One week down in Bangalore, and it’s already been much more eventful than I could have imagined.
When applying to my internship position at Arbor Brewing Company India, I originally took on what was supposed to be a “graphic design” position for 2 months. Well, I can’t quite say that I have much expertise in that area, so I proposed a new position to my employer in marketing, an area I’ve been working in for 3 years. We worked out some responsibilities I would take up, and the internship formed on its own.
By the way, I have nothing but positive things to say about my employer at ABC, Gaurav. As a film major turned entrepreneur U of M alum who started up operations in India in a practically nonexistent market, he knew he wanted to kickstart the craft brew scene in Bangalore after spending many nights at ABC Ann Arbor as a student about a decade ago. Much respect.
As for my responsibilities as a marketing intern, I’m looking at quite a broad array of tasks as my first week comes to a close. I’m the main point of contact for local graphic designers and production companies while ABC amps up its marketing game – I’ve already met with the 2D art team in Bangalore and planned an overhaul of the wall art in the space, as well as a local film production company that’s shooting a promo video for ABC on Monday. I’ll be coming in early with them and helping out on set just to make sure the brand message comes across accurately. I’m also creating content – I’ve brought along my mirorless camera and stabilizer to produce quality content to post to the social media pages I’m managing (I’ve learned in my few days here that social media is really what sets your craft beer brand apart from others in the area – you’ve gotta be able to connect with your customers!) I’m also currently setting up a trivia night here at Arbor with a local MC (or “toastmaster”), and while it may be a small event, a successful first try will only open doors to larger events I could plan and advertise to the public in the future. Other than that, I’m helping to develop the branding for some new beers Arbor is continuously putting out: the name, the design, the general feel you get when you think of one particular brew. The position is a good fit – I’m more of a creative type anyways.
My part of town, the Victoria Layout, is close to the high-octane commercial area MG Road and the endless restaurants and pubs that emanate from it, as well as the famous Indiranagar area – again, restaurants and pubs galore. Bangalore is a beer town, and I’ve certainly spent a good number of my first evenings here checking out the scene. I’ve made friends very quickly, and when I get home from work it always seems like there’s something to do.
Most recently, a friend of mine took me to an Indian wedding. One word: colorful. Two words, actually: blindingly colorful. I mean this in the most beautiful sense of the phrase – from the wall of flowers behind the couple donned in emerald green contrasting the saturated sea of sarees and kurtas to the aroma of the endless array of south Indian cuisine lining the walls and the fireworks show to end the night, it was a welcome sensory overload.
Other than that, my roommate is entering the Miss India pageant and her cousin is leading one of the most famous rock bands from the area. Quite a talented bunch. I’ll be filming for my roommate as she creates short videos for her entrance into the final round of the competition – just paying her back for showing me around the city my first night here! The band is an entertaining bunch as well – I came home one day only to find them taking turns queuing classic metal videos on youtube and hitting that air guitar. Of course I had to join until 3 am. And after I told them about my interest in film, they invited me along to their shoots – that’s an opportunity I simply cannot pass up.
Touring the local brewpubs is another activity I’ve come to enjoy. The brewmaster at ABC has taken me around to see the other breweries, try their beer, and meet the other local brewmasters. Most of these guys start as homebrewers and take up offers to work locally and mass produce. I had no idea of the subtleties of the craft, but it becomes very apparent when you hear brewers talk about the flavors and aromas coming out in their beers. I think I just developed interest in a new hobby.
Yeah, quite an eventful 7 days.