Thought of celebrating my the start of the year 2007 with some interesting findings from the social networking site Orkut

With the advent of Web2.0, we see so many global social networking sites like Orkut, Hi5 , MySpace , Fropper (to name a few). And along with this , we have many Business Networking sites like LinkedIn , Ryze.But the new trend is that “These sites target both the global as well as the Indian audience”, so why not have a networking site specifically targeted at the Indian audience.This idea gave birth to many Indian social networking sites like MingleBox ,Yaari , Humsubka.

But analysis reveal that Orkut still remains the favourite social networking site among the Indian audience.But in order to drive more traffic and to get more users conncted to these,out of the box thinking is not only required on the technical side but extensive research is required to be done on the marketing side as well.

Now,being an avid(or should I say not so avid) orkut user,I happened to go into one of my friend’s scrapbook and was very impressed with the way “Marketing is done nowadays”.Just wanted to share a very good way to directly compete with your competitors,that too by entering their own territory.

Below is a small preview of a MingleBox invite which I found in one of the scrapbooks.This scrap was sent by a MingleBox senior executive and believe me , this was really impressive.

(The identity of the person who sent this scrap is not revealed for business purpose)

Below is the reply to this particular scrap on Orkut(to join MingleBox)

Just as what I have said in Successful marketing stunts,it always pays to be different and to take head-on with the competitors.Now,there are some people who are hunting on Orkut for an invitation to join other networking sites.For example,I got a scrap from a guy who wanted an invitation from my side to join Yaari

In a nutshell , time has come when Indian competitors try to be different and to do something different in order to take on the might David’s(like Orkut , Hi5 etc) in this space.

Wonder if Yaari, Humsubka and other players are listening to this 🙂

A year after its launch, Google Blog search has dethroned the popular Technorati blog search, in page hits.

According to web data accumulator, Hitwise, visits to Google Blog Search surpassed visits to Technorati, and other blog search engines such as Sphere, for the week ending 12/23/06. Moreover, the research showed Google blog search attracts a younger audience than Technorati. While 10% of visitors to Technorati were in the 18-24 age group, 34% of visitors to Google Blog Search reached that tech-savvy group. A noteworthy point about Google Blog Search’s younger audience is that Google News, like most general news sites, skews older, with only 15% of its visitors in the 18-24 group.

This could indicate that the younger users of Google News are much more likely to click on the “search blogs” link than the older users. In contrast, Technorati has been popular with the 45 and up web users.

Read the Complete article

Source : SiliconIndia
Dated : 29/12/2006

India is all set to witness the usage mobile technology undergo a revolutionary change, thanks to an enterprising IIM student. Manoj Gupta, a PGPX student at IIM Ahmedabad, is planning to tap the commercial viability to develop the digital television technology through his own venture, reported The Economic Times.

The technology, coming with a high-quality and low-cost promise, will allow viewing television on a mobile phone just by inserting a chip. It will enable the subscriber to view television without switching on his cellular phone. “The user will be able to view TV on phone which will be connected to the mobile towers. This technology will provide better resolution at low cost with less complexity,” he was quoted.

Gupta, an IIT-Mumbai alumnus, is presently in talks with a US-based firm for investing in the technology and marketing the product in India. He is also planning to set up a chip design center in Pune or Bangalore to carry the project further. The new venture will offer mobile TV service to subscribers through cellular phone carriers using digital video broadcast handheld (DVBH).

“The semi-conductor industry is yet evolving in India and there is a lot of scope in the mobile TV segment. This is part of an effort to bring more of chip designing jobs to India,” Gupta, who has six years of experience in the semi-conductor industry, told ET.

With a lot of interest an investment in the Internet Protocol Television segment in the country, this seems a hot time for Gupta to market the product. “We will only be designing the technology and the US based firm will be launching the product in the market,” says Gupta.

Source : The Smart Techie
Dated : 28/12/2006

The Karnataka government is looking to boost the nanotechnology sector by hosting an event called Bangalore Nano in December 2007. The plan is to provide a platform for that would bring together leading speakers, start-ups in nanotechnology companies and the venture capital (VC) community.?

We are trying to bring all these players on a single platform to encourage entrepreneurs in the nanotechnology segment,? said State IT & BT secretary M. N. Vidyashankar. He also informed that there are few nanotechnology companies and has an opportunity to become a booming sector.

Nanotechnology is applicable across diverse sectors from IT, BT and machine tool industry. Plans like setting up a nanotechnology incubation center are in the pipeline. The proposed location is 10,000-acre knowledge city based in the outskirts of Bangalore. This knowledge city to be developed under a public-private partnership model is to be finalized by March 2007.

With the focus on the nanotechnology meet the state government has plans to introduce numerous changes to its annual IT and biotechnology events. Vidyashankar said that, as these meets are of international stature, they have already announced the dates for 2007 and 2008.

Firstly it is looking to change the regular events by adding more content and conferences. BangaloreIT.in 2006 had its own crowd-puller in the IP zone, where numerous companies showcased its product development activity.

The state government has already come out with the tenders for hosting next year?s IT event and similar the case of Bangalore Bio. For 2005-06, it had registered exports of Rs. 37,600 crore and is all set to cross Rs. 50,000 crore during the current fiscal.

An interesting story on lessons learnt from some of the different and yet successful marketing stunts:

Lesson 1: Guess it pays to have a sense of humor about your business.
Lesson 2: Give journalists a good story, and they just may take you up on writing about it.
Lesson 3: Even the most outlandish marketing stunts–including those involving the often-dicey topic of religion–can work to a company’s advantage.
Lesson 4: No harm in being inspired by successful marketing stunts that have come before, as long as you provide your own twist.
Lesson 5: There’s something to be said for thinking big and on the fly.
Lesson 6: If you have a popular product but feel that sales are stagnant or your customers’ excitement toward the brand is weaning, it may not be a bad idea to tinker with it. If you can create some drama around your product–and tug at your consumers’ emotions–you may just find that your potential for bringing in a profit is, well, super.
Lesson 7: A marketing stunt doesn’t have to be something that nobody’s ever done before, but you should keep it fresh and exciting.
Lesson 8: If you’re going to look for inspiration for a marketing idea, why not borrow from popular culture?
Lesson 9: Creativity works, and you can apparently talk anyone into anything, if you show them the money.
Lesson 10: Generosity is a selling point in a marketing stunt, and it helped that they tapped into human nature (the lure of free products) and current events.

Read the Complete Article

This was the first time I picked up a different magazine other than my routine Business Today and Business World. The magazine in question is Money Today(December 28,2006 edition).

After going through the Table Of Contents, I found the magazine very interesting. There were many articles worth reading and one article which caught my eye was on Page 78(“What’s in a Brand” under “Career as Asset” column).

In our day to day life, we come across who are better than us (either technically/non technically/some other way).But every such person is not a Brand and this is what this article deals about. How can a person create a brand name for himself/herself or is every person a brand in himself/herself.
To get an answer to all these questions read the excerpts of the article from Money Today.

UNDERSTAND YOUR GOALS
First, you must visit your strategic career plan. Understanding your career plans will help you develop your strengths, talent and focus on opportunities that wil take you towards your career goal.
Your job designation is not your brand. Look beyond the fancy title that describes your profile in the organization. What is it that you want to accomplish? What impact do you want to have on others? Components to consider for your personal brand include: your leadership abilities; strengths; achievements; your personality traits; and your distinction qualities.Do some outside the box thinking to create a brand that doesn’t mirror anyone else’s.
CREATE YOUR USP
Tackle a situation as a specialist would do and voila you have created an identity that is different from your colleagues. Narrow your focus at work. You cannot be good with people, good with customer service, good with presentations and simultaneously good at tackling a crisis.
In other words, good is everything. Aspire to become a specialist in what you do which would lead to an increase in your worth. Package yourself well. Every brand needs packaging and if you get your image right, everything else will follow.
As you revisit your goal, you can focus on the niche areas that are crucial for your career growth thus helping you create your USP.
MAKE YOUR BRAND
Promote your strengths to get value out of your brand. One way to push yourself is to create a website, which provides resources about your subjects of interest.
Robert Scoble, the author of Scobelizer, the 23rd most highly read blog in the world according to technorati, is a case in point. As a sales support manager for NEC Mobile Solutions, his job was to answer phone calls and emails with support requests. He started using blogs to provide tech support. His blog got noticed by Microsoft’s Vic Gundotra and Scoble was offered a job. He joined Microsoft in 2003, where he produced videos that showcased employees and products of the software giant.
So he tried to be different from others and that is how he tried to make a brand for himself.
DEVELOP A PORTFOLIO
Effective brand portfolio management starts by creating a fact base about the equity in each brand and the brand’s economic contribution.
Also, plan upgrading your skills, acquiring new degrees or taking up new specialization courses. Since, brands are intangible assets that can be leveraged to build value, do take the time to develop and customize your portfolio according to the new assignment.
EVALUATE AND EVOLVE
To be able to aware of the developments taking place in your career field and being open to changes enhances your brand equity.

Mohandas Pai (the ex CFO and now the Head-HR of Infosys) reinforces the fact that a brand is built on fundamental sustained behaviour.Since you are the brand; you have to lead by example. While staying focused should be your core strength, don’t remain transfixed to one idea only. Never lost sight of what makes your talent special, promote your strengths and grow a brand that builds on them.
As you move up the corporate ladder, you can evolve your USP further to include more skills.Since,brand building is all about creating a positive image about a product, in the same manner, your personal brand will present you as an employee who is an asset to the organization.
FINAL VERDICT
It’s this BRAND factor that would give the edge over the other’s.

Yup,the wait is finally over for the Technologist, Entrepreneurial and Investor(important not to forget them since without them there is no business) community, get ready to pack your bags and go to PROTO

Register online at www.proto.in/regsiter

Technologist and Entrepreneurs registration–>Rs 500/-
Investor registration–>Rs 25000/-

Hope to see you at Indian version of the DEMO on January 20-21,2007 in Chennai

Some books on Entrepreneurship:

* Zero to One Million by Ryan P. M. Allis
* Zero to IPO by David Smith
* Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki
* Rich Dad’s Guide to Investing by Robert Kiyosaki
* New Venture Creation by Jeffrey Timmons
* Good to Great by Jim Collins
* The E-Myth by Michael Gerber
* The Young Entrepreneurs’Edge by Jennifer Kushnell
* The Young Entrepreneur’s Guide to Starting and Running a Business by Steve Mariotti
* The Portable MBA in Entrepreneurship by William D. Bygrave
* Innovation and Entrepreneurship by Peter Drucker
* Good to Great by Jim Collins
* At Work with Thomas Edison by Blain McCormick
* Multiple Streams of Income by Robert G. Allen
* On Entrepreneurship by Harvard Business Review
* Entrepreneurship.com by Tim Burns
* The Art of the Start by Guy Kawasaki
* Fire in the Belly – an exploration of the entrepreneurial spirit by Yanky Fachler

There are more books on economics , personal developement on Harinath’s Blog
Thanks Harinath for this information.