In conversation with Simrun Chopra, who turned her battle with PCOS, weight gain, depression and endometriosis into a solutions platform called Nourish with Sim. Today, she is a certified nutritionist, fitness enthusiast and lifestyle influencer with 97.5k followers (and counting) on Instagram. With meal plans and training programs, Simrun shares some advice and recommendations for aspiring influencers who wish to enter this competitive space and create a legitimate money-making brand for themselves.
1. What’s your educational and professional background?
I have nutrition certifications from the USA, an MBA from Lancaster University UK, and I ranked 1st in Bachelors of Computer Application.
2. What prompted you to get into fitness and nutrition as a career?
Fitness and nutrition was a privilege of the elite. Women from different backgrounds were resorting to free YouTube content from sketchy sources to find ways to get fit and healthy.
The social media world was riddled with fancy ingredients that seemed to require unrealistic changes to one’s core lifestyle, and also were only affordable by people of a certain economic status. This made something so basic as being fit an aspirational goal that felt out of reach for the majority of women across India, especially in small towns.
3. Did you always know you wanted to work in this space?
Not at all, but I finally found my passion and calling, even if quite late in my life. My post-marriage weight gain and pre-existing PCOS flared up. I was looking for solutions for my own personal problems. Eventually, it paved the way for my platform, Nourish with Sim, because I knew there were many women out there like me with similar problems and unrealistic and unrelatable solutions.
4. What was your first milestone in this career and how did you get there?
I would say making a difference to the first person, when I saw results and their trust I knew I could help more women. It just reinforced my reason for starting out in the first place.
5. How long did it take you to make money from your venture?
It took me less than a year to make money, however I invested it right back in to ensure I continue to provide value. The turning point was when I realised I could no longer operate as an individual and this needed to be structured, so I went on to register the company and hire more people.
6. Do you market online/offline? What works better for your brand?
For my brand, or me, credibility and trust is everything. I do not market my programs aggressively. If someone believes in me and looks at me as a good investment to achieve their health goals, I know they will come to me when they need to. I find that creating online awareness works best for me.
7. What are your tips for an aspirant who wants to enter this space?
Never fear competition, embrace it instead and you will see yourself grow.
8. Are there any online/offline courses you would recommend?
I would highly recommend everyone to work on their communication and thinking skills. I, personally, am an active member of one of India’s oldest and largest Toastmasters Club. It is a self-driven program for better thinking, better listening and better speaking.
9. What are your tips for someone who wants to generate work opportunities in this field?
Opportunities are everywhere, you have to just be open to seeing them. Networking is important; be helpful and present, no matter where you are. In my field, it’s simpler because everyone wants to be healthy, or try to be healthy.
10. What are some investments one should be ready to make when trying to create a brand or become an influencer in the fitness and nutrition space?
To become an influencer I would recommend spending time understanding the platform you are on. Understand the technology that drives it, the competition, and continue learning, especially when it comes to feature updates. Keeping your knowledge up-to-date is key.
The online world is a visual medium so once you decide on your platform, learn how to make content for it. It can mean learning to shoot and edit videos or spruce up your photography game. What you definitely should not do, is think you know it all or spend too much on equipment in the beginning. Find your niche, understand what is relevant to you and your audience and work on that.
For more information on Nourish With Sim, find her on Instagram.
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