Culture and career almost never intersect. I was fortunate enough to emphasize "almost."
Modi Toys is a startup focused on bringing Indian culture to American-Indian kids. We help people of all ages stay connected to their Indian roots through our modern toys and books, which are inspired by ancient Hindu culture. The team at is a small but mighty team consisting of five passionate workers at the time of writing.
I have been with Modi Toys for almost 2 years. I joined just after I graduated college because of how much I resonated with their message.
In working at a startup for so long, I have had the opportunity to work on and lead a wide variety of projects.
Below, you'll see the pieces I helped fill in this constantly moving puzzle.
Just as it is impossible to perfectly balance American and Indian culture for every kid growing up in the States, it's impossible to go through every single thing I worked on.
So let's start with the website:
(Spoiler: Everything comes back to the website.)
Naturally, as the company grew more successful, we knew we had to remake our website from a simple HTML checkout to a modern user experience.
This was one of my primary responsibilities and the process was not an easy one.
We shifted our website from being based in Wix to Shopify.
This involved going through each page on Wix and determining each asset that needed to be carried over, recreated or discarded. This was split between the entire team, with my focus being visual assets.
Once audited, I began to design the basic layouts of the new site.
Using Photoshop and Illustrator, I created rough mockups of how our UI could work and what the ideal user experience could look like. This process was led by the founders with my responsibility focusing on the layout of specific pages across the site.
When every design was approved, it was time to make the site real.
As Shopify is not the easiest platform to build a complicated website, we partnered with third-party vendors to code out the basics of everything we were looking for. Once built, I adjusted any pages manually to fit our aesthetic.
Before going live, we had to make sure everything worked as intended.
I led the initiative of manually testing every aspect of our website by implementing any usages or edge case I could think to then measure website performance. This process is still ongoing as the website cotninues to grow.
Once testing was at a point the team was happy with, we took the site live.
I then took charge of establishing the content that lived on it.
And so, so much more.
You can find easter eggs all over the site, but check out the slideshow below to see some of my favorite designs I've made:
Despite the website being consistently improved, it means nothing if customers never visit the site.
If a website is live but no one sees it, does it even exist?
Avoiding this scenario was my secondary responsibility.
Through extensive analysis of our audience and customers, we developed comprehensive flows to appropriately engage each and every customer.
People come to Modi Toys with different ideas, morals and objectives. Considering each individual allowed us to develop beautiful and effective email content.
Designing these emails was my responsibility after each analysis.
Whether it be for a new product launch, a timely sale or just to allow our founder to personally connect with customers, we needed each email to feel real and personal.
I cannot include the email themselves, but you can see a slideshow below of some of my favorite GIFs that I have made for a variety of campaigns.
The final step of this journey was our social media.
Before anyone will subscribe to your emails, let alone make a purchase from your website, they need to be aware of your brand. As a small business, social media is our heartbeat.
With the explosion of TikTok and video content, we had to get on board to maintain relevance. You can find our reels on our Instagram page, @moditoys.
In addition to our video content, I am the sole creator of our weekly Instagram series: Theology Thursday.
These posts have no advertisements associated with them, but are purely different stories from Hindu mythology or beliefs shared in a slideshow format. They are meant to educate people on a variety of topics in Indian culture, while still keeping constant brand awareness of Modi Toys as an informed and committed brand.
You can find some of my favorite slides I've designed in a slideshow below.
Even with an entire webpage dedicated to it, I still have left out projects I have led at Modi Toys, from creating our Amazon storefront from scratch to contacting temples, museums and colleges around the world to gauge interest in our brand.
Our company has always wanted to create a (Modi)fied version of what people already know and love. We hope to spark curiosity about their culture. The gift of knowledge may last a day, but the gift of wonder lasts forever.