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Rising Stars: Meet Basil Mournian

Today we’d like to introduce you to Basil Mournian. 

Alright, so thank you so much for sharing your story and insight with our readers. To kick things off, can you tell us a bit about how you got started?
I created the LetsBrunchSD Instagram page in 2018 as a “test” account to experiment with the business side of IG after some marketing friends explained the system to me. I’m not gonna lie; I also wanted to see how many people were checking out my pics! I’m no pro photographer, but I love taking pictures, and I also love exploring new restaurants and eating their delicious food. 

So, unlike my main account, where my posts are more random, I decided to do what the most successful influencers do — I focused on one subject. Brunch! Living in North Park, I couldn’t help but notice people enjoying their mid-morning to early afternoon meals on the weekend, laughing, savoring the day before returning to work. LetsBrunchSD was born. 

It worked. A few posts later, I had over 200 followers. Today, I just passed 800. Some of my best posts were taken with a lowly iPhone SE and include eggs benny, waffles, and even more pedestrian breakfast items like cereal. I’m hoping to go out to more breakfasts in the future instead of being basic at home. Ironically, I get hungry earlier than most people, so I guess brunch is probably not my area of expertise — I’m more of a breakfast or lunch guy — but I do enjoy it when the timing is right. There are truly many great options here in San Diego and LA. I’m also into reposting for others to let the world know what I think they might enjoy. 

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not, what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
Since it’s more of a hobby, I’m not as stressed as someone trying to get a business off the ground or hungry for income. The main struggle has been finding content as the cost of living has skyrocketed in San Diego. More of my income goes toward living expenses, so there is less for entertainment. Also, Instagram has changed their algorithms so getting likes and engagement is more difficult today than, say, 4 years ago. 

Appreciate you sharing that. What else should we know about what you do?
By day, I’m a customer service rep on the phones — that job pays the bills. It’s reasonably fun talking to people on the phone and relating to them, solving problems. 

But I have a creative side, too. I enjoy photography and writing. Sort of journalistic, I guess — I like to share pictures of sunsets, local real estate, and of course, food/entertainment businesses. I review some of them on Yelp and comment on local events on Twitter. I’ve gotten many compliments on how I use perspective in my photos. I also include myself on short videos, whether I’m in the shot or narrating. I think my voice is unique, and I’m a bit of a character myself, so I can hopefully entertain someone and make their day a little more enjoyable. I’m more down-to-earth, not wildly popular. Just the guy taking the pictures and telling the story. 

Are there any apps, books, podcasts, blogs, or other resources you think our readers should check out?
I like to watch psychology/self-improvement videos on YouTube. I have some social anxiety and motivation issues, so I’m trying to see what I can do to make my life more enjoyable and less of a struggle. No particular ones I follow though. 

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