interview Entertainment

‘I believe in being an entrepreneur of the self,’ says Ranveer Allahbadia

Ranveer Allahbadia  

 

Although many people know Ranveer Allahbadia aka BeerBiceps from his YouTube channel which has more than 2.55 million subscribers, the 28-year-old from Mumbai states ‘voice is the future’ in content creation, which explains the success of his podcast The Ranveer Show which is now exclusively available on Spotify.

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“The goal with YouTube-ing was always to start a podcast; in 2015, we thought India wasn’t ready for podcasts,” he recalls, during a video interview with The Hindu. “As content creators, we do get a lot of feedback via social media, so we pushed the podcast to 2019 when India was at that ‘sweet spot’ and wanted richer, deeper content. For example, during the lockdowns, people wanted more comedy and more mental health — as long as creators study their audiences. Now, people are into self-improvement activities such as lifting weights and doing yoga. They want something to play in the background because we are a content-soaked generation, and we cannot always consume video.”

A self-proclaimed extrovert, Ranveer says, “I believe in being an entrepreneur of the self; an entrepreneur is first built in the mind and you have to work your mind and body, and then think about careers, businesses and other external things.”

His YouTube channel viewers, numbering nearly 165,000,000, would know of Ranveer’s expressive hand gestures as he speaks. But this not being visible on a podcast, does Ranveer adjust his vocal delivery? “You have to retain who you are on the inside in order to retain your identity and purity of your content,” he remarks as he gesticulates, then adds, “See, I’m doing it again! (laughs) I’ve always been that guy with the gestures, even as a college student in maths classes, I would air-draw a triangle when explaining something.”

Big names, bigger stories

Ranveer ensures to feature not just a line of impressive names, but a diverse line-up such as tennis legend Andre Agassi, actor-politician Arnold Schwarzenegger, cricketer Glenn McGrath, Oyo Rooms CEO Ritesh Agarwal among others. After a point, does he ever get surprised by what these famous folks say? He responds, “Two people: Priyanka Chopra and AR Rahman. Priyanka is extremely friendly; that was my first ‘big’ episode. What makes a good podcast is when the guest and host are on the same frequency. Her energy of bringing her best was evident; I was deeply grateful. AR Rahman opened up a lot. I saw one journalist who had once mentioned he was the most difficult to interview, so I was nervous before the podcast. But within the first minute or two of my podcast, he spoke about his childhood, his insecurities at this stage of his career, and the passing away of his mother.”

Read More | How podcasts are taking off big time across India

But what happens when the energy does not work with a guest? Ranveer’s response is simple; he makes sure to have an informal chat with his guest before the recording to build a rapport. “We also select guests very carefully,” he adds, “and there are a few psychological behaviours such as noticing their eyes, how they react to certain topics. I used to have glasses, and I actually had a procedure done so that I don’t need to wear glasses or contact lenses when I interview my guests to have direct eye contact.”

 

With 118 episodes of The Ranveer Show out so far, there are a few bucket-list guests, namely Shah Rukh Khan, Virat Kohli and Angelina Jolie; the last because, “she’s my childhood crush!” But Ranveer points out that these three people are also known to not limit themselves to a single industry. “The show’s best podcasts have been with those who are entrepreneurial with themselves. You have to have more than one dimension,” he insists.

Ranveer also looks forward to a boom in regional language —Hindi, Tamil, Marathi, etcetera —space for podcasts and he hopes to feature more South Indian guests such as Baahubali director SS Rajamouli and people from Tamil and Malayalam cinema because, “they focus a lot on the process of learning and the technical aspect of any given craft — it’s very different from the rest of India and the world. Learning goes hand-in-hand with South Indian culture, and learning goes hand-in-hand with podcasts.”

Read More | Check out these podcasts that discuss cinema

This in mind, he hopes to delve into Indian men’s mental health which is not discussed enough due to toxic notions of masculinity. But he also shares, “I’m also deeply fascinated with the occult, like UFOs, Area 51 and so on!”

Responsibility and growth

But not all content necessarily lands right, some have been labelled by audiences as ‘misleading hustle content.’ He responds, “As a content creator on social media, you say things that you believe in, that you have practised and always have spoken directly or indirectly. In my case, it always has been about levelling up, growth and becoming a better version of who you are. Regardless of the format, some of your content is bound to be misinterpreted by some people, especially when it is in a short format like an Instagram Reels.”

He concludes, “I’m open to constructive feedback, that’s been the key to growth over the years. It would be unrealistic to expect everyone to be on the same page as me and I respect their difference of opinion. I have spoken about self-care and the importance of taking breaks in multiple videos or Stories in the past as well, by also sharing my personal experiences.”


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Printable version | Aug 3, 2021 6:39:24 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/interview-ranveer-allahbadia-beerbiceps-podcast-content-creation/article34821063.ece

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