Saturday, January 24, 2015

Life Pre and Post "Marriage"

Wohooo!!

It seems like forever since i last blogged about absolutely anything. I haven't been too active on any social media platforms for a while but I'm back now and I plan to get back to how it was.

Life has changed a lot over the last few months. Sometimes I just wonder how it all happened too soon. It been a crazy year with its ups and downs, mostly UPS and that's what brings a smile to my face.

So i got engaged in March 2014 and married to the most amazing man on this earth on 5th December 2014, moved to Connecticut, USA on 25th December 2014 (that was fast).

Well so right now I'm sitting in my apartment, sipping on a cup of masala chai, chilling and enjoying the best and most laziest days of my life :D

All i do these days is, eat, watch tv, workout, hang out with my hubby and then go to sleep. It has been an amazing month since i moved here. I feel blessed to have a partner who enjoys almost all the things i love to do and that adds more excitement to the relationship :)

I am planning on starting a photo blog or something to share the amazing pictures and beauty around here hopefully.. I am in love with this place.. but yes I do miss Mumbai ... friends and family out there.. there is no place like MUMBAI !!!

I'm going to write more often now... so keep checking this space :)

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

My visit to the Four Fountains Spa - Mumbai



Alright, I couldn't stop myself from writing a post about the Four Fountains Spa as a few of my friends requested me for the same & well the spa experience was worth writing about.

Last 2-3 months have been very hectic for me, My mom had her eye therapies, I got engaged & I haven’t got time for myself as I had guests visiting on and off.  Therefore, I realized it was high time for self pampering! In order to relax a little and to de-stress myself from the daily routine work I have been doing at home I decided to visit a Spa. 

I had been experiencing terrible back pain for a while and with the amount of work I was doing at home it aggravated even more. So this time I decided to drop the relaxing massage and go for something which would help alleviate my pain & relax my muscles a little bit.

I had an amazing experience at the Four Fountains Spa earlier when I went there for Aromatherapy and was completely de-stressed and rejuvenated when I walked out of the spa. The experience was worth the money. Therefore, I knew which Spa I wanted to go this time.

I headed to the Four Fountains Spa and told them about my body aches. I was recommended a Swedish Massage, Which is known to reduce body aches and pains & It also increases oxygen supply to the muscles while reducing lactic acid formation. I was asked if i had any specific areas where i need the masseur to concentrate while giving the massage & i mentioned mine before heading for the Swedish Massage.

I have to say, It was an outstanding experience and I am absolutely amazed at how effective the massage was, especially on the targeted areas which I requested. During the massage I felt like I was in heaven, the ambiance and the way the masseur did her work is recommendable.  I walked out with another appointment for a future date & i guess what, i got a head massage free with it !!!

I would definitely recommend my friends to try The Four Fountains Spa to experience what they call bliss!

P.S. I didn't see any fountains :D lemme know if you did!!


Friday, August 2, 2013

Problems faced by us Indians



We Indians face a number of difficulties in our daily life, Some of which have been existing for a long time. I thought i might list a few problems which most of us face & would agree with.


1.       Unemployment
An MBA degree has become a basic requirement, surprised? Don’t be, Many of my friends even after having done their MBA’s are unemployed.  One major reason for the same is that most of the organizations do not want to hire a FRESHER. Did the employers forget they were in the same shoes once upon a time? I fail to understand why Employers choose to ignore young talented freshers,  why not hire freshers?  Offer better perks and incentives to motivate and bring out the best in them, all they need is just a Chance to prove they can do it!


2.       Underpaid
This is another major issue faced by a lot of people out there who are currently employed.  A few organizations promise a hike after a particular period of time or after the employee is confirmed, however very few stand by that promise. Some Organizations overlook the needs of the employees and continue to maintain a bureaucratic hierarchy due to which it becomes extremely difficult for an employee to express difficulties to the person concerned. Every organization should have a proper system in place which focuses on every employee’s contribution and rewards them accordingly. An appraisal system is a must & in order to retain employees promises done during the interview should be fulfilled.  


3.       Security issues
We boast about having security systems in place but even after several bomb blasts & terror attacks. The numbers of rapes and murders have been on a rise. Every day we hear about a girl either being molested or raped publicly. An ex boyfriend throws acid or hot oil on his ex girlfriend because she chose to move on.  Where are the officials when all this happens? Even after so many incidents happening daily rarely do I find a police official at a railway station & if at all one is found, the checking or duties done by them is zilch. Police officials should make sure everything is in place. Government should make sure duties by officials are being carried out properly, patrolling at wee hours of the night should be strictly made mandatory not just during festivals but also otherwise.



4.       Rigid Work Timings
With the rise in the number of rapes happening in the country today, Parents have become apprehensive towards sending their daughters out in the night or to work till late in the office. Some organizations fail to co-operate and understand this. They don't care if you are working till late, all they want is their work done. Organizations should have flexible work timings in place for women.  If there is a need to stay in the office till late facilities such as drop should be provided or work from home option should be made available.


5.       Admissions in Educational Institutions
Corruption exists everywhere, more so with Educational Institutions.  Some Institutions out there ask for lakhs of rupees for admissions. Most of the parents end up paying the money thinking it is an investment for their child but what about the ones who cannot?  The ones who cannot pay have nowhere to go.  This should be stopped, Investigations should be done and Institutions should be penalised and warned against such practices, so they avoid doing the same in the future.



6.       Racism
No matter how much we say about being a democratic country with liberal views, the fact is most of us are racists & discriminate on basis of caste and color. The fact that products like “Fair and Lovely” exist itself shows how color conscious we are.  Even a groom’s mother talks about wanting a “fair” girl, the other qualities are secondary for them.  A lot still say that a man can work and a woman can’t, she is supposed to stay back home & look after the kids. This attitude should be changed & in my opinion only men can change this. If a man disapproves this kind of behaviour and starts treating his partner equally irrespective of her color, things will definitely change.

6.     Poor Infrastructure 
We pay taxes, we file returns, but the condition of the country - specially the infrastructure remains the same or rather continues to aggravate even further.  Why does the government promise and fail to deliver? So many scams and yet there is no control over corruption. Every monsoon Mumbai faces water logging problems, it becomes extremely difficult to travel during the monsoons as roads turn into swimming pools due to ill drainage system.  Importance should be given to the infrastructure for convenience of the citizens and also to attract tourists instead of scaring them away with a bad experience.

 6.     Society
Our parents are half the times worried about the society, "what will the society think?" , "the society will not accept this", "what will people say?". Half of our problems will be solved if we didn't pay heed to what the society will say, think or do. The society will always speak whether you do good or bad, if we pay attention we are never going to achieve what we want and will always under-perform. We don't live to please the society, so why waste energy over what they will think?

Have you ever felt the need to do something but gave up just because you thought it would not be accepted by the society? What are the problems you face or have faced as an Indian? Do share in!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

On Being a Girl !

Coming from an Indian background where girls are married off at quite an early age it is evident that I have my own share of thoughts or views on various issues.

Today I would majorly concentrate on the most Important and prominent topic “How it feels to be a girl”

I would be dishonest if I said I haven’t had a satisfactory life or haven’t enjoyed it to the fullest. Thanks to my Dad who had his firm belief in me & bestowed upon me with all that I wanted or ever asked for.

However there are times in my life when I wish I had more liberty, to discover the world, move out & craft a whole new identity for myself.

Growing up, I came faced numerous hurdles, sometimes when I made key decisions of my life. People tried to bring be down, tried to demoralize me but I didn’t give up. I had chosen a path & I made sure I walk the path to achieve the goals I envisioned.  

When I graduated from college and was preparing for my MBA entrance exams, I had a relative come over to my house & he spoke to my dad about getting me and my sister married. My sister who is just a year older – was busy doing her Post Graduation at that very time. He said things like “Why are you letting your daughter’s pursue higher education, It is becoming extremely difficult to find grooms for girls these days, with education their expectations have gone high!”

For a moment after that man walked out from my house, he had influenced my dad with whatever he said – My dad did speak about marriage after that. However, after some time he forgot about it.

Education has been of utmost importance for everyone in my family. My dad constantly supported us when it came to education & motivated us to set high goals which we would never falter to achieve. Now as I grow up and have stepped the corporate ladder, there are certain boundaries or restrictions I have to keep in mind & follow.

When I speak about going to another city for a meeting my dad is very hesitant & disapproves for the same. When I talk about going to another country he once more disapproves. It is not because he doesn’t want me to grow and be successful; it is because he is overly protective because “I AM A GIRL”

The only thing which really upsets me is - My brother can go abroad for further studies, He can carve a career out for himself abroad, He is allowed to go on trips to other cities or for that matter other countries & while he can do all of the above mentioned things “I CAN’T” do the same. Not because I don’t have the competence but because the society will not like it & will scoff at us. 

Why does the society talk about marriage as soon as we finish our education & plan to work? Why can a boy think about his career but a girl can’t? Why such Double Standards?

I have least interest in the society; I don’t even care what they think about me. All I want to do is to live my LIFE my way. I’m sure there are many girls like me who feel the same, & who face similar issues daily. Every so often I feel like a bird whose wings have been cut off & can’t fly. 

When will the society learn to mind their own business & treat us “girls” equally? For how long will we have to curb our desires & do things according to the society? Only if dad knew & didn’t bother about what the society thinks but how it feels “On Being a Girl”….. 

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

April Fools Day !

Given the fact that, there have been “n” number of contests happening on Twitter & Facebook daily.  People who are contest freaks were all set to win a lot of freebies on 1st April as well.

There are people on Twitter who keep tweeting like a machine & it seems like their only aim in life is to play & win contests. Sometimes I wonder if they have a “LIFE” of their own or they  “LIVE” only to play such contests!

So on April Fools Day as a lot of people were trying to keep themselves safe & not get fooled by their friends and family, little did they know that a Brand which has been making them win big will fool them.
One such Brand which really caught my eye & whose prank I found interesting was “Godrej Aer”. 

These people have definitely been planning the campaign for a while now as they really made the prank look so genuine, not only on their social media platforms but also on their website.

So ! What was the Prank about?

Godrej Aer promised to bring out the World's  #firsteverfragranceapp.They made use of  their website, Facebook & Twitter for their campaign. 

On Twitter :  

They asked people to tweet with the hashtag #firsteverfragranceapp & tag as many friends possible. People tweeted with enthusiasm as to which fragrance they would like from their app & the winners were given prizes like a Sony Cybershot Camera and an IPad Mini.




On the Website:

When you go their website www.godrejaer.com It feels like a robot is welcoming you & asking you to wait & do as he says. The voice of the lady asks you to come closer to the screen in order to be able to smell the fragrance when the green light goes on.

After a couple of seconds you get a notification whether you can smell the fragrance with two options “Yes”  or “No” – Once you click on “YES” it takes you to a page which says “Come on, You can’t be serious, We can’t make fragrance come out of your screen”.

The ones who clicked “NO” were given another  option “Come closer to the screen, Inhale deeply when the green light comes on. Press the spacebar when you’re ready.”

Then again when someone presses a space bar it says “Come on, You can’t be serious, We can’t make fragrance come out of your screen”.








On Facebook:

They also developed an application on Facebook which said “sweet rose fragrance app” – The world’s #firsteverfragranceapp. Download it for free & smell fresh roses on your device”.

When people clicked on Download they got a customized message with their name “Dear _________  aerpril’s fool! “ Along with a message that Godrej Aer can’t make devices fragrant but with their products you could make your car & room fragrant!




Overall I think it was a very well ideated & executed campaign, Something different & creative I have come across in a while.

The best part was, they made it look so real by working on their website, using Facebook + Twitter that made many people actually fall for the Prank! 

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

People behind those Facebook Pages & Twitter Handles!



Yesterday I came across this Question posted on Social Samosa’s Facebook Page : What do you think should be the ideal first salary for a social media executive?

Being a Social Media Executive, I couldn’t stop myself from commenting on the status! It obviously attracted people from the Digital Field & some Agency Owners. The salary quoted by people ranged from about 5.5k to 30k. It is but obvious that some of the people who quoted salaries in the range of 5.5k – 10k were agency owners!

I have always loved having my own social media space – my own Social identity  – this over a period of time has helped me in many ways!  I have made lot of friends, business relations & one of the reason I am a part of this Digital world today is due to my activity on various social media platforms!

When I often meet new people & tell them about my Profile, some raise their eyebrows but many others seem pretty excited to know what exactly Social Media Marketing is all about.

Many people think Social Media Marketing is all about copying and pasting content from one place to various social media platforms. However, the reality is much different! 

A Social Media Executive’s main job is to create content! That content can’t be picked up from somewhere else. It has to be original. Their minds are constantly working & thinking what’s next!  The content generated by them has to be unique & catchy! Even though you can’t calculate ROI – there are other targets they have to achieve in terms of engagement/ interactions / likes, etc! 

SME’s have to constantly monitor the Brand’s various Social Media Platforms..Come up with creative social campaign ideas, generate content, make sure the content initiates conversations & interactions! Not only that, they are a link between the Client & the Consumers much like a Client Servicing person! That is, A Dual Role!! Oh wait a minute did I forget to mention – he/she should also have basic Photoshop skills – so the work becomes more easier for them than when the creative team is busy with other work?? A SME has to constantly be in touch with the client - understand the client’s requirements & then execute the same in a style which appeals to the audience!

There are times when people are enjoying Holi, Celebrating Christmas, Eid, Diwali & SME’s are busy running contests & campaigns on Social Media - NO they don’t get brownie points for that! No matter where in the world they go, they have to constantly keep checking / working through phone or their laptops, that means, even if you have taken an off – you don’t get a complete OFF day – you still have to make sure you have done your work because you can’t trust someone else with the Brand you handle!

Social Media Executives are very important! Why? Because they are your Brand’s lifeline!! One wrong move & the Brand’s Image is killed!  

 Still think that they don’t deserve being paid a good salary? Then go DIE!

Friday, March 1, 2013

How important is it for a Brand to have an Online Presence?





With the aggressive competition & advanced technology in today’s world it has become very important for Brands to create their online presence.  This isn’t just applicable for the biggies but also for the small well established brands. 

When a prospect meets you & you exchange Business Cards both scan through the Business Cards. The contents of most of the Business Cards these days are - Organization Name, Name of the Person, Designation, Contact no, E-mail Address & a link to their website. People who are highly active on Social Media also share their Twitter handles & links to various profiles.

How does this help? Well, when a prospect meets you he/she wants to see your past work, products, etc. Having a website helps your Brand in many ways. People can check your website anytime as it is available to everyone via Internet. Your website tells about your work – it is like an alter ego – people can go “WOW” or just drop the plan to do Business with you. If you have a website make sure you give it the best look – spend some money & get it made professionally – The quality of your website tells who you are. It doesn’t have to be a Flash website, a basic website which is neatly done can suffice. It will also help in Search Engine Optimization. 

A website is something which can be viewed from anywhere in the world. People abroad can view your website & get information about your Brand. You can not only get clients from your city but your country or another country. Therefore I think it is very important for a Brand to have an Online Presence – a Website is a must have.

Now comes the latter!

Does your Brand really need a Social Media Presence? 

Well Yes & No Both! Depends from Brand to Brand. A Brand which caters directly to the consumers should definitely have a Social Media presence, be it a store down the street or a home-made cup cake’s business.  A lot of people have realised this & are coming ahead & creating a Social Media Presence. However, Some people still think that having a Social Media Presence is not Important for their Brand. They still believe in the principle “Word of Mouth”, But does WOM really help? If your Brand is on Facebook it can grab more eyeballs, When you post something on your page & if someone likes it / shares it – it shows up on their wall, this is then seen by the people in that person’s list & so on.  People may not exactly know who you are but your 1 post can make them want to go to your page & check who you are, what you do, etc.

Social Media is best for the reputation of your Brand. Remember there are many people trying to kill your brand, direct interaction with consumers, catering to their problems, complaints etc can help your brand a lot & also manage its reputation.  

It is not really important for a company dealing into B2B products to have a Social Media Presence but yes having a website will sure help it grow its business.  For such companies LinkedIn is the best bet as it will not only help in Networking but also help in genuine inquiries from serious buyers.
To sum it up, It is important for every brand to have an online presence for higher brand recall.

The world is going the Digital way, Are you ?