September 28, 2016

Argh! How do I get my content to go viral?

Content marketing has been a great and effective way to acquire customers. One question that all entrepreneurs ask is how to create viral content. In this Ink Talk, Sattvik Mishra, Scoop Whoop shares his lessons and the thinking that drives stories at ScoopWhoop.




Reality - Not all content goes viral - "while we had some wins, most of them were duds" he recounts. Why do some content go viral?

While traditional media hasn't changed - newspapers, websites, apps are all just versions of what editors want readers to read, content consumption has changed. e.g. While newspapers decide what news to put up on what pages, social media feeds are deciding for consumers what to consume.

News is very subjective - for a millennial a Game of Thrones episode would be a huge thing, while there are people who don't follow it. To be relevant to your targeted audience - you need to listen to know what they are talking about and what they'd like to talk about.

The most important sauce to content - EMOTION - happiness, anger, surprise, fear just anything! - without creating that emotional connect, content doesn't go viral.

e.g. He talks about how ScoopWhoop covered Rupi Kaurs's response to Instagram for removing her photo:


The article questioned notions of patriarchy which evoked anger, disgust - and was read more than 9 Million times.

Only X can write for X - a 20 yr old can't write for 40 yr old nor the other way - which is why diversity in a team is very important.

Make news relatable - Here he share how ScoopWhoop made youngsters read about the budget:


He shares "you can make something as boring as the budget and make it as interesting as the budget if you make it more relatable."

This doesn't mean you could just use the above lessons and continue to make viral content - you need to change and evolve with your audience.


September 13, 2016

How Indian Entrepreneurs can build for the Mass Indian User: Ankur Singla, Helpchat


In a ET article, Ankur Singla, CEO of Helpchat shares where Indian Entrepreneurs are failing at building for Indian masses:
"My hypothesis is that most Indian entrepreneurs and product managers build products for people like themselves - elite and westernized Indians who think and speak in English. This is also why almost all Internet companies fight it out for the first 10-20 million internet users.
However, the honest truth of the Indian internet market is that to build a large Internet business, you need find a way to build for the 200 million common Indians."

How can Indian Entrepreneurs build for Indian masses ?


1. Go out, talk and relate to the COMMON MAN.
"One weekend, I took all product managers in our team to Church Street in Bengaluru and we spent four hours talking to security guards, waitresses and small business owners. You need to see their phones, their home screens and understand their behaviour. All of them mooch off the Starbucks internet; a guard uses Uber to pick up his family from railway station, a waitress wants news about her hometown and a business owner needs more content around jobs."
2.  Stop Westernizing the product/service and Embrace the Indianess
"think about Maslow's hierarchy of mobile needs. Think about basic aspects of the phone - battery, data usage, phone space, balance on their phone." 
He shares about Chinese company UC Browser - "most readers of ET would think that Chrome is a great mobile browser until they see how UC Browser has built a download manager, optimised for Facebook messages and reduced data usage (all features super important for the common Indian)."
Click here to read more.


Venture Intelligence is India's longest serving provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India.

August 26, 2016

Making Indian Entrepreneurship More Desi

Writing in Founding Fuel, Baba Prasad, CEO of Vivekin Group who teaches entrepreneurship in B-Schools, bemoans the fact that a lot of the students would like to emulate the founders of companies like Facebook and Amazon and do not even bring up names like Narayana Murthy of Infosys or Azim Premji of Wipro, leave alone like Laxmanrao Kirloskar or Jamsetji Tata. "So, if business models for Indian entrepreneurs are fashioned in the West, and business heroes are not Indian, the question comes up: What is Indian about the Indian entrepreneur?," he asks.

According to the article, the crux of an Indian Entrepreneur is:
1. Balancing profit-making with the burdens it is imposing on society and the benefits it can deliver to society
2. The entrepreneur is solving problems, that are not uniquely Indian, but the scale is Indian. 
Contrasting the Western/Capitalist model and a not-too-practical Gandhian/Socialist model, the author provides Aravind Eye Hospital as a balanced template for the new Indian model:
Aravind Eye Hospital, established in 1976 in Tamil Nadu by the visionary Dr G. Venkataswamy (popularly called Dr V), is an excellent example of such blending. Over the last 40 years, it has performed millions of screening tests and hundreds of thousands of cataract surgeries. The unique business model draws on a for-fee model to fund its free services. The problem of eye care is not uniquely Indian, but the scale of the problem is definitely Indian. And Aravind Eye Hospital’s business model makes the solution for eye care a typically Indian blend of the Promethean and Gandhian models.

A characteristically Indian model would be one that alongside profit-making considers the burdens it is imposing on society and the benefits it can deliver to society. It is a tough ask, and it is individually negotiated with each entrepreneur finding his or her own balance through self-scrutiny is the one who will be truly free and capable of innovation.
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Click Here to learn about Venture Intelligence products that help entrepreneurs Reach Out to Investors, Research Competition, Learn from Experienced Entrepreneurs and Interact with Peers. 

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August 11, 2016

Lessons from Yahoo & Jabong Exits: Suvir Sujan of Nexus Ventures

Extracts from Suvir's recent blog post on how entrepreneurs & investors should determine timing of a strategic sale.

1. People - There is fatigue or lack of passion at the founder or leadership level.  Or  it is hard to attract or retain key talent in the company. Or there is a strong disagreement amongst the various stakeholders on the way forward.

2. Approach - The approach to solving the problem is either not working or not scaling. Revenues cannot scale without scaling costs proportionately

3. Market - The market is either not large enough, or the competitive dynamics in the market puts pressure on current business model

Venture Intelligence is India's longest serving provider of data and analysis on Private Company Financials, Transactions (private equity, venture capital and M&A) & their Valuations in India.

May 06, 2016

8 Rules for building Great Products

In a Medium blog, Mitchel Harper shares his thoughts on what makes great products.

1. BFBC - Build For your Best Customers

They bring you most revenue and are willing to pay for upgrades and newer products. Give a higher weight age for their feedback.

2. Solve Tier I Problems

Tier I - One of top 3 problems of potential customers. If  you are solving a Tier I problem you will have the Customers' attention and budget spend. The rest are Vitamins - "nice to have fixed" problems.

3. Build 'simple to understand' products

Design is your most important feature. Every time the user experience is great, a startup's revenue grow like weed.

4. Make a cupcake

Most startups try to build the wedding cake (the big final product) on their first iteration instead of starting small with a cupcake, then turning it into a cake (based on customer feedback) and then finally into a wedding cake (again, based on customer feedback).

4. Prioritize Customer Feedback and make Themed releases

Instead of a sprinkle of small improvements, you will be making one big improvement which will be felt by more customers.

5. Outsource non-core activities

Startups have a better shot at winning when they are extremely focused on a single mission — and anything that gets in the way should be delegated. Necessary business processes that doesn’t differentiate you from your competition should be outsourced to an agency or third party provider. 

6. Manage costs & runway

When you build anything new, it’s tempting to just think about the initial cost to build, source or manufacture the product. What trips most founders up, though, is the ongoing cost to sustain that product once it’s live. Great products takes years of iteration based on customer feedback to generate that kind of revenue, which of course needs to be funded from somewhere — either profits or investors.

7. Be ruthless in tracking metrics

Running a startup is like flying a plane. If you can’t read the instruments, even for a few minutes, the plane probably won’t be flying for much longer.

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on private company transactions, valuations and financials in India. 

Click Here to learn about Venture Intelligence products that help entrepreneurs reach out to Investors, Research Competition, Learn from Experienced Entrepreneurs and Interact with Peers. Includes the Free Deal Digest Weekly Newsletter: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

May 05, 2016

What is Great Design? - Illustrated in 3 Doodles

In a Medium Blog, Julie Zhou, VP - Product Design at Facebook shares (pun intended) a few doodles on what is Great Design. She calls it as the congruence of high "Positive Utility" and lotsa "Customer/User Love"



The Ambition Hierarchy of Designers


Catch the 3rd Doodle here

We've been getting our hands dirty at trying to get well designed infographics on Venture Capital & Private Equity. You can catch the stories here

Venture Intelligence is the leading provider of data and analysis on private company transactions, valuations and financials in India. 

Click Here to learn about Venture Intelligence products that help entrepreneurs Reach Out to Investors, Research Competition, Learn from Experienced Entrepreneurs and Interact with Peers. Includes the Free Deal Digest Weekly Newsletter: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.

April 05, 2016

Stop Whining & Start Executing

Gary Vaynerchuk's advise to Whiner-preneurs: "Bullshit entrepreneurs cry about the way they want it to be instead of reacting to the way it actually is." & "Nobody gives a f*ck about your feelings and you need to stop crying and adjust"

Click Here for the video

Arun Natarajan is the Founder & CEO of Venture Intelligence, the leading provider of data and analysis on private company transactions, valuations and financials in India. Click Here to learn about Venture Intelligence products that help entrepreneurs Reach Out to Investors, Research Competition, Learn from Experienced Entrepreneurs and Interact with Peers. Includes the Free Deal Digest Weekly Newsletter: India's First & Most Exhaustive Transactions Newsletter.