Marketing in the Digital Space- Navigating the New Frontier

In today’s fast-paced, interconnected world, digital marketing has become a cornerstone of business strategy. With the proliferation of the internet and the rise of social media, marketers are presented with unprecedented opportunities to connect with consumers and promote their products and services. However, navigating the digital space can be challenging, as it requires a deep understanding of the digital landscape and its ever-changing dynamics. In this article, we will explore the key concepts and strategies of marketing in the digital space, and discuss how businesses can leverage these opportunities to drive success.

The Digital Landscape

The digital landscape encompasses the vast ecosystem of online platforms, channels, and technologies that make up the internet. From websites and search engines to social media networks and email marketing, the digital space offers a wide array of avenues for businesses to promote their brand and engage with consumers. However, the digital landscape is constantly evolving, with new technologies, trends, and consumer behaviors shaping the way businesses interact with their target audience.

One of the key aspects of the digital landscape is social media, which has revolutionized the way businesses connect with consumers. Social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn have billions of active users, offering businesses an unprecedented opportunity to reach out to potential customers. Social media marketing involves creating and sharing content on these platforms to promote products, services, and brand messaging. It requires a deep understanding of consumer behaviors on social media and the ability to create engaging, shareable content that resonates with the target audience.

Another important aspect of the digital landscape is search engine optimization (SEO), which involves optimizing a website’s content and structure to improve its visibility in search engine results. SEO is crucial for businesses to drive organic traffic to their websites and rank higher in search engine rankings. It involves various strategies such as keyword research, content optimization, technical SEO, and link building. Businesses need to stay updated with the latest SEO trends and algorithms to ensure their website’s visibility in search results.

Mobile marketing is also a critical component of the digital space, as mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets have become the primary means of accessing the internet for many consumers. Mobile marketing involves creating content that is specifically tailored for mobile devices, such as responsive websites, mobile apps, and SMS marketing. Businesses need to optimize their digital assets for mobile devices to provide a seamless user experience and capture the attention of mobile users.

Key Strategies for Marketing in the Digital Space

To succeed in the digital space, businesses need to adopt strategic approaches that align with the dynamics of the digital landscape. Here are some key strategies for marketing in the digital space:


Content Marketing: Content is at the heart of digital marketing. Creating high-quality, valuable, and relevant content is crucial for engaging with consumers and building brand authority. Content marketing involves creating and sharing content through various channels such as websites, blogs, social media, and email marketing. The content should be tailored to the preferences and behaviors of the target audience and should provide value in the form of information, entertainment, or inspiration.

Social Media Marketing: Social media has become a powerful marketing tool, allowing businesses to connect with consumers, build brand awareness, and promote products and services. Social media marketing involves creating and sharing content on social media platforms, engaging with followers, running ads, and analyzing performance. It requires a deep understanding of the target audience’s preferences, behaviors, and trends on social media, as well as the ability to create engaging, shareable content that resonates with the audience.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO): SEO is crucial for businesses to improve their website’s visibility in search engine results and drive organic traffic. It involves optimizing a website’s content, structure, and technical aspects to make it more search engine-friendly. SEO requires thorough keyword research, content optimization

Pay Per Click (PPC)

PPC drives traffic to your website by paying a publisher every time your ad is clicked. One of the most common types of PPC is Google Ads, which allows you to pay for top slots on Google’s search engine results pages at a price “per click” of the links you place.

Affiliate Marketing

This is a type of performance-based advertising where you receive a commission for promoting someone else’s products or services on your website. Affiliate marketing channels include:

Hosting video ads through the YouTube Partner Program.

Posting affiliate links from your social media accounts.

This is part of the relatively new wave of influencer marketing. Creating a campaign using influencers can be a highly effective form of affiliate marketing. Finding the right content creators can take your digital campaign to the next level.

Native Advertising

Native advertising refers to advertisements that are primarily content-led and featured on a platform alongside other, non-paid content. BuzzFeed-sponsored posts are a good example, but many people also consider social media advertising to be “native” — Facebook advertising and Instagram advertising, for example.

Email Marketing

Companies use email marketing as a way of communicating with their audiences. Email is often used to promote content, discounts and events, as well as to direct people toward the business’s website.


Branding and Brand Promotions- Creating a Lasting Impression

Branding and brand promotions play a crucial role in today’s competitive business landscape. With countless products and services vying for consumers’ attention, effective branding has become more important than ever to create a lasting impression and establish a strong presence in the market. Here we will delve into the significance of branding and brand promotions, and how they can drive business success.

What is Branding?

Branding is more than just a logo or a tagline; it encompasses the entire identity and image of a business or product. It is the perception and emotional connection that consumers have with a brand. A well-defined brand communicates the values, personality, and unique selling proposition of a business, setting it apart from its competitors. It creates recognition, trust, and loyalty among consumers, and forms the foundation for building a long-term relationship.

Why is Branding Important?

Branding is essential for several reasons. Firstly, it helps businesses differentiate themselves from their competitors. In a crowded marketplace, a strong brand can make a business stand out and be remembered by consumers. A memorable brand increases brand recall, leading to increased customer loyalty and repeat business.

Secondly, branding establishes trust and credibility. A well-crafted brand conveys professionalism, reliability, and consistency, which can instill confidence in consumers. Trust is a vital factor in consumer decision-making, and a strong brand can give businesses a competitive edge.

Thirdly, branding can evoke emotions and create a connection with consumers. Consumers are more likely to be loyal to brands that resonate with their values, beliefs, and emotions. A powerful brand story can create an emotional bond, leading to increased customer loyalty and advocacy.

Brand Promotions: Driving Brand Awareness and Engagement

Brand promotions are strategies and activities that businesses use to promote their brand, increase brand awareness, and engage with consumers. Brand promotions can take many forms, including advertising campaigns, social media campaigns, influencer partnerships, events, and other promotional activities. The goal of brand promotions is to create buzz, generate interest, and drive consumer engagement with the brand.

Here are some key elements of effective brand promotions:

Consistency: Brand promotions should be consistent with the overall brand identity and messaging. Consistency in brand promotions helps reinforce the brand image and message, and creates a cohesive and unified brand experience for consumers.

Authenticity: Brand promotions should be authentic and aligned with the brand’s values, personality, and positioning. Authentic brand promotions resonate with consumers and create a genuine connection, leading to increased brand loyalty.

Creativity: Brand promotions should be creative and innovative to capture consumers’ attention in today’s cluttered marketing landscape. Creative promotions can create a memorable impression and set a brand apart from its competitors.

Engagement: Brand promotions should encourage consumer engagement and interaction. Activities such as contests, giveaways, and user-generated content can foster consumer involvement, creating a sense of ownership and loyalty towards the brand.

Multi-channel Approach: Brand promotions should leverage various marketing channels to reach a wider audience. A multi-channel approach that includes social media, email marketing, content marketing, and offline channels can help amplify the brand message and maximize brand exposure.

Measurement: Brand promotions should be measurable to assess their effectiveness. Key performance indicators (KPIs) such as brand awareness, consumer engagement, website traffic, and sales can help businesses evaluate the success of their brand promotions and make data-driven decisions.

Branding and brand promotions are crucial components of a successful marketing strategy. A strong brand creates recognition, trust, and loyalty among consumers, while brand promotions drive brand awareness, engagement, and advocacy. By crafting a compelling brand identity, communicating the brand message consistently, and leveraging creative and engaging brand promotions, businesses can create a lasting impression.    


Reverberation of Startup Ecosystem in Northeast India

Jishnu Nath, a school-going teenager from the Barpeta district of Assam, is an innovator in the making. With 10 innovative products already in his kit, the young lad wants to study Electrical Engineering and then found his own startup. Jishnu’s parents are giving no opportunity a miss that could take their son a step closer to his goal. Such kind of entrepreneurial aspiration and the zealous support from parents were rare, if not unimaginable, in Northeast India, 10 years back. The startup buzz has finally taken Northeast India by storm, and for good.

The recently announced States’ Startup Ranking 2021 by DPIIT has put NER under national spotlight. While Assam and Arunachal Pradesh have been recognized as Leaders in Category A and B respectively, Meghalaya has been dubbed as the Best Performer in Category B. States like Manipur (Aspiring Leader – Category B), Tripura (Aspiring Leader – Category B) and Mizoram (Emerging Startup Ecosystem – Category B) have also been duly recognized for the gradual coming of age of the startup ecosystems.

The rankings may sound like music to the ears. But it took a good many numbers of years for the region to realize and accept the concept and importance of startups. If we go merely 7 years back, the word ‘startup’ baffled a majority of the people. While a few ‘maverick, rule-breakers’ did dare to break themselves free from the job-seeking conditioning to embark on a lonely, startup journey, the startup ecosystem existed incoherently in bits and pieces, if it existed at all.

Today, however, the startup ecosystem in the region has assumed a position where corporates, investors and even the nationally renowned startup companies are unabashedly expressing their interest to explore the motley possibilities in the region. A generous amount of the credit for this would go to Government of India’s Startup India initiative, which jolted and inspired the Northeastern states to unbury the latent entrepreneurial potential of the region. This sparked industry-academia partnerships and government intervention to activate the entrepreneurship development cells and incubation centres, as well as facilitate workshops and Business Plan contests for the youth. A perfect instance to mention is the intervention by the Mizoram State Entrepreneurship Development Monitoring Committee (MEDMOC), a nodal body of the Government of Mizoram, to partner with B-School incubator, IIM Calcutta Innovation Park, for launching the state’s biggest annual innovation challenge – Mizoram Kailawn – in 2017. Encouraged by the response to the first edition, the second edition garnered greater institutional support from the Mizoram University Incubation Centre, TATA Trusts, North Eastern Development Finance Corporation Ltd. (NEDFi) and Software Technology Parks of India (STPI).

Meanwhile, the Government of Assam pioneered a new chapter by giving a definite structure to the roadmap for the development of a startup ecosystem in the state. The Assam Startup Policy 2017 formulated by the Industries, Commerce and Public Relations Department, Govt. of Assam, made way for the launch of Northeast India’s first state-owned marquee startup incubator, Assam startup – the nest, in January 2019, with IIM Calcutta Innovation Park picking up the baton to drive the initiative. Assam already had reputed institutions like the Technology Incubation Centre at IIT Guwahati and Indian Institute of Entrepreneurship (under the Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship), making its impact felt among innovators, startups and MSMEs. The Assam Startup initiative has tried to bring cohesiveness among the stakeholders – including innovators, entrepreneurs, incubators, academia, corporates, industrialists, HNIs and investors – and establish symbiotic relationships towards building a nurturing ecosystem. This collaborative approach, along with startup-friendly schemes and policies by the central and state governments, have resulted in the opening up of a wide window for internationally acclaimed corporate houses and VC companies to learn and explore the startup potential of the region. For instance, IT giant, CISCO collaborated with Assam Startup in 2021 to launch the India Technopreneurship Series (an initiative under Cisco LaunchPad Accelerator Program), making Assam the second state only after Kerala to be introduced to the series. Further, VC companies and angel networks like Omnivore and Mumbai Angels Network have already invested in the startups from this part of the world. In fact, 56 startups incubated by Assam Startup have raised funds worth Rs. 32 crores. This could well be the result of the rising confidence and the newfound business savviness of the startups by dint of the capacity building programs, investment-readiness training and the exposure that they have received under the initiative.

Meghalaya has been the talk of the nation since its recognition as the Best Performer in the States’ Startup Ranking 2021. The state has exhibited phenomenal enthusiasm and progress in the entrepreneurship space ever since the launch of the state initiative, PRIME Meghalaya, under the towering leadership of Hon’ble Chief Minister of Meghalaya, Conrad K. Sangma, in January 2020. The two dedicated incubation centres under the initiative, each at Shillong and Tura, are managed in collaboration with IIM Calcutta Innovation Park as the Knowledge Partner. Playing to the strength of the state, the initiative has made a conscious choice to lend due importance to promoting startups with rural or grassroots impact in Meghalaya. Apart from running the incubation program, the initiative has made phenomenal advances in sparking entrepreneurial aspirations in the students as well as capacitating the ecosystem enablers through various sensitization workshops.

Further, the startup investments have witnessed a conspicuous surge lately. NEDFi has been at the forefront in making investments in the startups from NER. Its subsidiary venture capital firm, NEDFi Venture Capital Ltd., has made 20 investments and is continuously on a lookout for investible startups from the region. The North East Venture Fund, a dedicated venture capital fund for NER, and promoted by NEDFi, Ministry of DoNER and SIDBI, has recently announced the launch of Startup Investment Fest 2022. The Fest aims to reach out to and invest in scalable startups from NER having innovative products/services backed by technology. PSUs like Oil India, NRL and IOC have earmarked seed corpus to support the emerging startups from Northeast. The state governments in Assam, Meghalaya and Arunachal Pradesh have reserved seed corpus that are awarded to the promising startups under the respective state initiatives. Besides, the startups now have access to the funding and handholding schemes by different departments of the central government as well the corporate, which are channelized through various registered incubators. The Startup India Seed Fund Scheme, MeitY TIDE EiR and Grant, DST NIDHI EiR, STPI Chunauti, DST NIDHI-PRAYAAS, BIRAC SPARSH Fellowship, MeitY SAMRIDH, DST NIDHI Pragati and Pernod Ricard India Foundation’s Women Entrepreneur’s program are such initiatives to mention a few.

The startup buzzword has surely started reverberating across the region. If the newfound momentum manages to carry itself without a pause, there isn’t anything stopping Northeastern region from growing into a startup hub the nation would recognize as a force to reckon with.

Author: Satarupa Misra


Evolving Entrepreneurial Spirit

Cultivating a mindset of entrepreneurship reorients your approach towards how you live your life. Creating jobs instead seeking one could make you a more action oriented and an innovative person. As government cannot provide employment to all, it becomes imperative that the private sector and the start-ups fill this gap by creating new job opportunities in various sectors across the nation. This latest resurgence in the new start-up ecosystem has given job seekers high salaries with other excellent incentives and a conducive atmosphere where one can come up with any unique ideas and unconventional ways of doing business. Start-ups focus on any specific problem in the market place and try fixing them by creating services or manufacturing products catering to their superniche target group.

However, the private sector could thrive and could generate more job opportunities only if the government and its policies are supportive. And thankfully, the government has been really supportive of the start-up ecosystem in the recent years. Various state governments are encouraging new entrepreneurs to launch and they are helping them to do so with ease. Government schemes such as ASPIRE ( A scheme for Promotion of Innovation, Rural Industries and Entrepreneurship) and ‘MUDRA’ (Mirco-Units Development and Refinance Agency) have made entrepreneurs life easy by initiating the creation of a start-up ecosystem that promotes innovation and new ideas.

In Assam, we could see today an entrepreneurial atmosphere with several proactive initiatives by Govt. of Assam. It is noteworthy to mention Assam Start-Up –The Nest, which is Assam’s first state owned incubator located in Guwahati. As a start-up incubator, Assam Start-up—The Nest helps the start-ups shape their entrepreneurial mindset so as to navigate through the dynamics of the market. The selected start-up entities are incubated at the NEST, they go through intense mentoring and capacity building training, get access to co-working space, get the opportunity to meet the investors etc.

We have brought in this issue an exclusive story on how the different initiatives under start-up India has been able to not only support the entrepreneurs from Northeast India but also has been effective in motivating the youths to ideate, create and contribute to the society as job creators.

Author: Bijoy Ghimire


Five points One must not ignore while choosing partners for your start-up

“Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.”-Helen Keller

The journey of entrepreneurship is not always a smooth one. It could be like a roller-coaster ride, full of uncertainties and at the same time exciting. The journey becomes even more exciting and fulfilling when you get the right partners. That is when you achieve extraordinary results, and the journey becomes fun.

Getting the right partner for your start-up venture is not an easy task, and you need to be tenacious, patient, flexible, and prudent. I have gone through these experiences, and my struggle to find the right partner for business was a long one.

This is so crucial because it can make or break start-up ideas. The success of any start-up will hinge upon how the partners create bonding and complement each other during the initial phases. When inventors bet their money on a start-up, they assess how resilient and coherent would be the team behind the ideas. Great ideas alone do not ensure great enterprises; people’s ability to execute ideas would be pivotal for success. Investors are smart people to understand that.

But, it is not only crucial from the fundraising point of view. This is important at a fundamental level; this will decide whether the venture will be viable or not and will the promoters be able to pull it through together or not.

How do you select great partners?

How do you create a great team? Here are a few guidelines:

1. Select someone who shares the similar dreams

Partners must have shared dreams; they must share similar excitement and commitment to the ideas. If some partners are gung-ho about the ideas and generate a lot of energy around them, the others are lackadaisical; then there would be constant dissonance. All partners must own up to the ideas and be excited about them.

2. Value-systems alignment:

The partners must share similar values regarding the business. The culture of the start-up would emanate from the shared value systems of the partners. Significant time will be wasted ironing out the differences if conflicting values exist. If the differences are irreconcilable, they may even take to a breaking point. I am sure nobody would like to have a business partner who is not trustworthy, open, flexible, and transparent.

3. Commitment Level:

If multiple partners have equal stakes, the commitment level must be uniform. Suppose one or two partners are engaged full-time whereas the other partners cannot commit 100%, there could be problems again. It will impact the performance and also may create a rift among partners.

4. Complementary Skills:

During the initial phase, when a start-up is not in a position to hire many talents, it always helps if the promoters bring complementary skills. If someone is good at product development and another at marketing and sales, that makes a formidable team. Another advantage of having complementary skills among partners is that they can divide the workload and avoid duplication of efforts, thus effectively utilizing the promoter’s bandwidth and avoiding possible conflicts.

5. Likeability Vs. Competence

Birds with the same feather flock together. We feel comfortable hanging around people we like and trying to avoid people we do not like. It is not always true that a likable person will be efficient. When you are in a business venture, you need people who can deliver results. As long as the value systems match, even if the nature and style of another person are different, things may work out beautifully. For example, if you are an outgoing, aggressive person and your partner is an introverted and cautious person,  that may bring a balance and a sense of proportion to the approaches. There is a strong belief that diversity brings different perspectives, even though you may have to spend a little more time building up consensus. However, if you encounter somebody you cannot withstand, you may decide not to onboard him even if he is supremely efficient. One must be careful to strike a balance.

Young entrepreneurs who are excited with the ideas and raring to go may often overlook these aspects of business selecting partners or building teams. Ideas do not work themselves; people make them work. The team behind the idea must work as one team, chasing the same goals. Creating the rule of engagement and boundaries would smoothen out many interpersonal issues like ego, power struggles, etc. Selecting the right partner is the first right thing in building a winning team and successful enterprise.

Author: Mukul K. Das