Most Bihar educated youth tend to migrate to metropolitan cities in India or abroad to find better opportunities to explore and work after completing their studies. This has led to further brain drain, leaving little brain power in the state.
Himani Mishra saw and felt that when she had been working in companies like Wipro, Tata Teleservices and Telenor during his career in Kolkata and Bengaluru. Also, from time to time, people casually told him that she doesn’t look like someone from Bihar.
Armed with an interest in analytics and technology, this led IIIT Kalyani, a West Bengal graduate to establish a digital marketing startup, Brand Radiator, in 2018. Based in Patna, the startup takes advantage of the digital marketing and advertising industry that is It valued around Rs 160 billion in FY 2019. Himani believes that digitization is the way to go, especially after COVID-19. Facebook has reported a 70 percent increase in its app family usage since the outbreak.
Growing up in a family of three daughters in Patna, Himani shares that the conservative mindset in society, where having a girl was considered taboo at the time, was especially difficult for her parents. However, her father, a retired university professor, made sure not to compromise his daughters’ education.
Himani went from preparing for medical exams to passing the AIEEE exam. Now explore the fields of business, consumer insight, and product analysis and launch. However, digital marketing, she says, is an amalgam of science, math, and the arts that goes far beyond making multiple posts on social media sites.
Brand Radiator currently offers services in areas of digital marketing aspects such as search engine optimization (SEO), search engine marketing (SEM); IT related services such as web and application development; and brand and public relations related services as well. Operating in a B2B model, it currently serves more than 35 clients, with a price starting at Rs 30,000 and Rs 35,000 for each client and increasing according to their requirements. Himani says the startup does not resort to a “one size fits all” approach.
The startup claims that its industry-relevant insight and ROI-driven service for clients sets it apart from other competitors. While many organizations are cutting costs and cutting advertising spending, the startup has managed to attract new clients looking to increase its digital presence. Some of his current clients include the IT Department, Bihar; State Health Society under the Department of Health, Bihar; UNICEF; International Institute for Safety and Security Management (IISSM); Indian Industry Confederation (IIC); Hindusthan Samachar; Harilal’s; Aditya Vision; Generic Plus, Patna Women’s College; and Mahindra Rise, among others.
Bootstrapped so far, the startup became positive EBIDTA within five months of launch. However, the Founder has declined to comment on the startup’s billing. As an entrepreneur, Himani’s work was recognized among 50 innovative leaders this year by ET Now and received the Digital Women Awards in 2018.
Challenges and lessons
Himani says being a woman in a technology-based business has been a challenge because most people are only used to the idea of a women’s business only in terms of opening a boutique or beauty salon.
To challenge such stereotypes, the entrepreneur makes sure to present statistics and share technological and business views. She says: “There is still a mentality that if there is a woman who talks about business, she will not speak in terms of numbers or growth.” I turn the table around doing my homework even better and I pronounce numbers in terms of business, growth and competition. ”
Recruitment has been another obstacle in Bihar due to its slow approach to adopt modern technology education. Himani shares that at a time when the world is working with Python, artificial intelligence, and machine learning, she encountered many candidates in Bihar who still cling to C ++ software.
That said, we are looking for more people who have the enthusiasm to learn and grow. My only mantra has been spending and investing in labor rather than luxurious infrastructure. Times have changed and I urge my team to learn various skills online and they don’t need to pursue institutional titles. Today, I think you have to be a teacher of few trades and be the best of all trades, “she adds. It also encourages them to monitor developments in the industry and the changes that tech giants like Facebook, Google and Twitter are embracing.
For most entrepreneurs in Bihar, the main obstacle, rather than external forces, is the mindset and the unwillingness to see change. In summary, Himani says that she has learned that an entrepreneur must be ready to put on all the hats, the one from “Peon to the CEO of the company”.