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By Andrew Thompson
If you want to use Instagram stories like a professional, you have to watch your analytics. It is an observation that brands positively respond to those web pages that have consistently uploaded stories. Since Instagram stories are up for 24 hours, you can upload exciting content daily without worrying about overloading your followers.
Do not be intimidated by keeping up with the polished aesthetic reputation of Instagram. You can upload your phone videos and imagery in stories to attract the audience. It is a fact that even the billion-dollar companies upload from their phones and not hire a videographer.
The main idea is to give it a personal touch to strengthen the bonds with the followers. Many mobile uploads fetch likes and followers rapidly. However, you must add hashtags to your stories to make it easily discoverable to the broad audience. It will help if there is more number of hashtags as it will increase popularity. As such, you can add up to ten hashtags on stories to make it stand out in the pool of content.
Brilliant ideas to use stories on Instagram to generate business
People instinctually do not accept pushing advertisements as such Instagram stories can attract eyeballs effortlessly. Instagram stories can help you expand your base of clients. It would help if you designed your accounts to make it appear addictive and force the user to stick to it longer. You can even use this interface Insta4likes.com to get more likes.
Users inherently become curious to know what’s coming up next, so they love to click instead of exiting. As such, you can easily use stories on Instagram to lock your users and make them visit things they did not wish to initially. It is an excellent way to upgrade your brand profile.
As you know, you can instantly upload content on Instagram stories. It is one of the best ways to share reports related to your company. You can announce new product launches; introduce crew members, and also general happenings of your workplace. You can brilliantly use it as an opportunity to put up behind the scenes footage off your firm.
This footage might not be so important that they can find a place on your company’s official web page, but you can surely put up on stories. It will help if you put up personal insights on developments to convey your company’s human aspect.
It is a perfect way to encourage brand awareness and bring about the engagement of the customers. Putting up videos about the packaging of your latest product or even about playing a prank on your colleague could be interesting for the users to watch.
Make collaboration with popular influencers of this platform
You can smartly collaborate with relevant influencers. Try to get into partnership with those influences that would benefit and enrich your followers. You can even convert your customer into a partner, thereby making it more interesting for your other customers. Collaborating on a fun trip with an influencer can help you get a lot of attention on this interface. It would not only benefit you but also give the influencer lot of exposure, thereby producing multiple fun content.
You can even take up a question and answer interview and encourage your followers to ask questions. It would make the entire post interactive, whereby calling for action from the followers. However, before you collaborate with and influence it, evaluate how you could enrich your business through this collaboration.
Present your story highlights in an appropriate manner
The introduction of the story highlights on Instagram has been a game-changer. As an entrepreneur, you should know how to utilize story highlights to inform people. Followers would know what to expect from your web page. You might as well provide information about what you do and how you do. Give information about your products or services through these highlights.
As such, you can use highlights in a fun manner to convert your Instagram web page into a business brochure. You have to even come up with Instagram covers that are mesmerizing. Your page should be full of content to keep your users engaged with the main aim of keeping them hooked to your web page and converting them into loyal customers.
Using polls to engage users
Instead of opting for boring questionnaires for your customers, you can use polls to encourage follower interaction. Polls are an excellent way to undertake market research, understand feedback from the customer, and get to know your followers in a fun and exciting manner. There are endless ways you can use polls to deliver possible outcomes. You can even come up with relevant and creative business campaigns specific to your product to target a particular kind of demographic audience.
It would help if you encouraged client interaction on your stories to popularize your brand further. The main aim is to have a real conversation with your followers, thereby fetching brand loyalty.
(Disclaimer: The article is sponsored, and hence promotes some commercial links.)
Tenali Ramakrishna, or Tenali Raman as he is more popularly known is Birbal's equivalent in South India. A court jester and a scholar exuding great wisdom, Tenali Raman was known as one of the greatest courtiers in King Krishnadevaraya's court.
The Vijayanagar Empire ruled a large part of South India between 1336 and 1646. In the 16th century, the kingdom rose to prominence under the eminent leadership of King Krishnadevaraya. His continuous victories against his enemies ensured a successful and peaceful reign for his subjects. As a patron of art and literature, many crafts and cultural assets thrived in the empire.
Krishnadevaraya's beloved courtier, Tenali Raman is the finest example of the splendour of the Vijayanagar empire. He was born in Tenali, a town in Andhra Pradesh. He lived here until he lost his father, after which his mother brought him to Vijayanagar. He was discovered for his excellent wit and wisdom, and appointed in the court. He was one of the king's ashtadiggajas (collective name for the eight poets and scholars).
A statue of Tenali Ramakrishna near a Municipal Office in Andhra Pradesh Image source: wikimedia commons
Tenali Raman as a scholar, published great texts of wisdom, which have now become artefacts of the Kingdom of Vijayanagara. But his fame does not lie in these achievements. He is known for the mischievous jester that mythical folklore portrays him to be. Through stories, many writers have used jokes to impart wisdom and morals to many generations of people. The stories of Tenali Raman are almost legendary in the Southern peninsula.
Textbooks have been written with his moral stories in mind, and these days, many self-help book are also incorporating his wisdom. His most popular stories are, 'Mother Tongue', 'Cursed Face', 'Saluting the Donkeys' and many more. Through these stories, Tenali Raman, in some way, brought about social justice. Perhaps this is why he is most beloved by many people even today.
Keywords: Tenali Raman, Vijayanagar empire, Krishnadevaraya, Jester, Wisdom
It must be noted that different religions and societies in Southeast Asia have alternative narratives of Ramayana, one of the greatest epic.
Here are some of the versions of Ramayana!
Dasaratha Jakarta: The Buddhist Version
Interestingly, this version of Ramayana does not mention Ravana at all and in fact, there’s no mention of Sita’s abduction, too. In this version, Dasaratha is the king of Benaras and not Ayodhya. Also, Rama and Sita leaves kingdom and go to the Himalayas and not forests. Then, after twelve years, Rama and Sita return back to Benaras and get married.
Paumachariya: The Jaina Version
In this version, Lakshamana is the killer of Ravana and not Rama. Here, Rama is an ardent follower of Jainism, and so he cannot be the killer of Ravana. Also, this version states an army of warrior and not monkeys, as stated in Valmiki’s Ramayana. Another interesting feature of this version is that Ramayana is not shown as a villain, rather a magnanimous king and follower of Jainism.
Gond Ramayani: The Gond Version
Gond is an adivasi clan belonging from Madhya Pradesh in India. Interestingly, in this version, the story begins from where Valmiki’s Ramayana ended; when Sita is rescued from captivity. Also, Bhima, one of the Pandavas from the epic of Mahabharata, is mentioned in this version. Unlike Valmiki’s Ramayana, Rama is not the protagonist in this version.
Ramakien: The Thai Version
This is considered as Thailand's national epic, and is still taught in some schools in the country. In this version, Ravana is shown as a learned scholar and a noble king in this version. Also, Ravana’s pursuit for Sita is depicted as true love. There are a lot of similarities between this version of Ramayana and Valmiki’s version, but this version lays a lot of emphasis on Hanuman.
When a baby is born in an Indian household-they invite hijra to shower the newborn with their blessings for their blessings confer fertility, prosperity, and long life on the child. But when that child grows up we teach them to avert their eyes when a group of hijras passes by, we pass on the behaviour of treating hijras as lesser humans to our children. Whenever a child raises a question related to gender identity or sexuality they are shushed down. We're taught to believe that anything "deviant" and outside of traditional cis-heteronormativity is something to be ashamed of. This mentality raises anxious, scared queer adults who're ashamed of their own identity, and adults who bully people for "queer behaviour".
Hijras are a community of people who include eunuchs, intersex, and transgender people. They worship the Hindu goddess of chastity and fertility, Bahuchara Mata. Most hijras, but not all, choose to undergo a castration ceremony known as "nirvana" in which they remove their male genitalia as an offering to their goddess. The whole community is vibrant with hundreds of people with hundreds of ways of expression, the true identity of a hijra is complex and unique to each individual. In India, hijras prefer to refer to themselves as Kinner/Kinnar as it means the mythological beings who excel at singing and dancing.
Hijras worship the Hindu goddess of chastity and fertility, Bahuchara Mata.homegrown.co.in
The hijra community works systematically, the community separates itself from the outside world and teaches lessons to the young ones in secret. Each community has a guru and the other hijras are their disciples or chela. The "hijra ways of life" are taught to the disciples in a secluded environment where they leave their families and live with other hijras in the community. More often than not hijras are thought of as nothing different from transgender and often referred to as transgender; however, scientifically these two terms denote a different class of people. Hijras are a part of the whole community of people with various identities and of spiritual and cultural values meanwhile, transgender merely refers to those people whose gender identity differs from the sex assigned to them at birth, they are a part of the community and do not represent the whole community.
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Historically and culturally the community has existed in the Indian subcontinent as long as the civilization has existed. There are mentions of hijra in The Mahabharata, a holy book of Hindus. Shikhandi who was neither male nor female is a mythological legend. In another version of Mahabharata Arjuna, one of the Pandavas was cursed to be the third gender by Urvashi, when he refused to be sexually involved with her. In a story by Padma Purana, it is seen that Arjuna transforms into a woman to take part in Krishna's mystical dance which only women can take part in. The Hijra figures are prominent in Indian Mughal History as well, referred to as Khwaja Siras and known for their loyalty to the ruler, they worked as the sexless watchdogs of the Mughal harems. They held important positions in court and various facets of administration during Mughal-era India, from the 16th to 19th century. The Hijra community is a testament to the sexual diversity that is integral yet often forgotten in Indian culture.
If the whole hijra community was looked upon with enamour and respect in our history, what happened that when we come across the community we look at them with contempt and are filled with a mixture of negative, fear, laughter, and odd emotions. It's owing to the fact that under British Raj, the Criminal tribes Act 1871 hijras were criminalized and the law was made to eradicate the whole community. However, these acts were abolished by the Indian government after independence, and by 2014, India, Nepal, and Bangladesh all had officially recognized third gender people as citizens deserving of equal rights where the third gender means individuals categorizing themselves as neither male nor female. Even though the progress is slow but in 2015 Madhu Kinnar became the first hijra mayor in India was elected in the city of Raigarh.
ALSO READ: India's first Residential Transgender
Although the hijra community was revered by society and is invited to births and weddings for religious and spiritual ceremonies, they still become victims of abuse and discrimination. Violence and hate crimes against the community have become common. They are deprived of education, job opportunities, seating in restaurants, etc. leading them to live in poor conditions barely surviving. They often have to resort to begging and prostitution to earn a daily living. The government has tried to address this issue by introducing bills for the protection of the hijra community, with prison terms and other punishments for those offending them, but there is little to no less effect on the social stigma against the community.
In India, the hijra community comes under the umbrella term LGBTQ+ and we notice that they lack voice and representation when it comes to LGBTQ+ rights. We need to understand that when we fight for LGBTQ+ rights we fight for the whole community, we fight for hijras who have been victims of violence, hate crimes, and disrespect from none other than the people of our society. And although hijras are a part of the LGBTQ+ community as a whole, they have an independent subculture of their own. It is worth every effort to know about them, to study about them, to befriend them, and to smile at them for they are every bit of human as we are and they have nothing but blessings in their heart.