Instamojo conducted its first mojoMeets last week in Hyderabad, to an audience of over 60 people. With MojoMeets, we aim to build a community platform that encourages small businesses and startups to come forward, together and embrace innovation. Instamojo empowers small businesses to go online and with this meet, we went one step further; we brought them under one roof. The theme for this years’ MojoMeets was “Scaling your startup in today’s world”.
Invitations went out to Hyderabad’s budding and established startup universe, and garnered a large audience of entrepreneurs, business owners and upcoming startups The event saw an intriguing medley of business advice, success tales and brainstorming sessions among the panel and the audience.
— Instamojo (@instamojo) February 14, 2019
The panel of speakers:
- Sampad Swain, Co-Founder & CEO at Instamojo
- Jasminder Singh Gulati, CEO of NowFloats
- Sreekar Sannapareddy , Co-Founder, Gradvine
- Pratik, Co-Founder, The School of Accelerated Learning
- Aditya Gupta, Co-Founder, iGenero Web Solutions
- Prashant, Founder, Unekha
- Minal, Founder, Aish
Scaling your startup: Starting out
Sampad Swain, CEO of Instamojo, spearheaded MojoMeets and kickstarted the event with a talk on the importance of scaling your startups. Sampad urged budding entrepreneurs to reflect on the cardinal rules of running your own startup.
The 3 rules:
- If you have an idea or product, find your secret sauce. What keeps you going? As a subject to rule 1, never share your company ideas or the secret sauce with anyone else.
- When you shift from the Product to the business stage, ask yourself, what is your killer use case? What is one thing your customers use more than anyone else’s?
- For your business to scale heights, you need to keep your marginal cost of acquisition zero. Keep acquiring customers with minimal spending on marketing.
“ Copy cats never kill you – The day you become irrelevant to the customers is when you are dead” – Swain
Scaling your startup: The Chinese Bamboo Shoot Concept
The session stepped up the energy quotient with Jasminder Singh Gulati, CEO of NowFloats. Using the occasion of Valentine’s day as an ice breaker, he joked about how he was willing to invest in all the 60+ people who were there and not celebrating.
Jasminder began his take on the importance of scaling startups in today’s world with the ‘Chinese Bamboo Concept’. Just like the Chinese bamboo, it’s the roots that grow deep and firm into the soil before the bark. Once the base is firm, the shoot grows fast and high. It is important to apply this concept to your startup too. Focus on setting the base, and watch your company grow with minimal effort. No business is built overnight.
“ Stick to your inner voice, listen to no one else. The better you understand it, the less you doubt yourself.” – Jasminder
Scaling your startup: Customers are everything.
Jasminder emphasised on scaling startups with a lot of grit and a steady pace. If you are slow, you cannot scale your business. Addressing the entrepreneurs, he spoke about meeting customers halfway and understanding them on a deep level.
A group panel discussion took place post Jasminder’s riveting talk. The panel discussion, moderated by Sampad Swain, consisted of 5 speakers, Minal, Aditya, Sreekar, Prashant and Pratik.
Sreekar Sannapareddy, Co-Founder, Gradvine, a peer to peer mentorship service spoke about how the importance of quality control keeps him up at night. As an entrepreneur, his primary rule is to keep his existing customers happy, more than the ones he wants to acquire.
Aditya, Co-Founder, iGenero Web Solutions, had his team go one step ahead and send samosas to his supporters in America.
“ Be true to your clients. It is the Indian way to do business.” – Aditya
Scaling your startup: Have fun.
Minal rose from receptionist to HR to Designer for her independent mother-daughter clothing wear. Her brand Aish has clients abroad that message her at 1:00 AM. She says:
“ If you have a business that you love, like mine, your To-Do list starts at 1:00 AM. You need to have fun doing what you do, else no amount of money will make you happy. “
Scaling your startup: Take your business online
Pratik, co-founder of The School of Accelerated Learning understands the importance of taking his business online, even though his business plan would ideally take place offline.
— Instamojo (@instamojo) February 14, 2019
“ For the sake of informing and educating potential customers, it is not enough to keep an offline presence. You get your new set of customers through a strong online presence” – Pratik
Prashant, the creative entrepreneur, started his company Unekha, to promote other creative artists on different platforms. Dedicating his time and hardworking to a startup that did not meet his levels, Prashant realised the need for a digital online platform that gave everyone worthy a chance to showcase what they had. His company, a talent promotion platform, carries a strong online presence and features amazing work by creative individuals.
mojoMeets Bonus: Can you create a part-time Startup?
A question asked by Sampad Swain during the event, this question got a collective disagreeing head shake from the panel. However, Minal stated that a part-time startup can be a possibility if you have another job to keep finances steady.
There is no right answer for the world of startups. Everything is a possibility.
“ Don’t fight competition – Fight the competitor” – Sampad Swain
The energy-packed MojoMeets evening ended on a high note with a networking session and dinner.
Instamojo partnered with IndianStartups Network for mojoMeets and organised the event in the Redbricks office in Hyderabad.
If you are an entrepreneur, mojoMeets is for you. If you aren’t one, attend the event. You might just change your mind. If you are interested to be a part of the next mojoMeets, reach out to our team here.