Viral by Design: Decoding the Managed Approach Behind “I am a Marketing Genius"

In the labyrinth of influencer marketing, Orry, the self-proclaimed marketing genius, challenges norms, disrupts growth trajectories, and emerges as a potential face of luxury

by Ritika Raj
Published - December 07, 2023
8 minutes To Read
Viral by Design: Decoding the Managed Approach Behind “I am a Marketing Genius"

In the pulsating realm of virality, where fame is a coveted currency, one voice echoes with unwavering confidence: "I am a marketing genius”. This proclamation belongs to Orry a.k.a. Orhan Awatramani - a paparazzi and page 3 favourite ‘liver and hard worker’ (For the unversed, he lives for a living and works a lot - but upon himself). As the social media audience, we find ourselves caught in the intrigue, questioning the authenticity behind Orry's bold declarations. Is he truly a marketing genius, or is it a puzzle we're yet to decipher?

Orry's deliberate journey and strategic brand alliances beg the question: Is he redefining the standards for influencers, leaving an indelible mark on the industry? Is every move in Orry's enigmatic world intentional, each proclamation a brushstroke on the canvas of intentional stardom? To unravel the mysteries, industry experts and influencers share their perspectives. 

Viral by Design or Just Another Fad?

For most netizens, Orry was a fly on the wall until he gained popularity from the Jio World Plaza inauguration pictures where he posed with Bollywood celebs and the Ambanis. People were curious and wanted to know more about him - who is he? A Bollywood bestie, another ‘Nepo’ kid on the block, an industry insider or just famous for being rich? Amid this building curiosity and the mystery around him, his statements in the public domain turned into meme templates in no time. Intentional or not, it's worth taking a closer look at the process of personal branding.

“If someone can manage to get the entire nation to talk about him, he’s certainly doing something right”, says Nisha Singhania, CEO and Managing Partner, Infectious Advertising.

She adds, “He to my mind is a carefully constructed strategy on who he wants to appeal to. He ticks several boxes that make him a hit with the Gen Z. He is the latest fad right now and that’s why brands would love to jump on the Orry brand wagon. Brands that are fun and targeted to the Gen Z would flock to him.”

“Orry seems to have a plan or maybe just found a cool trick. Even if he's famous just for being famous, in a world where everyone wants to be an influencer, Orry's way is refreshing”, adds Abhishek Vyas, Founder, My Haul Store.

While some see Orry as a refreshing deviation, strategically building a persona before brand collaborations, others question the sustainability of his approach.  Is Orry's fame fleeting, akin to a phase, or does it mark a calculated strategy to dominate the influencer space?

When asked the same question, Shradha Agarwal, Co-founder and CEO, Grapes was reminded of the infamous Dhinchak Puja, known for her bizarre and often trolled style of singing, She adds, “It’s a phase. What he did strategically was get the paps to post a carousel of only him with all the stars and the who’s who of the industry. He then built this narrative of being a casual person who does not care about societal norms, which has got him traction because everyone likes bizarre. But can bizarre sustain itself in the long run?”

Others think that Orry’s is a case of strategically being at the right place at the right time. Instead of directly engaging with his audience initially, he has strategically focused on capturing the attention of the media and paparazzi.

“You can't think of anyone else who did it his way. He has gone the reverse way and has not collaborated with brands initially but instead built his persona by being present at the right place - be it an Ambani Party or a GenZ Bollywood Bash - at the right event and by hanging out with and being with the right people instead”, says Arushi Gupta, Business Head,

According to influencer Aatman Desai, “Orry's got this cool knack for self-promotion and also his connections and relationships with the industry have helped him to be set apart for sure. His brand collaborations are also very premium, helping him grow for sure.”

Changing The Game

Orry keeps things mysterious with his clever captions, funny phone cases, and random pictures of famous people. In a world where any aspiring influencer is only a step away from a viral reel or video, is Orry's sudden fame, whether on purpose or not, disrupting conventional influencer growth approaches?

Vyas rightly points out, “Unlike other influencers in India, he doesn't push brands too hard. Orry plays the fame game in his way. While other influencers talk about their carefully planned posts or relatable content, Orry just strolls along, creating memes and making people wonder if he's clever or just having fun.”

Influencer and Radio Jockey RJ Raghav echoes a similar sentiment and adds, “Orry has made his marketing strategy. Though it may seem silly to some users, it's fun to watch him. His rise (or fall) to fame is made special by the fact that he isn’t trying too hard. It’s the world chasing him.”

Jay Bhanushali, CEO, Acture Media contests, “Orry’s approach challenges traditional influencer growth strategies that often rely on organic and authentic content. However, I don’t believe it challenges influencer growth strategies as a whole. The mystery around his career and who he is - has been extremely addictive and isn’t that what influencer marketing is all about? Being sticky and garnering excitement?”

The New Poster Boy For Luxury in India?

On various occasions, Orry has been seen claiming that he doesn’t do brand collaborations or considers himself an influencer. In his own words, he is “Influential” but not an influencer. However, he has changed his tune of never doing brand collaborations to collaborating with CRED - known for its quirky and out-of-the-box marketing - for their Black Friday sale and also Adidas for the launch of Adidas Originals. Recently, he has been spotted on Netflix’s social media channels promoting the upcoming Zoya Akhtar film based on popular comics with the same name - The Archies.  A testament to Orry's evolving journey – ‘Never Say Never’!

Orry’s intentional approach to virality, strategic brand collaborations, and association with opulence raise questions about his potential influence in the realm of luxury, fashion and lifestyle space in India. Is Orry poised to become the face of luxury in India? 

According to Bhanushali, “Orry has given influencers a new approach of reaching the required target Audience through intermediaries & quite a unique way of Projecting himself too. Brands which want to be perceived as luxury or affordable luxury would ideally be the right fit for him.”

“By associating himself with high-end brands, Orry successfully created exclusivity. His ‘sponsored contents’ are not the conventional ones. He's carved his path, and while it might not be the right fit for every brand, any brand that pushes its boundaries and embraces uniqueness would be a perfect fit for him”, adds Vyas.

For Gupta, luxury, fashion and lifestyle are definitely up Orry’s alley, especially with the way he conducts his life and has a niche audience who is interested in the same. She adds, “While brands collaborate with a lot of influencers, they have one or more celebrities on board as the front leaders and Orry is going to replace some of these celebrities for certain brands in the near future.“

Influencers, take note!

Whether Orry is perceived as a marketing genius or a fad, he undeniably carves a distinctive niche. As influencers navigate the competitive digital world, Orry's claim to fame offers valuable lessons. Industry experts emphasize the importance of a unique personal branding approach, embracing mystery, and capitalizing on the right time, place, and people. Orry's journey serves as a beacon for influencers to understand their brand, stay true to themselves, and embrace what sets them apart in the digitized era.

However, Vyas adds, “Orry is simply being himself, and it seems like people appreciate that about him. However, it doesn't imply that every influencer should start imitating Orry. In a digitised modern world, being true to yourself is crucial. If the question is about the insights influencers and brands can gain from Orry, the marketing wizard, I'd say, whether it's Orry or someone else with a different personality or strategy, understand what your brand and you stand for. If the influencer aligns with your needs or values, embrace it; otherwise, it's okay to ignore”.