In 2009, when the digital was still not the in-thing, it was challenging to find good developers and designers. iGenero, a development, design and a digital marketing company , saw the opportunity and started with a strong belief in the power of good design and technology. They have witnessed a 50 pc YoY growth. In conversation with Supportbiz, Aditya Gupta, co-founder, iGenero, explains the journey of the company, which is one of the first few companies in India offering social/digital media services.
SB: What is your business plan for 2016?
Aditya: 2016 is going to be a year of transformation for us. We’ve been around for a few years and I can confidently say that we are doing decently well. We’ve always wanted to roll out a couple of products and I think one such idea might finally see the light this year. For the services side of the business, we plan to hire more people at Mumbai office and also set up our first office abroad, starting with the US.
SB: How challenging is the business for iGenero?
Aditya: Knowing how rapidly the industry is changing, it is definitely a challenge to keep up with the pace. If you don’t learn/unlearn fast enough, you can phase out pretty quickly. Also, employee retention and hiring has become a task. The funded companies of the world are throwing money out there to get the right talent. And we, being a bootstrapped firm, don’t have the luxury to do that. Also, picking up newer technologies & design standards is fun.
SB: What is your thought about Digital India? What is iGenero doing to empower Digital Transformation?
Aditya: Digital India movement is doing a whole lot of good for the entire country. People are far more accessible & connected than they ever were. Individuals, companies, government organizations, everyone is trying to do their bit in whatever way possible. As for iGenero, we make sure people around us are aware of every new thing happening out there. The helper at the office now uses a smartphone, all the apps & is always connected to our network. We often come across a lot of people who don’t understand how to use some apps, and we do give them a demo right there!
We've been enabling our clients to get on to the digital bandwagon. Websites/Apps are a starting point for most of the businesses in the digital space. Right from helping them put up a basic/complex website/app, we also come up with a digital plan for the first three months. We advise or educate them as to how digital marketing could help them build their brand or business. And more importantly, digital is also not all about sales.
SB: Who are your clients? If you could share a case study of iGenero?
Aditya: Our first social media client was George Washington University from the US and they handled their online presence for almost a year and a half. We also worked with a couple of television channels and consumer brands. We’ve worked with clients such as Wells Fargo, Times Television Network, Practo, Blenders Pride, Mahindra Group in the last few years. Almost 95% of the work we’ve done so far has been inbound and almost every client of ours has gotten us one more client!
We've been working with one of the largest banks in the world, to help reduce talent acquisition costs. The company would usually pay around 20% of the salary to the recruiters, which is quite a bit when you are hiring people in huge numbers. To reduce the cost here, we ran a few digital advertising campaigns for a period of six months. And we saw a huge jump in the quality and number of applications. We were constantly in touch with the different recruiting departments and iterated our campaigns and creatives based on performance.
SB: What is the one thing that is stopping organizations from leveraging digital marketing?
Aditya: I don’t think there’s anything really stopping organizations from getting onto digital platforms anymore. Earlier, it used to be about budgets, not being sure of what the platform offers, uncertainty about the money being spent etc. Now, it's all fairly clear, standardized and if, right means and methodologies are followed, digital can be a big deal for companies. All boils down to how they see digital and what do they want to achieve from it.
SB: SEO is becoming very difficult with every passing day. It looks like almost anything we do is black hat SEO. Can you share some SEO strategies that are not likely to get outdated?
Aditya: Yes, SEO has changed in a big way and in a good way. Gone are the days of old school SEO methods and techniques! The whole Internet has become more social and more content driven. We always hear ‘Content is the King’, and this still stands true. In fact, it’s now going to be about mobile SEO, app store SEO etc. Brands/Companies would be more particular about being discovered on mobile search than ever before.
SB: What do you think the state of digital marketing would be in 2025? Will traditional marketing be completely dead by that time?
Aditya: I don’t think anyone would be able to comment on how digital would be like in 2025. I can only say, it’d be more about predictive search/learning, making sense of data and delivering what a user is looking for without asking too many things.
SB: Any message to the entrepreneurs who wants to start their business in the Digital space?
Aditya: One needs to be aware and ready for the pace at which the industry is evolving. The product/service that you are starting with might completely change a few months down the road and you’ve got to be prepared for that. And of course, the competition is fierce, so only the better ones stand out & are around for the longer run.