A management consultant turned financial influencer

If we sit down to decipher financial terms, we might have to stick around for a long time to interpret them. Financial education has seldom been a priority in Indian schools — so, naturally, while growing up, we all had to rely on the internet or elders. But here's the thing: it's an all-encompassing process to understand taxes, loans, investments, and the nitty-gritty details accompanying them. 

Enter financial influencers or creators who are simplifying this! Sharan Hegde is one such creator widely known for his interactive content, and he is on a mission to create financial content for the masses. We've had a conversation to delve into his journey.


Most of us identify Sharan with his username Finance with Sharan and interactive videos on personal finance that help thousands of people, especially millennials, debunk investing and finances. But if you ask Sharan, he introduces himself as a management consultant at PWC who helps grow businesses and handle operational costs. 

Sharan has about 1.5M Instagram followers and 25K+ YouTube subscribers. He also launched The One percent, a weekly newsletter where he'll send actionable tips, recommendations and high-quality strategies to help you manage your finances better.

Childhood & Formative Years

Sharan's curiosity isn't new — he was someone who used to ask many questions during childhood and often ran into trouble for being that curious. Sharan's father owned a restaurant in Mysore, and during summer vacations, Sharan would accompany his dad to the restaurant.

"I used to love collecting money, reading books, and inquiring about cash flow at the cash counter. That's how I got interested in money, but like most Indian parents, my parents' knowledge of investing was limited to a savings account, FD, and real estate. While that was the extent of our conversation, they never discouraged me from talking about money or savings. My parents were keener on saving than investing."

However, that school of thought keeps him grounded — he spends his income judiciously and tries to maximize his savings.

"When I spend money, and my mom remarks how we could have spent it on more important things, I understand the value of money."

Love for Finance

Sharan took an interest in finance during engineering as he was saving up significantly around that time.

"You know how all of us received money during festivals and birthdays? So did I from my grandmother, but I never spent it; instead, I saved that cash in a safe locker, and it grew to about a lakh towards the third year of engineering. I didn't want to spend it even then as I had no needs. So the next thing that occurred to me was how can I invest it further — I wanted to go beyond a savings account and FDs and lean towards the stock market."

Sharan admits how overwhelming it was, but YouTube videos by financial creators like CA Rachana Ranade and other brands introduced him to the world of mutual funds. In no time, he created a Zerodha account and started investing. 

"There's so much to learn within mutual funds itself. I've been reading and watching content to understand finance and slowly picked up books to learn more about this field. Then, I ventured into the world of taxation to understand taxes while earning a salary. I preferred to learn instead of working with a CA."

Whenever Sharan explained these concepts to others, they were astonished and barely comprehended personal finance. That's what motivated him to create finance content.

"I try to understand what I can't understand, but the skill of simplifying concepts is something I picked up only recently when I started creating content. I didn't want to transmit content in a complicated format just because I understood the financial terms. I wanted it to be easy, and my sister played a big role as she's not from a business or finance background."

Sharan's sister is somewhat a litmus test for his content and urges him to simplify his videos now and then. 

"My format is simple — how can I explain it to a 10 or 15-year-old? It comes with repeated practice."
A snippet from our interview where Sharan shares how he cracked his first job

Learning to Teaching: The Journey

During the pandemic, Sharan took to educating investment options to his friends; it was also the time when they entered the job market and had no idea what to do with their money. Plus, they weren't familiar with 80C or taxes and were too bored to research. 

"I'd individually explain these terms to each of my friends, but I was getting frustrated doing it repeatedly. I also understood there was a huge understanding gap for these concepts even beyond my friends' circle as we're not taught these things at school. That's what inspired me — besides, I had free time during the pandemic and consumed more content. Soon, I discovered Ali Abdaal, who achieved so many things and was the source of inspiration for me to get started."

Making The First Video

Sharan didn't jump straight into making content — naturally, he didn't know how to shoot or edit, but his first step was to write a script. When he visited his hometown, Mangalore, the first thing he did was go into his room and shoot the video. As an introvert, this wasn't effortless; it took him a while to get comfortable to face the camera. 

"It was my first YouTube video, and I recall the lighting being bad, but I learned to edit. It was a painful process and took two weeks to post it."

Sharan now takes about 45 minutes to shoot a reel, including costume changes and retakes. He spends about 4-5 hours every week, and the process now is largely automated where his team (his sister, chief social media strategist, and editor) takes over after the shooting.

A snippet from our interview where Sharan explains explains the video-making process

Content Creation

Sharan started with mutual funds because he was super familiar with them but realized topics like taxation and insurance would educate a larger group of people. 

"As these are bare minimum topics, I cover them regularly. Another way I pick content is based on what's out there; since I don't create new content, it's mostly about repackaging existing content in simpler formats."

Sharan consumes copious amounts of content, and whenever he thinks a particular topic might be helpful to more people, he picks it up. Despite being a millennial, he wasn't active on Instagram, but his sister coaxed him into posting videos on Instagram and promoting them by adding YouTube links. On realizing Instagram’s potential and reach, he began creating exclusive videos for Instagram.

A snippet from our interview where Sharan shares how he got his first 10K followers

Instagram users usually prefer light-hearted or entertaining content, so Sharan packed his videos with information, humor, and skits. You'll often find Bangalore lingo, and pop culture references like superheroes in his videos, making his content relevant. 

"Initially, I received negative comments but tried my best not to get affected. Slowly, I got better and realized you'll improve at anything you put your heart and soul into. My cosplay videos clicked, and I kept experimenting and refining my content every single day."

Once Sharan crossed 15K followers on Instagram, he invested in a ring light, some props, and a phone holder, but he shoots all his videos on an iPhone. His sister Shreya edits his videos. Also, he focuses on two essential things: does this content impact a large group of people, and can people benefit from it in the long run?

Metrics that Count

Sharan doesn't go beyond Instagram analytics to check his content's performance and the number of followers he's gaining or losing. Since the reel view count is crucial for his growth strategy, he focuses on it.

"My sister also learns from lifestyle and fashion influencers and experiments with our content. She tries to increase the story views because people usually prefer swiping up or downloading directly from the stories with financial content. Knowing how many clicks or downloads a brand has received from my story are vital for any influencer trying to monetize their content."


Sharan works with a brand manager who helps with brand deals and negotiations. He also discusses how significant their role is in landing deals as they're well-connected in their industry and better understand the pricing. While his brand collaborations include The Souled Store, Coinswitch Kuber, Slice, and GoDutch, his influencer collaborations include Tanya Appachu and Raj Shamani (it fetched a million views in under 15 hours). Sharan underlines leveraging both accounts' followers by creating relevant content for both.

Getting Out of the Cocoon

It happens to the best of us — we're getting all too comfortable lingering inside our cocoons and social media, and the pandemic has only fuelled this behavior. Indeed, digital content creators encounter it often, and Sharan acknowledges the struggle to get out of it. 

"I limit my social media consumption by setting up time reminders that notify me whenever I spend more time. Now that we're all stuck at home, we lack social avenues, so I ensure to eat all my meals with my family — I make it a point not to take my phone and have a conversation with them and live the other part of my life."

Creative Burnout

Initially, handling creative burnout was quite tricky, and Sharan took negative comments to heart.

A snippet from our interview where Sharan shares his thoughts on battling a burnout

Another crucial piece of advice is to overlook what others think and not let the nasty comments get to you because these things lead to burnout. There's more to life than social media content, and having multiple income streams or a stable job comes in handy when things go down south. 

The Way Forward

The future is clear — Sharan intends to aid people in making educated and wise financial decisions. And from the looks of it, he is already experimenting with content formats — whether it’s Twitter, Instagram or YouTube, to influence more folks. Recently he has also launched ‘1 Hour With A Billionaire’ to understand billionaires’ perspectives on investments and money at large. Nikhil Kamath was the first guest to feature on the podcast. We’re super enthusiastic to see how it’ll shape up!