StartupTalky presents Recap'22. This is a series of interviews in which we conduct in-depth discussions with founders & industry leaders to understand their growth in 2022 and their predictions for the future.
The media industry plays a crucial role in shaping the perception of products and services in the minds of customers. With the constant advent of new technologies and players in the field, the industry is highly competitive, and businesses are increasingly investing in advertising to attract and retain their customers. In 2021, global digital advertising spending reached a tremendous $521.02 billion, and this is projected to rise to $876 billion by 2026.
As a result, advertisers must stay informed about the latest market trends and technologies to serve their customers effectively. With this level of investment in advertising, businesses must keep a close eye on the changing landscape of the media industry to succeed. Therefore, staying up-to-date with the industry's developments is essential for any modern business seeking to gain a competitive advantage and attract and retain customers.
For this Interview, we invited, Raghu Seelamsetty, Founder and CEO of Parva and we talked about the growth, challenges, insights, and future opportunities in the media industry.
StartupTalky: What does your company do? What was the motivation/vision with which you started?
Raghu: We are a Native Ad Network of Premium Publishers. We believe that the changes happening in the industry w.r.t. to privacy whether it is the impending end of cookies or regulations such as GDPR and the Indian Data Protection Law will have a profound impact on our business. Platforms that are able to aggregate large users in a privacy-safe manner will get a disproportionate share of the overall market. We believe that Parva will be one of those players.
StartupTalky: What is/are the USP/s of your products?
Raghu: We provide a large audience base that comes to our properties multiple times a day for news, entertainment, and information. Our audiences are consuming content in the language that they are comfortable with and an environment that they trust. We are a must-have platform to reach audiences in a high-trust, premium, and brand-safe environment.
StartupTalky: How has the media industry changed in recent years, and how has your company adapted to these changes?
Raghu: The Media industry is in a constant state of flux. The last few years have seen the emergence of scaled solutions in OTT and retail media. OTT is great for top-of-funnel activities and retail media for driving performance. We see an opportunity to provide a scaled solution for driving mid-funnel activities such as interest and consideration.
StartupTalky: How do you stay up to date on the latest trends and developments in the media industry?
Raghu: By constantly meeting people, getting their feedback and insights, attending events (Offline/Online), subscribing to industry news and journals, etc.
StartupTalky: What key metrics do you track to check the company's growth and performance?
Raghu: Our ability to have key conversations, meeting the right people, getting enough briefs from customers, our ability to turn around the briefs in a timely manner, our ability to convert business and customer retention.
StartupTalky: What were the most significant challenges your company faced in the past year and how did you overcome them?
Raghu: Our biggest challenge for the previous year was building awareness about our products and offerings in a world where most of our customers were working from home. Established brands, in our business, already had created space for themselves in our target market. Creating this space for ourselves was the biggest challenge when we were doing business online. This is changing now as most of our customers are coming back to the office and we continue to expand our team to reach them in a face-to-face setting.
StartupTalky: What are the different strategies you use for marketing? Tell us about any growth hack which you pulled off.
Raghu: We have used email marketing and PR well. We have a finite set of target accounts and share our success stories with them via these channels. This helps us build trust and stay relevant to our customers.
StartupTalky: What are the important tools and software you use to run your business smoothly?
Raghu: We use the entire suite of Google Business products including Google Meet, Google Office, etc. We also use LinkedIn to find and reach our target audience.
StartupTalky: What opportunities do you see for future growth in your industry in India and the world?
Raghu: As India’s per capita income and disposable income increase, we will continue to see an emergence of new sets of advertisers looking to reach their target customers. This growth will help fuel the media industry.
StartupTalky: What lessons did your team learn in the past year and how will these inform your future plans and strategies?
Raghu: Our biggest lesson from last year is to be in front of the customer as much as possible. Be nimble, put the customers' needs first, and really do everything we can to make them succeed. The more we do this, the more we will succeed.
StartupTalky: How do you plan to expand the Customers, product, and team base in the future?
Raghu: We are investing in expanding our team. Our goal this year is to focus on improving our product, providing better service, and aligning ourselves better with our customers' needs.
StartupTalky: One tip that you would like to share with people reading this article who want to get into entrepreneurship?
Raghu: Stay aligned with the vision you had when you set out while you iterate from day to day.
We thank Raghu for spending his valuable time and sharing his learnings with all of us.