The showrunners

Updated: 17 April, 2020 10:09 IST | Sukanya Datta | Mumbai

Social media managers of celebs and influencers, who are ensuring the stars stay in the news when "there is no news", take us behind the scenes.

Sanjay Dutt appeals people to stay fit while working out; Sidharth Malhotra cooks prawns. Pics /Instagram
Sanjay Dutt appeals people to stay fit while working out; Sidharth Malhotra cooks prawns. Pics /Instagram

The one thing that's available in abundance now is social media content. Around 75 per cent Indians spent more time on social media compared to other forms of engagement like television, in the first week of the lockdown, revealed data posted by Hammerkopf. And this includes posts from our favourite celebrities. With films and shows cancelled, they have been going live from every possible online platform to keep followers entertained. But behind a lot of these posts are entire teams of social media managers working round the clock to strategise content, track what's trending and ensure their clients continue to win and warm our hearts from their homes. We spoke to some of these showrunners to find out what goes on behind the scenes.

In this together

"The first couple of days of the lockdown were a whirlwind, but it smoothened out soon as the digital medium adapts quickly," says Anjali Goswami, vice president, client strategy and innovation, Everymedia Technologies Pvt. Ltd, which manages the social media presence of Madhuri Dixit Nene, Sanjay Dutt, Ajay Devgn and Kajol, among others. "Our approach to digital marketing in the last few weeks has become more meaningful. Apart from making sure our clients remain relatable, we realised that a lot of people look up to celebrities and influencers to tide over anxiety. We've been asking our clients to keep their digital space sensitive and positive. For example, Dutt encouraging people to stay fit while working out or Sidharth Malhotra cooking up prawns, strikes a chord with people," shares Goswami, adding that people feel better when they see stars go about their chores or take care of their family.

24x7 on call

Vijit Govind Malviya and Shimantini Gupta
Vijit Govind Malviya and Shimantini Gupta

Social media creator Vijit Govind Malviya, who handles television actors like Pooja Singh and Rudra Kaushish, among others, starts his day by chalking out what posts his clients can make in a day. "While my job has no fixed timings, work has increased ever since the lockdown started as now the whole world is always online. So, I'm constantly tracking what's happening on social media and my clients' engagement rate, and telling them what they should do. If something big is breaking, I encourage them to go live immediately to cash in on the moment," says Malviya. He shares that editing and creating each post takes around an hour at least and that on an average, he needs to make sure four posts go up daily. But in the absence of new releases, where does one look for content? "This is the best time for celebrities to show what they are doing in their personal lives. We ask our clients to take videos of them indulging in their hobbies, or follow up on trending challenges," he adds.

Money matters

Anjali Goswami
Anjali Goswami

Shimantini Gupta, who manages a popular Bollywood singer, says that apart from working on boosting his social media presence, she has been keeping an eye out for revenue sources, too. "Most of my client's income comes from concerts. That source has been cut off now. I'm getting calls from brands that want him to go live, but most do not offer remuneration. While doing this definitely gives him more visibility, I also have to be wise and go for options that offer remuneration." She adds that the lockdown has changed social media analytics, too. "Earlier, Friday evening was considered a good time to drop a new video. But now, it has come to a point where every day is a good day to do that," she reveals, adding that she has to constantly be on her toes to make the most of this time.

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First Published: 17 April, 2020 08:41 IST

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