Guest Articles

Influencer Marketing: Are We Asking The Right Questions?

By Takesh Singh. Actor, Writer, Director and Public Speaking & Camera Facing Coach.

Let’s be honest, everyone is talking about Influencers these days. Data suggests that over 70 percent of brands in India prefer working with Influencers as opposed to celebrities. This is mainly because influencers are considered to provide a larger amount of credibility in the eyes of the public. They are seen as Authentic, reliable and cost effective.

Production houses these days are also casting influencers in their OTT series and Ad agencies are always on the look out for the next big influencer to feature in their ad campaigns.

While these influencers have a large follower count on their social media pages, it is worth thinking about how effective it really is to feature an influencer in an advertising campaign.

As someone who runs a production house I have seen occassions where brands have been insistent on casting an influencer purely based on the sheer number of followers they had on their social media. Whether they were the right fit for the brand or not is something that is debatable.

Let’s for example consider a brand that manufacturers lollipops? The brand tells the production house to find an influencer to cast in the advertisement. The production house lines up a series of influencers from different domains / walks of life.


Craft Stories That Sell

This article is reprinted with permission from Siddhartha Banerjee’s LinkedIn page. Siddhartha is a Creative Head @ _VOIS (Vodafone Group) ★ IDEO certified Design Thinker ★ Int’l Speaker ★ NYU, HFI & IDF certified UI-UX Specialist

The Story of Story

If you are reading this article, then I’m guessing that you must have faced an audience before. On a stage. In a boardroom. Or just, you vs. you in front of a mirror. Did you hear a drum-roll constantly playing inside your head while the spotlight was on you? Or did you feel that butterfly that was desperately trying to get out? You are not alone. Honestly speaking, till a few years back, even after hundreds of presentations, I used to experience a state of numbness every time someone said, “The stage is yours”.

So what happened suddenly? What changed? No, I didn’t meet Gandalf or The Wizard of Oz. I met Jacques Prévert and the beggar. And this is how the story goes…

One day Jacques Prévert — a French poet, was walking down the street when he saw a blind homeless man begging. The sign read: “I am blind, please help.” However, his donation cup was empty. Mr. Prévert, instead of putting some money in the man’s cup, took the man’s sign and rewrote it.

A few days later, Mr. Prévert met the same beggar. This time, the homeless man’s cup was overflowing with money. So what had Mr. Prévert written on the man’s sign? “Spring is coming, but I won’t see it.”

Instead of just conveying an information i.e. I am blind and asking for an action i.e. please help, the sign now told a story.


5 Crucial Aspects of Brand Building in the Digital Age

Brand building today is nothing like it was just 10 years ago. With almost half of the world’s population online, companies have shifted their brand building efforts to the digital realm. As you might have already guessed, since everyone is online trying to make the name for themselves, the competition has became harsh.

This is why you have to stick to the basics, those crucial aspects of brand building in the digital age that promise success. If you are lost in the sea of information, this list may prove useful. Here are the five things you can do to successfully build a brand in the digital age.


How to Create Digital Diwali Cards Online

Diwali, is a combination of the words “deepa” which means “light”, and “avail” which means “row”. Dubbed as India’s biggest, brightest, and most important holiday, Indians celebrate this festival by lighting clay lamps outside their houses as a symbol of the inner light that shields them from spiritual darkness. Also known as Dipawali, this festival is very important to the Indians in the same way that Christmas is of great value to the Christians.

For more than a hundred years, Diwali has Sikhs, Jains, Buddhists, and Hindus joined in celebrating the Diwali festival regardless of the difference in faith practices. Indeed, it lives true to the term “festival of peace” as it is an opportunity for all of us to reunite with our friends and family.

Digital Diwali Cards

When we are living thousands of miles away from our families, we opt to purchase digital Diwali cards that we can send to our loved ones. Fortunately, the worldwide web boasts of thousands of digital Diwali cards with different designs that anyone can freely choose. Of course, one way to make things even more special is by adding a personal touch and making your own digital Diwali cards. This gives us more room to share your artistic talent to the world.

For entrepreneurs, planning on establishing their own brand, Diwali festival presents an excellent opportunity since the message of this special holiday is sharing your light to the world and affirming that indeed there is a force far greater than your own that’s protecting you from negative spiritual energies. Strategically speaking, Diwali is also the time when people are in a very giving mood that’s why it’s the perfect time to push production to boost sales.


How Startups Are Using Social Media (A Report on I00 Indian Startups)

“How to use social media to achieve business objectives?” is still once of the biggest questions marketers and digital marketers have to deal with on a daily basis. A 2015 EY Study showed that not being able to measure social media success and sustain engagement rate are biggest challenges for Indian brands.
XOR Labs decided to make sense and quantify the social media efforts in India by tracking social media profiles of 100 Indian startups for a period of 3 months—from July 1 to September 30.
Although many large businesses have adapted social media, Indian startups are the pioneers in deploying social media strategy. So instead of selecting old players, they chose Indian startups to be the subject of the study.
Although fundamentals are the same, how social media is managed for an ecommerce has to be different from sexual wellness space. So to make the report more meaningful, they categorized 100 startups into 13 segments—from horizontal ecommerce and food delivery to fashion and fintech.
Here are some insights from the report. Download the full report and more information from the Xor Labs website here.



Xor100 Social Media Report on 100 Startups by DesiCreative on Scribd

Alternatively view the document here.

11 Types of Facebook Posts for Small Business to Increase Business

Pritam Nagrale is a passionate blogger who writes on make money & business ideas on MoneyConnexion. Apart from blogging, he also provides internet marketing training at his Mumbai office.
This is no secret that small business owners can use Facebook to increase their business.
However they need to know how to create great posts that can attract new customers for their business.
In this article we try to give some 11 different types of Facebook posts that owners of a particular business can create and post it every week or day.
If you master these 11 types of Facebook posts then you can definitely expand your business and increase your profits.
Here are they.
1. Post Pictures Your Family, Employees and the Business
Start with the basics. Your business must have a personal touch or human touch to it. People can only relate to you when you have a human touch.
What do you mean by human touch?
Well you have to post pictures of your family and employees you work with.
Your pictures must be taken carefully. All your employees must be happy in the picture showing they are really having fun working there.
Keep updating with fresh pictures and even videos every week if not every day.


Design most often, is not considered a business. 

Tanya Khanna is the Director and Founder at Epistle Communications. Epistle is a communication consultancy providing bespoke, strategic consul ng services for architecture, design, planning and allied disciplines.

Someone has famously said that architecture is a great profession and a terrible business. In today’s globalised world, markets are in constant motion and new business can be generated from multiple means. Traditionally, most Indian designers and design practices steer away from communication activities that aid in generating business not recognizing that the success of a firm can simply be hinged on design communication. As designers, we are all inherently trained to let our work speak for itself; however, stuck in the everyday rut and ensuring the deliverance of good design, often we do not tap into our business strengths and lead them to a path of success.


How we pushed up ‘Lead Conversion Rate’ at Langoor by 35%

By Avinash MB, Digital Marketing Leader| Ex-entrepreneur| Product Marketer| Growth Hacker | Content Marketer at Langoor Digital.

One of the challenges we faced in the beginning of the year 2016 was a big drop in quantity and quality of inbound leads which were generated at Langoor. This is a seasonal behaviour where business leads dry out during Dec-Jan due to the holiday season setting in. We decided to run some interesting experiments to see if we can improve our conversion rates for leads during this lean phase of the year.
Quantity of people visiting
Having already pinned down the ‘Digital Agency’ keyword on Google Local as well as organic listing, we knew that the quantity of people visiting our website is a function of market demand. It had dipped due to seasonality so we decided to improve the number of leads by focusing on improving conversions. The aim was to get the same number of leads with lesser number of visitors to the Langoor website.


How Branding and Marketing of Colleges is Helping More and More Students to Be Aware

Today’s generation is very much brand conscious as they brain storm even over the brand of their clothes to the brand of their toothbrush. So, one can imagine the height a student will go before choosing the institute to pursue his/her education. And that is why there is so much need of branding and marketing of colleges, as it helps in understanding and comparing different colleges and helps them to know about various colleges in the first place.
Let’s take the example of MBA. It is the trendiest professional course in India. Everyone dreams of getting an MBA degree from the top brand names like Harvard, Stanford, The Wharton, Yale Xavier’s, IIMA and many others, because it can make them a millionaire or a billionaire. MBA is a degree which student of every stream or subject wants to have. But what will make a student to know about such colleges which can help them in getting that degree? Everybody knows about IIMs, but what about other colleges for MBA? Well, that is the part where branding and marketing comes.
By branding and marketing colleges do not aim to sell their college’s name but rather aims at letting the students know about their establishments where any student can come and get his/her dream fulfilled of having an MBA degree. Through branding colleges want to tell the students about the kind of experience they will get from their institute.
There are thousands of colleges in India, half of which are still unknown to students. All they need is branding and marketing of their college to make students aware of their existence and they can help number of students as well as themselves. Through this they can help all those students who fail to get into top ranking colleges and are forced to drop out for a year or more because they just don’t know about other existing colleges which can offer them the same degree one desires to have.

Here is a list of some of the best MBA colleges in India, which have used the same technique of branding and marketing to make students aware of their capabilities to enlighten a student’s future:

Indian Institute of Management : Ahmedabad
Indian Institute of Management : Bangalore
Indian Institute of Management : Kolkata
Indian School of Business : Hyderabad
Indian Institute of Management : Lucknow
Xavier Labour Relations Institute : Jamshedpur
Indian School of Business : Mohali
Management Development Institute : Gurgaon
Indian Institute of Foreign Trade : New Delhi
Christ University : Bangalore

The HotStart : Agency Profile

TheHotStart is a crowdfunding platform that aims to help raise funds for the most creative and innovative projects in India. TheHotStart has been conceptualised to help creators and funders get one step closer to realizing their dream projects. While helping raise funds is one thing, TheHotStart also acts as a preliminary validation point for a concept. Another benefit is the word-of-mouth marketing that it attracts. Barely a few months since its inception, TheHotStart has already helped fund some great one-of-a-kind projects like Kalyaanam – a 10 minute short film that got selected in the London Indian Film Festival, gives you a glimpse into the life of a would-be-bride, Rhythm of Love – the first crowdfunded jukebox musical in India and Taan Bekro, a documentary based on the struggles of Rajasthan’s ‘Sapera’ tribe.

What made you start TheHotStart
It almost happened by chance. In June 2012, our cofounder was with a couple of his friends at a pub in Manhattan, New York. The friends were discussing how it was difficult for Indian projects to succeed on US-based platform. The big challenge was the geographic divide between the funders and the location where the project was going to be executed. And, therefore, potential contributors struggled to see value in projects. That really was the origin. There appeared to be a genuine market need to connect people with people who had the funds to power their ideas. Over the next six months, the idea of creating a high quality crowdfunding ecosystem for creative and innovative projects in India started to take shape.