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Controversies That Shook The Startup World

Smruthi Kishore



Controversies in Startup World, Controversies That Shook The Startup World, Featured, Indian Startup World, Indian Startup World Top 4 Controversies, Recent Controversies in India 2018, Snapdeal Flipkart Merge Disaster, Startup Ecosystem, Startup News India, startup stories

With growth comes change and with change comes a huge responsibility: the responsibility of building a reputation and keeping it clean and untarnished. Like with everything in the world, the startup life is no different. As people keep having new ideas and new thoughts, it seems but natural to have things go more wrong than right. With the increase in the number of startups, the number of people fighting for the same positions also increase. As things progress at an alarmingly fast pace, it comes as no surprise that there are more controversies than positive things in the startup world. To prove just this point, here is looking at some of the highly talked about controversies of the past couple of years.

1. Snapdeal Flipkart Merge Disaster 

Quite possibly one of the most talked about controversy, the Snapdeal Flipkart merger failure was in the headlines for all the wrong reasons. Back in the year 2016, Snapdeal was one of the Indian startups with a really high valuation ($ 6.5 billion.) However, despite reaching the pinnacle of success, the company did not have the capacity to sustain at that level for much longer. With Snapdeal struggling to make its relevance felt, SoftBank proposed a merger between the homegrown e commerce platform, Flipkart. What made this deal hit the headlines was several rumours floating around about Snapdeal firing employees. Furthermore, the Snapdeal founders made multiple public statements about their disapproval of the merger.

Post the breakdown of merger talks, on August 1, it was reported the Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal-founded startup was gearing up to dismiss close to 80% of its employees. Durimg the second week of the same month, former and current employees of Snapdeal anonymously sent the founders a letter, addressing it to the PMO, accusing the company of not letting the merger go through for ‘personal motives. With all this going on, Flipkart saw no option but to back off, leaving Snapdeal all by itself in the dust.

2. Ola and Uber sue each other 

The March of 2016 was an interesting year, atleast in relationship to Ola and Uber. The two rivals had just entered the big leagues in the cab sector, with each at the other’s throat for the first place. Uber started off the feud by suing Ola. According to Uber, Ola was using fake accounts and booking rides on Uber, with the sole aim of cancelling them once booked. According to reports, Ola created over 94,000 fake accounts and booked over 4 lakh rides. Not only did this disrupt Uber’s business, it also prevented genuine riders the chance of getting a cab.  Ola replied to Uber’s petition saying the lawsuit was filed in an attempt to bypass the laws of the land by foreign companies who run their operations in this country for profit without due regard for the applicable laws.  Uber retorted though they are established in San Francisco, they have a hyperlocal team solving problems that are locally relevant. “Like our competitors, we received most of our funding from ‘foreign’ investors,” Uber said in response to the accusation! As bystanders, this war was entertaining as hell, with the only drawback being that I did not really get cabs on time!

3. PayTm accused for propagating a political agenda 

When Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced demonetization and the absence of Rs. 500 and Rs. 1000 currency notes, PayTm put out a full page advertisement. The ad thanked Mr. Modi with a message saying the Prime Minister had finally taken a decision in favour of the growth of the country. Post the advert and the announcement, PayTm’s revenue saw a growth of 200% in terms of revenue, with more than triple the number of app downloads. Fintech in India responded strongly to this move, questioning the ethics and moral conduct, with PayTm’s every move put under scrutiny! What made the entire issue all the more controversial was Arvind Kejriwal’s comment about how the country was moving towards the Dark Side of Digitisation. After a lot of frenzy on Twitter and other social media platforms, the issue only quieted down when Vijay Shekhar Sharma (PayTm CEO) put out a public statement saying it was not only PayTm benefiting through the move but the entire country as well! Who knew free speech was only a law in the Constitution and not a civil right?

4. The Qarth and Ola misrepresentation scandal! 

Qarth Technologies, founded by Perit Shrivastava and Aditya Shrivastava, skyrocketed into the headlines for stealing identities through a self developed “Aadhaar e KYC verification” mobile app. While this in itself was a scandal, what made the entire affair all the more interesting was Ola’s involvement in the issue. Founded in the year 2012, Qarth was bought over by the home grown cab aggregator, Ola, in an attempt to increase the efficiency of its mobile wallet.

The moment Qarth’s illegal activities hit the headlines, Ola promptly denied any involvement in the matter, stating they had no hand to play in Qarth’s criminal activities. However, despite the government’s stringent search into Ola’s history with Qarth, no direct link could be found between the two companies and Qarth was left to pick up the pieces on its own.

The startup world is exciting, motivating and invigorating. With growth comes great responsibilities and great expectations. However, when these cannot be met, things fall apart, resulting in chaos. If you think we missed out on some truly shocking controversies in the startup world, feel free to comment and let us know!

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Top Ten

Jack Dorsey Life Lessons And Learn Worthy Facts

Smruthi Kishore



Jack Dorsey Life Lessons,Jack Dorsey Learn Worthy Facts,Latest Startup News India,startup stories,Best Startups in India 2018,Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey Life Lessons,CEO of Twitter,Jack Dorsey Success Lessons,Leadership Lessons From Twitter CEO,Jack Dorsey Inspiration Story

Jack Dorsey, a serial entrepreneur known for founding not one, but two immensely successful startups (Twitter and Square,) has led quite an exemplary life. From living life king size to working on his dreams with a one track focus, Dorsey does everything in his power to make sure he puts out only his best foot forward. Always sporting immaculately cut hair, Jack Dorsey’s life has inspiration written all over. Here are some truly riveting life lessons from the man who followed his dreams and made both of them come true.

1. An idea is all it takes

Dorsey believes the biggest mistake an entrepreneur can make is to look at achieving their goals without a clear idea. More often than not, businesses succeed only when they are worked on with a clear idea in mind. “It doesn’t start by you waking up and saying ‘I want to start a business,’ it starts by you waking up and saying ‘I’m really passionate about this thing and I’m going to do whatever it takes to make it work,’” Dorsey said. While passion and dreams are all well and good, the route to success is only achieved when you have a strong and solid idea in place.

2. Routines are important 

While people think living the startup life is all about haphazard lifestyles and irregular patterns, Dorsey thinks otherwise. According to him, only when you have a clear routine for your everyday life, can you really work toward being successful. Without structure and discipline, everything falls into chaos and chaos has never been man’s best friend. “All my days are themed. Monday is management. At Square we have a directional meeting, at Twitter we have our opcomm [operating committee] meeting. Tuesday is product, engineering, and design. Wednesday is marketing, growth, and communications. Thursday is partnership and developers. Friday is company and culture. It works in 24-hour blocks. On days beginning with T, I start at Twitter in the morning, then go to Square in the afternoon. Sundays are for strategy, and I do a lot of job interviews. Saturday is a day off,” Dorsey said while talking about schedules and routines.

3. Simplicity is the way of life 

Jack Dorsey believes in the simple joys and ways of life. Extravagant things tend to fail because there isn’t anything else to back up what you have achieved so far. Furthermore, the more you do, the more people expect and that is never a good thing. Dorsey not only lives this way, but has also instilled this rule into the way he functions at work. Take Twitter, for example. People say so many things with such limited characters, giving readers and followers something truly meaningful to look read. If there was too much text, one would simply ignore the message or even miss it, right?

4. Operate through the right communication 

When you are at work and two different departments are not talking to each other, it is important to make them sit down and have open communication. Communication is the key to a successful business. When your clients see you not talking to each other openly and on a regular basis, they will instantly realise something is amiss and as a boss, that is not a message you want known to the world. Dorsey believes in open communications, no matter how serious the issue or how dire the problem. Talk it out and clear the air, thereby making room for a clear road. “We make sure we design and engineer the company and the organization as much as we do the product and the service we have built,” Dorsey said while talking about communication.

5. It is okay to break the rules 

Jack Dorsey’s father ran a pizza business and within the first week, he hired a woman who he fell in love with instantly. Ten months later, Dorsey was born. The lesson here is that even if you have set rules for the way your organization should run, it really is okay to break them. Everything happens for a reason and when you realise this, you know life is a big jug of lemonade you absolutely love!

Jack Dorsey’s life is one everyone wants to lead and when you see a man like him succeeding because of the lessons he lives by, you know your life is going to be a success as well! If you have learnt other things from Jack Dorsey’s inspiring life, comment and let us know!

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Email Marketing Facts That Will Blow Your Mind

Smruthi Kishore



Email Marketing Facts,Email Marketing Facts 2018,Interesting Email Marketing Facts,Email Marketing Strategy,Email Marketing Tools,Unknown Facts About Email Marketing,Email Marketing Tips,Best Startups in India 2018,Latest Startup News India,startup stories

If you thought the age of email marketing was dead, then think again. It is still one of the most relevant forms of marketing as it ensures one of the highest conversion rates when it comes to digital marketing. Being extremely versatile and user friendly, email marketing is one of the most effective and quirky methods in getting your point across. Here are some facts about email marketing which will definitely blow your mind and make you want to use this method instantly!

1. Open rate for emails 

Email marketing is ingenious in the sense that even if the mail comes to you with a really bizarre subject line, you still want to open it and read. Why? Simply because curiosity kills the cat! According to recent statistics, the average rate of people opening emails is 50 %, which means more than half the people getting your mails open them without giving a second thought to what they have received.

2. Email marketing has the highest return of investment 

Reinforcing the ideology that email marketing isn’t dead, numbers have proven that out of all the different forms of marketing, email marketing has the highest return of investment. In fact, email marketing has an ROI of 122 %, which is four times higher than the other forms of marketing, including methods like social media marketing, direct mail and paid marketing.

3. Email marketing works because it helps people connect with the brand

When you receive personalised emails from the brands you like, does it not make you feel extremely special? According to recent studies, over 71% of millenials like receiving emails about brands and products they like because it increases familiarity with the product. Furthermore, 66 % of GenEx users like interacting with brands online and one of the ways they can do so is through emails.

4. Email marketing through images is more effective 

According to several facts, our brain processes images 60,000 times faster than text. Increase the image to text ratio and make sure your email tells stories majorly through the images than through the text. Furthermore, the size of our human finger tip is 46px squared, so when you are sending mails, make sure the buttons is around that size and that it is easy for people to open the mails.

5. Targeted emails help in attracting customers 

When you target your emails towards specific customers, there is more of a chance that people who open these mails will buy at least one product. In fact, it has been recorded that close to 44 % of the people who open mails specifically created for them will buy the product for which the mail has been sent! Therefore, targeted mails increase the kind of interaction people have with the brand and improves relationships between the brand and you!

6. iPhones don’t let you send emails with long subject lines 

Email marketing tailor made for iPhone users is extremely effective. Why? It ensures the subject line you use has a limit of 32 characters, ensuring the text written is exactly what you want to convey, not more and not less. On a side note, do not send constant emails because it results in people unsubscribing to your product!

7. Videos with emails increase conversion by 300%

Just like people are more attracted to images when they look at an email, videos are extremely effective as well. When you are sending emails with the idea of marketing your content, include video content and make sure that you have an interactive thumbnail, so there is redirection to your website as well. Also, when you send videos with backlinks, there is an increase in traffic on your website, thereby improving the chances of your visitors’ conversion.

8Outlook is the most used email interface

When it comes to looking at emails, around 50 % to 60 % of the working population spend anywhere between ten to sixty minutes browsing through their mails and looking at content on their phones and desktops. From all these people browsing through their mails, Outlook accounts for 56 % of all desktop emails and close to 16 % of all opens from different systems. Definitely still one of the most used forms of email!

9. Email marketing is more effective than tweets

Research shows that in comparison to promoting your data on social media platforms like Twitter, email marketing is far more effective. According to recently collected information, emails are 6 times more likely to be opened rather than tweets. Further, emails are 40 times more effective in acquiring new customers as opposed to Facebook!

10. Reach through email marketing is MUCH higher than social media

While email marketing is definitely the most effective way to promote your data, what comes as an added proof to this fact is 90 % of the emails you send definitely make it to the recipient’s inbox while only 2 % of the posts you put up are noticed by people on social media! The lesson here is to make sure you put out engaging content through your emails, so your ROI moves from 90 % to 100 %!

Email marketing increases the chances of people recalling your brand, ensuring it stays remembered for a long period of time. If you think we missed out on any other facts about email marketing, comment and let us know!



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The Power Of Offers And How They Increase Sales

Smruthi Kishore



Power Of Offers,How They Increase Sales,How to Increase Sales,Best Sales Promotion Ideas,Business Strategy to Increase Sales,Marketing Strategies to Increase Sales,Sales Marketing Strategy,Best Startups in India 2018,Latest Startup News India,Startup Stories,5 Ways to Increase Sales,Ideas to Increase Sales

Every time you look at an attractive offer, doesn’t your heart race a little, your palms become just a bit clammier and your pace a little faster? There is something to be said about the way offers make you feel and the way they increase your excitement for a product you didn’t even think you wanted. Despite living in a world where there is always something cheaper to look forward to, offers are the best way to increase your sales and attract customers. If you are still not convinced, then these reasons are what you need to increase the number of people coming into your store.

1. Offers increases traffic 

One of the major advantages of offers is they last only for a limited period of time. With social media being used to its complete advantage for marketing and promotions, the appeal of offers has increased a lot. An important point to note here, make sure you clearly display the offer and you have all the details mentioned while promoting your offer on all social media platforms.

2. Offers increases room for new ideas


One of the major advantages of offers is it frees up room for new ideas and products. Not only can you get rid of stuff that doesn’t give your brand that edge, offers help in giving you clarity of thought in what to do next. From looking at how customers react to what you have in store to looking at what you can do to increase traffic, offers help in making the change you need for your business!

3. Offers help build relationships 

When you offer promotions with specific target customers in mind, it helps in improving relationships with your customers. To make offers more attractive, make sure you tailor them to specific groups of customers. This helps in knowing what your clients want and in understanding their perspective. Furthermore, they let people know you are interested in working with them for a long period of time and not just for when they come for one particular purchase.

4. Offers help in meeting and improving your sales target 

Every business usually has weekly, monthly or quarterly targets which absolutely need to be met, no matter what. When you have offers that are attractive and enticing, they increase the chances of these sales targets being met with a stupendous success. Not only can you meet the required target, if timed right, you can ride through the lean periods without a backlash through offers.

5. Offers help save money 

Finally, despite all the other advantages, one of the primary reasons why offers are so attractive is they help save money when you least expect it. When you have an inventory filled with things you do not want, offers help in getting rid of baggage which is dragging your overall profit ratio down. Not only can you save money with this, you also save money for the lean periods!

When you use social media and different marketing tools to your advantage, you increase the overall performance and also make sure you have a customer base who is more than satisfied with you as a brand! What are some of the offers that work really well? Comment and let us know!

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