestones, I want that!
what has been the hardest part of starting your own business
It is definitely way less sexy than you think it is going to be. It’s the entrepreneurial version of airbrushing, on paper, it looks fantastic but really it isn’t all that, not at the start for sure. There isn’t really a instructions manual that we’re sticking to, there are no rules that we have to guide us and no guaranteed way to “success”, we’re out here defining our own version of success as we grow!
The upside is we get to pave our own path, and foster a company culture, ground up, that we can be really proud of.
how did you become a red-carpet host?
Back when I was in high school, I did a ton of PR internships, assisting at events etc. I was working with a lot of producers for red carpets at the time. The summer before college, I was working for People magazine at one such event and the host was late. So, they threw me in there to fill in till the host arrived.
I was kind up for it, and the rest is history.
The producers called me back for the next season of award shows and then it just took off. I’ve done about four IIFA’s up until now, it’s something I go back for every year and each time they’ve been so good to me. From assisting to hosting to eventually producing for them. This time I went back with my agency, By The Gram (BTG), to produce 50 short films for IIFA covering all the backstage and carpet action. That was one of the biggest projects we got for BTG, and we were so small at the time, producing 50 short films with our own crew was a dream.
Totally chaotic, I don’t think any of us got much sleep for two months during the edits but it was worth it.
how would you describe your own sense of style?
It is constantly evolving – The only thing I go for really, is to make sure I’m wearing the clothes and the clothes aren’t wearing me…
What would be your slogan if someone was making a campaign about you?
Well, I asked my cofounders and they said: “oh, and one more thing…”
What are the biggest mistakes people make when using their social media platform?
I think the biggest one is losing your voice when trying to keep up with what’s going on.
It’s easy to be influenced by other people’s creatives and blindly pick it up. I think the brands that tend to do really well are those that are able to stick to their guns and keep their individuality and creativity intact. Glossier, for example, is super unique, they stick to what they know, their marketing is so uniquely them, probably got a lot to do with how quickly they’ve grown. We get so many requests to emulate other creatives or brand identities, it’s a conversation that comes up often at client meetings.
What would you say is your greatest achievement?
I’m hoping my greatest achievement hasn’t happened yet. We are working on a number of cool things for the coming future, so fingers crossed – the best is yet to come.
What would you say sets you apart from other companies in your sphere?
I would hope there are many things, but one of the key takeaways from our clients is that we help them cultivate their opinions which is perhaps why a lot of small-to-mid scale start ups come to us in the first place. Larger companies often come to us when they are ready to take on a different direction or a new trajectory.
This is who we set out to be. We want to sit down with our clients, share our thoughts and be part of a collaborative design process.
What are your dreams and hopes for yourself and the business in the future?
What my co-founders and I set out to do is very different from what our tiny start up actually blossomed into. Things happened faster and bigger than we had anticipated. So we do not want to limit ourselves to just ‘content creation’, and are currently just taking on cool design projects from anywhere in the world.
The aim is to continue designing and building digital brands from any corner of the globe. I’d like to think that’s where we’re headed.
Books that changed your life?
When I moved to Bombay, a friend from back home gave me Shantaram (typical, I know). It didn’t change my life or anything, but it was an interesting one to read right before moving here. It gave me a lens and perspective before getting cozy in the city.
Where can we find more about you?
Check out my instagram handle https://www.instagram.com/aaliya.amrin/?hl=en