Challenges for Start-ups

Two Days and Three M’s of Digital Reboot

Two Days and Three M’s of Digital Reboot

By on Aug 12, 2015 in Challenges for Start-ups, Digital Branding, Entrepreneurship, Start-up Brands | 0 comments

It is really been long that I took time out to share updates on my entrepreneurial journey, experiences or hurdles, struggles or happiness, profits and losses! Unlike everyone else entrepreneurs cannot take it easy, they most of the times work for more hours, procrastinate due to tiredness and sometimes are found juggling between the dream run and reality. It is all so interesting, needs patience and needs dare to. It is been 5+ years of entrepreneurship for me and I kick-started this year with an agenda. Learning something and enhancing my skill-set, personality, friends or network was a part of it. Half the year gone by and I was yet to get a boost to do something exciting. I had been thinking of learning music, a new language etc. But being a business woman that I am, I chose a Digital Marketing Workshop to start with. It will help me brush up my digital skills and in turn will help my business, my work and it was for just 2 days of a weekend. So I enrolled for a digital reboot. And because I was excited about it, I had mailed my doubts & queries on module subjects to our trainer a day before the workshop! How mean, nope; how resourceful! Another good thing about this whole thing, I was looking forward to meet people, make connections, to reach out more entrepreneurs for ideas & inspiration and to make friends. I planned to reach on time and with the excitement and good habits I managed to reach early on day one. It was good as I got to connect with some of the participants and was happy to realize that many of them were entrepreneurs. And each one was exciting for the digital reboot with masterclass. The fact brought in some more positive energy. Continuing, here is brief about the session and my version of Three M’s. Hope you enjoy reading. ———————————————— The Opening Act was simple ‘Om Chanting’ and I quite liked the logic for doing this, it helps us gain ourselves together and let go the several kinds of energies we all carried from the pre-occupied hassled world. And guess what, because of this simple trick –...

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10 Things every Entrepreneur should Stick to.

10 Things every Entrepreneur should Stick to.

By on Dec 12, 2014 in 30TH FEB, Challenges for Start-ups, Entrepreneurship | 0 comments

1. Stick to your Idea “Take up one idea. Make that one idea your life – think of it, dream of it, live on that idea. Let the brain, muscles, nerves, every part of your body, be full of that idea, and just leave every other idea alone. This is the way to success. – Swami Vivekanand” Entrepreneurship is fast becoming a fad. A new day college goer wants to pick it up as dare thing to do. The online world is showing an influx, the social media is promoting entrepreneurship and suddenly everyone wants to go online to launch a new business. It isn’t that simple. So it is better to find the best idea based on expertise, team, skill-sets and budgets. The idea should be strong & worthy enough to sustain. So that it does not becomes another start-up attempt. 2. Stick to your Plan “A goal without a plan is just a wish.” When you launch a business, it is better to plan. Plan for a year or 2 and keep a steady expansion plan for 5th year in mind.  One should always have a plan B at the same time. It is not necessary that everything goes by the plan but the business plan shall remain solid and we need to stick to it. Many of my clients change plans quickly which is fatal for the business health and team motivation levels. All entrepreneurs must make it a habit to stick to the business plan, however the ways to accomplish that plan shall be kept flexible. 3. Stick to Hard Work In the initial days of business, hard work will pay more than the smart work.  Though the world today vouch for Smart Work but an entrepreneur must be ready to work hard; harder if required. And sticking to working hard is good for health of business. The initial hard work pays with smart returns. So stick to it. 4. Stick to Your Passion Passion is most important requisite for Entrepreneurship.  There are many hurdles in following the dream, getting new business, from executing projects to managing teams but an entrepreneur must stick to their passion. If they love doing the work, if they find peace...

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Startup Branding– Get the basics right!

Startup Branding– Get the basics right!

By on Nov 26, 2014 in 30TH FEB, Brand Strategy, Challenges for Start-ups, Entrepreneurship, Start-up Brands | 0 comments

A small step of careful branding can bring about a bigger change for your business entity. It can make you a household name and a widely respected company. But first you need to understand that your brand represents ‘what you are selling’. If you hit that chord right, there’s no looking back. Here’s a list of the basics of startup branding that would surely help you perceive your brand in a whole new direction. Do you know your customer? The foremost thing you need to understand well when launching a brand campaign is ‘who are you selling’ your product or your service i.e. your TG. Right from introducing your brand logo to creating a website, the key is to serve according to your customer’s interest. It’s not just to create a visual identity; it’s to create a niche within your business category. A branding should be reinforced such when a consumer thinks of your category, they should immediately recall your company. There’s no doubt that the companies with an established local or national brand come to mind but don’t forget they were at the starting-edge some point of time. Clearly, that is what makes it significant to have a clear identity, straight message which reaches the customers and delivers your brand message in such a way – that they remember it. Not always the targeted audience works best for your product, it’s important to have a sound market knowledge. Conduct External Brand Audits, speak to real customers, and step into the shoes of the people you are trying to influence. For the same reason Nestle India Limited (NIL) tried to position the Noodles in the platform of convenience targeting the working women. But it found that the sales are not picking up despite heavy promotion. Research then showed that Kids were the largest consumers of the brand. Realizing this, NIL shifted its focus from working women to children and their mothers and repositioned the brand towards the kids using sales promotions and smart advertising. NIL aggressively promoted Maggi with taglines such as “Mummy BhookLagi”, “Bas 2 Minute”. This was the initial positioning after the recent incidence in Nov 2015 maggi repositioned itself to a wider age group which included...

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High 5! 30TH FEB’s 5th anniversary!

High 5! 30TH FEB’s 5th anniversary!

By on Nov 15, 2014 in 30TH FEB, Challenges for Start-ups, Entrepreneurship, Start-up Brands | 4 comments

“I couldn’t wait for success, so I went ahead without it.”:) – Jonathan Winters Monday, November 17, 2014 marks the 5 years to 30TH FEB, a dream rush it has been. Like a marriage I wasn’t too sure that the love will be so deep – even if you have bad days, all you want is to stick together. 5 years is not too long but it tells that we have a reason to celebrate survival, progress, honesty & optimism. We could stay and we will be able to stay much longer now! Like any business here too we experience difficulties, I was often wondering & trying to differentiate between free-lancing, solopreneur, a big agency etc. But we reached to a point that we aren’t a start-up anymore. We learn to value our time & effort and we got a direction. And during this course of action, we had moments when we wondered what winning must be like! We embraced changes, took challenges, failed at times, shined at times and we learnt some lessons too, here are those we would gladly be sharing with you, Definition of Success: “Being successful starts with knowing what YOUR definition of success is. It’s not always defined by dollars.” The definition of success matters a lot in a start-up story. It could be money, projects, people, consistency etc for different people & different teams. Our Definition of success was simple – we had to sustain and that would happen only if we have work in hand, the idea was not to sit idle, joblessness was a challenge and answer to what will make this effort successful. After 2 years of launch, the definition changed for we realized some of the projects were not paying as per the effort. We needed to grow in terms of Quality of projects, the profits we are making, and the work we are delivering. That changed our definition of success. We now work for Brand Satisfaction – in overall terms. Success as it seems is quite simple to people who applause you and judge you at times. You know the complications & challenges, the complexities & hurdles; you know it is been really- really hard. But if you...

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Being Ordinary and Entrepreneurship!

Being Ordinary and Entrepreneurship!

By on May 31, 2014 in 30TH FEB, Challenges for Start-ups, Entrepreneurship, Start-up Brands | 0 comments

Being human – the name came into my mind and I pondered OMG! Being human is such a big thing, is now a big brand, has got big celebrities to vouch for. But what really makes it big is the intent of charity behind it. The very cause of its popularity is – humanity or the very big celeb Salman Khan as its promoter. I wondered. People argue on religion, money, status, peer pressure, family pressures – have you ever thought what for? Each one of us is trying to chase the extraordinary status among their group, friends, and society. Some do it by churning money others by preaching religion, some by demeaning the rest on their decisions and others by proving superiority through shallow comparisons. And doing all these, the only loss is of humanity. We start each other as case studies, winners & looser, average and above average, classy and boring etc because we think of ourselves as Supreme and others ordinary! Is there anything wrong in being ordinary – I ask. Ordinance of ordinary is Craziness. Is it? Being Ordinary is a pleasure. Imagine how simple things could be if we choose their ordinary versions. Like choosing a simple phone over smartphones – we will save time, conversations will be better & intriguing. Imagine an ordinary life without texting, ah! I so wish we could go back to those times. Ordinary breaks could be family picnics then those foreign holidays, that doesn’t mean I don’t want them; I do. Ordinary people plan get away holidays to have shorter breaks to rejuvenate and to have quality time with friends & family. I remember the small get together, pot parties, weekend picnics – they were all awesome and still make great memories of my ordinary childhood which made me a person to dream difficult things and to keep faith & work hard towards it. I plan to be ordinary. I do not feel like following the smart path, plan an easy life, secure future etc; I believe I will be fine for I am doing my bit with all honesty. Being entrepreneur is different because it has the got the basic intent of being ordinary and being sincere...

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External Brand Audits – The Checklist to improvise!

External Brand Audits – The Checklist to improvise!

By on Mar 26, 2014 in 30TH FEB, Brand Strategy, Challenges for Start-ups, Communication Strategy, Digital Branding, Start-up Brands | 0 comments

‘Charity begins at home’. Going by the quote we recommended the Internal Audits as the first step toward a Brand assessment program. That is also to make sure that the team and the stakeholders perceive and understand the brand in one tone for they are undoubtedly the first & foremost ambassadors of the brand. Once we make sure that internally we are strong and firm as an entity, the next step is to observe the brand as an outsider, as a customer, as a prospect. It is significant to check the visibility of the brand as a separate entity with no strings attached. This could be done internally through Dipstick, Perception Analysis and other qualitative methods. At the same time if there are huge communication and branding gaps observed at the niche level, the external audits can also be extended to the target segment for which the very idea of brand in conceived at the management level. (This is Post 3 in the Brand audit series). The basic idea behind an external audit is to assess the marketing effectiveness. It can be done by assessing the strength, weakness, opportunities and threats of each & every marketing effort. You can also identify the return on branding investments- the areas of improvement which can lead up-to brand re-positioning, brand extension etc. Largely, an external audit shall include a thorough check of the following Brand Elements: Corporate Identity – logos and other brand elements Logo is the first impression of your brand. Make sure it is remarkable and it stands out. It is not necessary to have a story behind the logo but it should have some relevance to your brand.  Many a times people go by their creative preferences and leave the logic behind, sometimes the choice of color, fonts go wrong with the logo design, such cases get great help through external audits. An audit on identity should help you understand – What do the consumers perceive about your brand? What changes do they think you should incorporate? Is there anything which suggests a change in brand elements? Is there something which leads to an identity crisis? Collateral-brochures, print materials, trade show displays, etc. There are 2 ways to check...

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