Digital marketing, as the name suggests is carried all across many marketing roles in today’s day & age. In very small companies, one generalist might be owning many of the digital marketing tactics described elaborately but in larger companies, these methods have multiple specialists that each focus on just one or two of the brand’s digital channels.
Digital marketers are totally in charge of driving brand awareness and lead generation through all the digital means & channels. Naming few of these channels include social media, the company’s own website, search engine rankings, email, display advertising, and the company’s blog.
In the same breath elaborating more on the digital space, without any hesitation one can take the name of Digital Vidya. The venture is particularly focused on imparting digital media knowledge to educational institutions & students across geographies. Lets have a look at the interview of Pradeep Chopra to understand what digital vidya is offering.
1. What is the Name of Your Venture? Any specific reason for this name?
Pradeep Chopra: The name of our venture is Digital Vidya. Till 2009, we were supporting other entrepreneurs and professionals informally by just sharing our digital marketing experience with them. Then, after getting a suggestion from a friend, we started sharing all our experience & knowledge formally, which we thought is the need of the hour.
Since Digital Vidya’s main motive is to impart knowledge on Digital Marketing & Data Science, we thought of naming it as “Digital Vidya”. Vidya is Hindi means knowledge and so it complemented the vision perfectly.
2. Who is your target Audience/clients?
Pradeep Chopra: Since we at Digital Vidya focus on providing comprehensive digital marketing & data science educational training to students and educational institutions. Thus, the majority of our clients are students.
Moreover, we also offer customized Digital Marketing and Analytics Training Program for corporations to scale up their businesses. So, our next set of clients are the professional corporations who want to learn digital marketing to elevate their business.
3. Where is your venture based (city, state, country) & What are your geographical target areas?
Pradeep Chopra: Digital Vidya is primarily based out of New Delhi (India) but has a Global presence. People from 55+ countries have utilized our services.
4. What problems does your venture resolve? What are your products or services?
Pradeep Chopra: Digital Vidya is laser-focused on bridging the gap between the demand and supply of skilled digital marketing & data science professionals. The demand for skilled professionals is rising immensely and taking this thought into consideration, we formulated a plan of imparting knowledge that is specific to skills in demand.
We majorly focus on providing Digital Marketing & Data Science training to students, professionals and even educational institutions. We provide Digital Marketing Certification Course, Specialized Digital Marketing Courses, Data Analytics Certification Courses & Data Science Courses. Apart from these we also provide corporate & educational training to various corporate companies and educational institutions.
5. Share the idea or story behind the venture. How did it come to existence? What motivated you to start your own venture?
Pradeep Chopra: Till the year 2009, we were sharing our digital marketing experience with other professionals and entrepreneurs informally and helping them make their way towards it. Soon after that, a friend suggested that we should convert this informal process into a formal one. Understanding the need of the industry and taking this opportunity, Digital Vidya came into existence. There were mainly two main reasons that motivated us to start our own venture. One, we were highly passionate about providing digital marketing training and helping people to grow. Second, being one of the few companies to formally offer digital marketing education in India acted as a foundational support in building Digital Vidya.
6. Who are your biggest competitors and how do you differentiate yourself from them?
Pradeep Chopra: In the global market, your competitors are not limited. What differentiates us from the many online education providers is the quality of our content along with a transparent approach. It has been our mantra to commit, only that which we can fulfil.
We have an in-depth curriculum for all our courses and we rely on hands-on learning.
What is the biggest challenge you have faced so far and what was the strategy to deal with it? Ans: One of the biggest challenges for us is to educate our audience about why they need to educate themselves on Digital Marketing. Given the lower entry barrier in this industry, most of the people feel that they either know it well or will be able to become an expert in a few days.
7. How did you identify your co-founder? Tell us something about your co-founder/s
Pradeep Chopra: There is no special manner in which I identified Kapil Nakra to be my partner. We had the same idea but different skill sets, so it clicked.
Kapil Nakra is a first generation Serial Entrepreneur. Kapil has co-founded 3 companies in the last 17 years. In his recent engagement, he takes care of Product and Delivery at Digital Vidya, the company he started in 2009. Digital Vidya is a leading Digital Marketing and Data Analytics Training Company. As a pioneer of Digital Marketing in India, Kapil has grown along with the Internet Industry as a User, a Service Provider and now as an Educator. He started his entrepreneurial journey in 2000 when he started his 1st venture, Whizlabs Software. At Whizlabs, he pioneered the efforts in building an online market for Whizlabs’ assessment solutions for enterprises and helped Whizlabs acquire over 100 Enterprise Customers including blue-chip accounts such as Cisco purely using Digital Marketing. Whizlabs won the ‘Most Innovative Indian IT Company’ award from NASSCOM in 2004. Kapil is known for his simplistic and inquisitive leading style, which motivates people to think out-of-the-box. It goes without that saying that Kapil has a deep passion for Entrepreneurship and Digital Marketing.
8. How did you hire your first team members? What skills do you want in your employees/team?
Pradeep Chopra: Digital Vidya Team is like a family. We look for people who are transparent, willing to learn and ones who can help us in our journey to delight the customers.
9. What expansion plans are you looking for the next 2 years, next 5 years?
Pradeep Chopra: We are going to start Job Guaranteed Courses and increase our Market Share by 200% in the next two years. We are already working with Facebook to help small-scale business to go digital. The COO of Facebook, Sheryl Sandberg, has personally endorsed the work we are doing with them on her Facebook Page.
What are your future plans? Ans: We would like to continue our leadership position in India and expand to other geographies in the immediate future. Moreover, we would like to make our programs available to the newer audience in India.
10. What were the problems you faced during the starting days and how did you resolve them? What was the most challenging part of your journey till now? How did you overcome those challenges?
Pradeep Chopra: As a user of digital marketing since last 17 years and as an enabler of digital marketing since last 9 years, I have observed the following key challenges faced by companies across industries:
Finding Talent: Given this industry is still evolving, finding right talent is one of the most difficult tasks.
Finding Agency Partner: The entry barrier to form an agency is too low. Moreover, organizations don’t have sufficient understanding of what to expect/not from agencies. Finally, working with agencies as a vendor (vs partner) is another reason for significantly higher failure rates.
Adapting to the Changes: Digital marketing is one of the most dynamic industries. For traditional organizations, it’s hard to unlearn and do fast experimentations, which are essential for success in digital marketing
Using measurability to its advantage: While measurability is one of the key advantages of digital marketing, yet it’s not used to its advantage. Even today, how to measure the ROI of digital marketing is an unsolved puzzle for a large number of organizations.
11. Whom do you consider your idol or biggest motivator?
Pradeep Chopra: We are the consumers of what we teach. And if we are not then we don’t deserve to be a Digital Marketing education business. While the focus and distribution could vary and change based on the changes in the industry, we actively use SEO, SEM, SMM, Inbound and Email Marketing.
12. If you had the chance to start your career over again, what would you do differently?
Pradeep Chopra: Our past, present and future growth are based on our ability to continuously improve our efforts in leveraging various opportunities in Digital Marketing. We are always looking for newer opportunities based on the regular changes in Digital Media.
13. Anything, you would like to say to our readers or upcoming entrepreneurs?
Pradeep Chopra: Thanks to the growth of the Internet and our large population, Digital Marketing is exploding in India. Given we just have 300M online users so far, the future growth is also ensured in India. If Digital Marketing were not available to startups, we would not have seen multi-billion dollar startups such as Flipkart, Snapdeal emerging from India. So, digital is the place you should be at.
Considering the pace at which Digital Marketing moves and the stakes involved, it’s a multi-billion dollar question. At a top level, with the growing internet population in India, the importance of Digital Marketing will become even stronger for all kinds of organizations. It’s evident, looking at the digital media spend projections by various sources. For e.g., according to a recent study by ASSOCHAM-KPMG, digital media spend in India will cross Rs 13,000 Crores by 2018. This will continue to fuel the demand for skilled professionals and create new jobs in the industry. As in the past, we will continue to see the emergence of newer digital media channels, especially for Mobile. With the growing adoption of smartphones and increasing internet speeds, rich media such as videos will dominate in terms of consumption of content. As we spend more time, engage deeper and share more details about us, digital media will be able to offer even better-targeting capabilities.
14. What is your USP which makes it unique & different from other start-ups in similar domains?
Pradeep Chopra: We are the consumers of what we teach. And if we are not then we don’t deserve to be a Digital Marketing education business. While the focus and distribution could vary and change based on the changes in the industry, we actively use SEO, SEM, SMM, Inbound and Email Marketing. For e.g., in the initial years of Digital Vidya, we used to make a significant effort in leveraging our Facebook Page. Given the negligible organic reach of Facebook Page today, we’ve proportionally reduced our efforts and expectations. The same is also reflected in the curriculum of our Digital Marketing Certification Course (CDMM). We used to dedicate 3/4th of a day on teaching Community Building on Facebook out of 2 days of our Social Media Marketing course. One common thread across all our marketing initiatives is to leverage educational (vs. promotional) content such as Blog & Webinar. It is in line with our efforts to strengthen our leadership position in the digital marketing education domain.