This November, I got a chance to be a part of Google Launchpad – Google’s one of a kind startup mentorship program where Google identified 20 of the most promising startups in India and provided them mentorship and guidance in the areas of UI/UX Design, Product Development & Strategy, and Go-To-Market Strategy among other things. It was a really enlightening and exhilarating experience to work and network with some of the top executives of the Google Developers Group as well as the founders of these 20 very exciting ventures.

I attended the event as a part of the Google Developers Startup Launch Mentors’ Program that provides specialists in go-to-market strategy like myself a chance to work with these start-ups for a period of 3 months to assist them and help them develop a go-to-market strategy for their product or service. I was assigned to work with 4 startups, with whom I had detailed discussions regarding their business plans and strategy, and helped them provide direction and tips on how to deal with the most common problems that start-ups face while trying to scale up. While trying to explain concepts to them, it was also a great learning experience for me to try and understand different business models and the challenges faced by them, and to strategize how
marketing, especially on digital media, can be used to increase product awareness and raise sales.

google_launchpad

The 5 day event saw one day each dedicated to the various important modules/areas that are important for new businesses that is Product Development, UI/UX Development, Technology Development, andGo-to-Market; and on the 5th day, the chosen start-ups were given a chance to pitch to venture capitalists and investors. I provided mentorship for the Go-To-Market Track on February 5.

I was given 4 very interesting, unique and promising start-ups to work with: –

1. Adwyze: A company looking to provide a new and fresh approach to ads and campaign management and optimization through its easy to use platform.

2. Expin.me: A company that has created a new multi-lingual, attractive and socially integrated expression platform that allows users to create content in various forms and also provides a relevant audience.

3. SimpleWealth: A fin-tech startup that allows users to aggregate all their accounts such as banking, credit cards, investments, etc. in one place and then leverages the power of Analytics to provide unbiased wealth management suggestions.

4. ShopLook: A company offering a new way of buying apparels and accessories online by helping users comparing various looks and then get the best deal across stores.
A common go-to-market related challenge that most start-ups face is creating a separate identity, choosing a target audience, and ultimately choosing the right mix of digital media platforms to get maximum exposure. It is very clear for most of these forward looking and digital startups that digital media and social media marketing is the way to go when it comes to product launch and advertising. I worked and will continue to work with these 4 start-ups to identify their target audiences and messaging strategy, and ultimately help them design cross-platform media and marketing campaigns. Overall, it was a great experience attending this event, and I hope to be able to get a chance to attend this next year too!