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How The Virgin Group Was Started

Ramya GovindRaj

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How The Virgin Group Was Started,Startup Stories,2018 Latest Business News,Best Motivational Stories,Virgin Group History,Richard Branson Facts,Virgin Group Founder Richard Branson,Richard Branson Success Story,Biggest Conglomerates in World,Virgin Group Founder Biography

A self titled rebel billionaire and the founder of one of the biggest conglomerates in the world, Sir Richard Branson is the owner of 400 companies in 30 countries.

Known for his alternative way of thinking, Richard Branson always challenged himself to go a step further believing that he can not only compete with large enterprises but could also do their job better. All the Virgin businesses operating today are known to work with controversial and subversive artists as well as successful ones. Almost all of the businesses started by Richard Branson challenged the established behemoths in different industries and beat them at their own game. The life story of one of the richest people in the world today is filled with highs and lows and lots of lessons to learn.

Born in Surrey England, Sir Richard Branson started his entrepreneurial journey at the age of 16. In 1968, he launched his first business, a magazine by the name Student which was run only by students. While starting a magazine in itself is a great accomplishment, Sir Richard Branson was also dyslexic, who could not read, write or spell well and was often beaten for poor behavior. The publication sold $8,000 worth of advertising in its first edition and the first run of 50,000 copies was disseminated for free. However, Branson covered the cost of publication through advertising later.

Post the success of the Student, at the age of 17, living in a London commune, Branson along with Nik Powell had the idea to start a mail order record company to help fund his magazine efforts. Considering themselves to be a ‘virgin’ to the business, both the young entrepreneurs decided to name the new company Virgin Records. Starting from a London commune, Virgin Group today has an annual revenue of over £19.5 billion. The success of Virgin Records allowed Branson to build a recording studio in 1972 in Oxfordshire, England.

The first ever record produced by Virgin Records was also an instant smash and Mike Oldfield’s single “Tubular Bells” stayed on the UK charts for 247 weeks. In the following years, Branson signed other aspiring musical groups to the label, including the Sex Pistols, The Culture Club, The Rolling Stones and Genesis. Virgin Records grew to become Virgin Music and one of the top six record companies in the world.

But, this was just the tip of the iceberg. By 1984, he decided to expand further and included the Voyager Group travel company to his cap. He added the Virgin Atlantic airline and a series of Virgin Megastores in 1984. But Branson’s iceberg was also hit by the Titanic. In a span of a decade, by 1992, Virgin was suddenly struggling to stay financially afloat.

Despite that, Richard Branson did not lose hope. He launched Virgin Radio in 1993 followed by a second record company V2 in 1996. In 1997, he launched the Virgin Trains which became the most criticised operator on the railways within a year. 1998 saw the birth of the Virgin Mobile. The Virgin Galactic an airline that will operate in space was then launched in 2004. The Virgin Active UK gym chain took shape in 2005. In 2015, the Virgin Voyages was announced which was supposed to be a new cruise line. Virgin cruise ships are set to debut in 2020 and are designed to hold 2,800 guests and a crew of 1,150 people.

Slowly but surely, the Virgin group was a part of 35 countries around the world, with nearly 70,000 employees. The company handles affairs in the United Kingdom, the United States, Australia, Canada, Asia, Europe, South Africa and beyond.

Richard Branson has set new goals for himself every step of the way challenging norms, breaking records and inspiring people to go the extra mile. Knighted for his services to entrepreneurship in 1999, he resides on his private island, the Necker Island in the British Virgin Islands, contributing to humanitarian services whenever possible and addressing important issues in the world with the same enthusiasm and vigor.

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Entrepreneur Stories

Influencer Marketing And Its Relevance In Today’s Marketing World

Smruthi Kishore

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At the very basic sense of the term, influencer marketing is a phrase that came from old and new forms of marketing. While digital marketing in itself has come a long way from the initial days, this field has now branched into a new form of marketing, influencer marketing. With more than 1.2 billion people always scrolling through the different social media platforms, influencers and influencer marketing has grown to become an important marketing technique. In the present world of digitization, this is why influencer marketing has become such a necessary tool.

1. Targeted development of brands

One of the major advantages of influencer marketing is that it is targeted toward specific brands and specific audiences. Every time you see an influencer endorsing a product you do not necessarily know about, your interest in the said brand is instantly piqued and through that, your desire for finding out more. With specific endorsements, influencer marketing helps in spreading the word to a larger audience and in attracting more people with similar interests.

2. Transparent and effective

By using dynamic influencers and engaging stories, brands are constantly increasing the kind of effect this content has. Furthermore, by using social media to the most of its abilities, influencers use these platforms to redirect customers to their websites. With a unique collaboration of the old and the new, existing and emerging brands are constantly reinventing themselves as a source for new material on a regular basis.

3. Making direct measurement

Instagram recently introduced a new analytics features. This new analytics feature lets brands track performances on a weekly basis and lets owners track data according to very specific KPIs. Also, guided measurements like these help brands and agencies in creating a streamlined process for delivering their content to the world. Further, influencers can also track the kind of response they are getting from the brands as well.

4. Influencer marketing adds credibility to the brand

How many times have you looked at an influencer endorsing a product and realised that the brand they are promoting could actually be of value to you? Time and time again, when you see new faces on the internet clubbed with already known faces, your faith in the credibility of these brands increases. As a user, you are subconsciously drawn into looking at what they are, even if you don’t invest in them.

5. Your brand is introduced to the world as a leader

While this may not be from the perspective of a consumer, when you connect your brand with an established and innovative celebrity, it gives your company an edge over others in the market. Celebrity and influencer endorsement like this says you, as a company, are a trendsetter even before you make it big in the world. Further, consumer studies show that more than 85 % of the world finds new brands through social media and through the celebrities they follow.

Digital marketing is no longer just restricted to one form of getting the word out about your brand on the internet. With influencer marketing becoming increasingly popular, there are now different methods to promote the visibility of your brand. If you think we missed out on any other reasons as to why influencer marketing is important, comment and let us know!

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Women Leaders Who Are Changing The World

Smruthi Kishore

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World Changing Women Leaders,Inspiring Women Leaders,Female Leaders Inspirational Stories,5 Inspiring Female CEOs,Most Powerful Women Leaders,Successful Lady Leaders Stories,5 CEO Success Stories,Facebook CEO,Sheryl Sandberg,Kiran Mazumdar Shaw,PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi,Arundhati Bhattacharya,Arundhati Bhattacharya,Startup Stories,Best Startups in India 2018

Women are taking over the world one position at a time and in the last few years, it comes as no surprise that there are more women in influential roles now, as compared to the last few years. Here is a list of women who are ruling the startup world and the tech world by being really great at their job.

1. Sheryl Sandberg

There are several reasons why Sheryl Sandberg is one the most powerful COOs Facebook has ever had. Working closely with Mark Zuckerberg, Sheryl always promoted gender equality in the workplace and became a strong force to be reckoned with by always encouraging women. So powerful was Sandberg’s 2013 Ted Talk speech, that her line “Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead,” inspired the formation of an organization called Lean In. Apart from partnering with influential companies to spread the voice of women, Lean In also helps empower women and realise their ambitions. Sheryl Sandberg has always been very vocal about her concerns and through the years, she has proven how you can get things done if you really want to make something happen.

2. Kiran Mazumdar Shaw

While an entire company stands in awe of the greatness that is Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, not many know, this lady became the CEO of Biocon without wanting to be one. In fact, she has gone on record and said Biocon was formed as a result of all the gender bias Shaw went through during the early parts of her life. Now, nearly 45 years later, Biocon has grown from just being an enzyme manufacturing company to being the most successful biopharmaceutical company in the country. Helping people fight a wide range of diseases from cancer to diabetes, Shaw made sure Biocon helps in curing ailments which are otherwise extremely harmful.

3. Indra Nooyi 

Recently retired after a long and successful reign as the CEO of Pepsico, Indra Nooyi is an inspiration to women all over the world. What made Nooyi so great as a CEO was how effectively she handled her personal and work life. Her motto to achieve success was never taking work back home and to always focus on the main task at hand, a principle which made her reach the CEO position within a couple of years. Her success and dedication to work was so great, she was included in Forbes’s list of ‘Most Influential Women’ in 2008! One of the reasons for her stupendous rise to success was the strong work life balance Nooyi maintained throughout her life, never letting one take over the other.

4. Arundhati Bhattacharya 

The first woman to head State Bank of India, the largest public sector bank in India, Arundhati Bhattacharya was instrumental in bringing about a large number of changes in banking. Working toward making the life of women better, not just in the corporate world, but in the other walks of life as well, Arundhati Bhattacharya has lived her life to the fullest, giving everyone around her major life goals!

5. Oprah Winfrey

Growing from having nothing to her name to having the world respecting and knowing her, Oprah Winfrey has come a long way! Now known for being the first African American woman billionaire, Oprah has been popular through the years for hosting a talk show which looks at helping people all over the world. After she started making her opinion public, Oprah grew to become one of the most influential women in the world by accepting her past.

It is now the time of women to come to the top and stand apart from the crowd. If you think there are other women who need to be mentioned on this list, comment and let us know!

 

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Richard Branson Life Lessons

Smruthi Kishore

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Richard Branson Life Lessons,Virgin Group Founder,Richard Branson Success Story,Richard Branson Inspiring Story,Business Magnate Richard Branson,Virgin Richard Branson Life Story,Richard Branson Life History,Success Life Story of Virgin Group Founder,Richard Branson Facts,Latest Startup News India,startup stories

Sixty eight, rich and successful, Richard Branson has taught people the way to live life is either king size or not at all. An owner of 500 companies, with a personal wealth of over $ 5 billion, Branson has given life lessons that are extraordinarily amazing. Here’s looking at some of the things the man behind Virgin Atlantic has told and taught the rest of the world.

1. Your age doesn’t define you 

When Branson left school at the age of 16 to start his first ever magazine, little did he know he had sowed the seeds for a successful life. Over the years, with each of his ventures becoming a bigger and bigger success, Branson realised he had a lot to learn and a long way to grow. Soon enough, he understood age was just a number and to get ahead, one needed to work extremely hard in life.

2. it is important to enjoy every moment of life 

The moment you start enjoying what you do, the results are immediate and instantly seen. Branson loves everything he does and with the success one sees from these ventures, he has clearly applied this principle in life. In fact, when he started Virgin Atlantic, the principle of this company was to make shopping fun and through the years, one can see how closely he has followed this particular theme!

3. Realise you are not doing anything wrong by working for free

Without realising it, when you work for free, you are broadening your horizons to things you did not think were possible. In fact, when Virgin Records started recording music, the first thing they did was to let multi instrumentalist, Mike Oldfield, use their recording studio for free. Soon after his record dropped, Mike became a sensation and Virgin Records became home for all musicians.

4. You learn when you do things 

Without a journalism degree (or any other kind of degree, for that matter,) Branson started his magazine company to a whopping success right just by learning on the job. Learn through the mistakes and grow with them. The more you grow, the more you learn not just from your business, but also from the people around you. However, while it is okay to learn from your mistakes, it is important to know you aren’t making the same ones over and over again.

5. It is okay to take risks 

Never one to wait for things or one who had the patience for things to happen for him, Richard Branson believes in taking risks by the horns and running with them. Make sure you throw yourself deep into the work you do and when you take risks, you know the results are going to be what you want. Incidentally, one of the major risks Branson took ended up in him having to mortgage his house.

An owner of a host of extremely successful companies and a yacht, Richard Branson clearly knows how to live life well. If you have learnt anything else from this great man, comment and let us know.

 

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