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Entrepreneurship

  • Get inked - via temporary tattoos

    I had the opportunity to talk about temporary tattoos and drew a comparison between temporary tattoos and permanent tattoos:

    - While permanent tattoos appeal to those who don't mind getting poked with needles for having a beautiful design on their body, temporary ones are for those who want a tattoo without going through the painful process

    - Hygiene can be a big concern when it comes to a permanent tattoo. But one can truly experiment without the risk of infection with a temporary tattoo.

    - Permanent tattoos are generally for life, whereas temporary ones offer flexibility. One can try on as many designs as one wants to.

    - One can also be more adventurous with temporary tattoos compared to permanent tattoos. Just think of any occasion or range -- cool, funky, wild or childish -- and you can have your tattoo; because they are temporary, so there is no risk of being stuck with an experimental permanent tattoo.

    - It takes a lot of time to get a permanent tattoo, whereas a temporary one can be applied within a minute.

    - Permanent tattoos are much more expensive than temporary ones.

    Cool & funky robot tattoos Cool & funky robot tattoos
    Here are the media coverage
    1. http://www.business-standard.com/article/news-ians/get-inked-but-only-temporarily-115013000845_1.html
    2. http://www.ibn7.com/india/item/84962-get-inked-but-only-temporarily
    3. https://in.celebrity.yahoo.com/news/inked-only-temporarily-112208503.html
    4. http://zeenews.india.com/entertainment/and-more/get-inked-but-only-temporarily_1538957.html
    5. http://chennaionline.com/City360/Life-Style/20155830055830/Get-inked---but-only-temporarily.col
    6. http://www.mizonews.net/lifestyle-2/get-inked-but-only-temporarily/
    7. http://newsreporter.in/get-inked---but-only-temporarily-572807
    8. http://www.newswala.com/India-National-News/get-inked-but-only-temporarily-131320.html
    9. http://www.tellmeboss.com/newscontent.php?id=218194&subcategory_id=1&title=Get%20inked%20-%20but%20only%20temporarily
    10. http://www.filmicafe.co/news/get-inked--but-only-temporarily
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  • Gumtoo in Kids India trade fair

    India is the land of surprises, even for an Indian. Kids India was Gumtoo’s second professional B2B trade fair in Asia. It took us a while to understand that trade fairs (the good ones) are the best place to meet new distributors/ retailers in a market, but on retrospect we think it is also essential that a company should reach a stage of maturity in terms of its product development before any trade fair can truly generate meaningful business leads.

    Bombay Convention & Exhibition Centre (BCEC) Bombay Convention & Exhibition Centre (BCEC)

    We flew into Mumbai on 17th September the day before the fair opens its door to visitors and first surprise began when we reached Bombay Convention & Exhibition Centre at 1400 Hrs to take ownership of our booth to set it up with our display. The place was a kaleidoscope of workers, wood, display pieces, dust and chaos. Well, we knew India generally pulls off the last minute transformation (the great Indian wedding syndrome), but we truly believed its mission impossible to get the place ready in time for the start of the trade fair on 18th Sep 10am. But slowly but steadily the work progressed and by 6 pm we were hopeful that they might just pull it off. And they did in spectacular manner!

    Gumtoo booth  at Kids India trade fair Gumtoo booth at Kids India trade fair

    The next surprise was witnessing the flexibility in the Indian project management system. Well, we had asked for wooden display stands in our booth and the lighting in the booth did not actually suit the product display on them. So we gently inquired if we can replace the wooden stands with glass ones? The display contractor shook his head (which actually is a yes) and it was done in a whisker.  We were happily surprised with the ease of getting through this last minute change request!

    Professional trade fair was organized by Spielwarenmesse eG Professional trade fair was organized by Spielwarenmesse eG

    The morning of 18th Sept was when we were surprised to see the complete transformation of the venue. It was unbelievable; no one could have imagined what the place looked like a day earlier! The trade fair was a very successful one for Gumtoo. We were pleasantly surprised to get lots of footprints in our booth and we practically interacted with potential retailers, distributors and collaborators through out the trade fair without a break!

    Kids India trade fair Talking to retail prospects in Kids India trade fair.

    Kids India 2014 was organized by Spielwarenmesse eG, who are one of the most professional and experienced trade fair organizers in the world. In our conversation with them, we understood that they also have accepted “The Indian Way”. All in all, it was a memorable experience and we would love to visit Kids India again sometime in Future!

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  • Most frequently asked questions by Gumtoo retailers

    I frequently meet retailers and distributors and they ask me very good questions - about the product, quality, pricing etc. Some of the questions are similar so I thought why not put them together for everyone to read.

    Q1. Where do you see Gumtoo in next 1-2 years?

    We started Gumtoo with a vision to create great designs and make those designs affordable. Creating a good product is the small part of the running any business. But the most important is to listen to your consumers and try new things based on the insights. At Gumtoo we listen to what consumer say and implement them fast.

    To quote few examples

    One tattoo Vs Two tattoos in a pack - In retail shops, we started by selling 2 tattoos of the same design in 1 single pack. But, we realized why would anyone need 2 designs in 1 pack. We pivoted and changed the packaging. Now we sell 1 tattoo in 1 pack and are pleased with the result.

    Greedy Box - Kids love temporary tattoos and few of them want more tattoos and care less about designs. You give these kids 10 tattoos and within minutes you will find all of them on their body. We recently got this consumer insight and came up with the concept of Greedy Box. Kids get 20 random tattoos at $10. Well that’s a great price point parents.

    Wait for more crazy options to be launched in the first quarter of 2014.

    We aim to change the way temporary tattoos are sold and consumed around the world.

    Gumtoo temporary tattoos pegboard in retail stores

    Q2. Do you change pricing for the country you retail in or its a standard price in all the countries?

    Consumer is at the heart of everything we do at Gumtoo. The first question we ask before we launch Gumtoo into any country - what is consumer willing to pay? We take the inputs from our distributors and also test the pricing in 4-5 shops before the big launch.

    For example

    In Singapore, based on initial testing we modified the pricing for singles - SG$$3  (US$2.25) for a single tattoo and SG$10 (US$8) for 4 tattoos. Consumers love this pricing.

    In South African market, we produce the packaging locally to make the price point suitable for the consumer.

    Gumtoo temporary tattoos desktop retail stands display  in stores

    Q3. What help do you provide retailers to sell Gumtoos effectively in their shops?

    We strongly believe that the retailers experience with Gumtoo should be great starting from buying from us and selling Gumtoo in their stores.

    We offer marketing collaterals, gumtoo branded desktop stands and gumtoo branded pegboard displays as a standard kit. In some scenarios we have offered customised collaterals.

    We want to make this as simple as possible for the retailers and impactful for the consumer. In one of the retail shops the sales person told me  - "Gumtoo Tattoo Man marketing collateral has attracted passing by people to our shop. People were inqusitie and asken many questions." Apparently it increased the sales of other products their shop.

    Q4. You sell Gumtoo tattoos at gumtoo.com. Would  it cannibalise sales in the retail shops you sell?

    We believe that temporary tattoos is an impulse buy and sales move much faster when you see them in a store. Having said that, we try not to cannibalise sales retailers sale. For that reason

    • We do not offer regular discounts on our website

    • New designs of established products are launched in the stores first and then launched at www.gumtoo.com i.e. after 1-2 months

    • In few countries we keep the price lower in stores in comparison to price at gumtoo.com

    I will add more questions to this post in the coming few months. However if you have more questions, mail me at pt@gumtoo.com and I would love to answer them.

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  • social networks for startups

    All companies need to advertise and promote their products. The general fear of being the best kept secret in the industry is what should keep any startup to keep looking at channels to broadcast their existence.  Now, as a startup company when your cashflow is low, the no. of resourceful people you know is not very high and basically your awareness of various channels is limited, what do you do? You begin your social networks dilema!

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/danfogel/ Social networks for startups - too many choices
    Attribution - http://www.flickr.com/photos/danfogel/

    So you open your account in Facebook & Twitter. A few weeks (or months) later, you join Pinterest, Instagram & Tumblr. As time passes, you seek refuge in LinkedIn. In between, you have forgotten that you had also signed up for Flickr. Last but not the least you open your channel in YouTube. Actually the only notable thing I missed out is Google+, that was because you thought and did a lot of research but could not make up your mind in terms of what exactly additional power does it bring to your previously assembled platoon of social media platforms. Generally speaking this was the chronological order when Gumtoo opened its account with these platforms. And trust me, the list is still incomplete and right now we are in the trial period of HootSuite (no surprise!) and flirting with other channels of content marketing, promotion and advertising such as PR.comSocialSpark, Bloglovin' and  Project Wonderful.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/mithril/ Social networks - are they all the same or they are unique?
    Attribution -http://www.flickr.com/photos/mithril/

    Now, dont take the note of humour in my previous paragraph in anyways a testament of my disbelief in the power of these social networks platforms, as when they did not exist, then what exactly did a small startup had in terms of letting the world know that they not only exist but also have a strong aspiration to kick some serious ass in their industry segment with very little cash in their bank accounts?

    What we want to talk about in this category of blogs is in fact our learnings as a startup company who totally accept the power of social networks for startups, wants to use them but is not overawed by them. So basically, we will tell the good, the bad and the stupid things that we see in this sphere. Basically, all opinions will be based upon the below disclaimer

    "We consider ourselves as decently smart, aware and humble entrepreneurs, the kind of people who are not outliers in the bell curve in any way. If we misunderstood any feature and wrote something that is not entirely what its intentions were, then the platform, product or service provider should work on better educating its users"

    By Gumtoo

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  • What is your worst case scenario?

    People often ask me, what if Gumtoo does not work, what’s your worst-case scenario? I always tell them, there isn’t worst-case scenario. There is only best-case scenario and this is why

    1. - When you will be working on excel making monthly reports, I will be evaluating Google Analytics to track how my customers behave and tweak my business to satisfy their needs
    2. - When you will be spending time doing annual appraisals, I will be brainstorming on the next big idea
    3. - And most importantly I am living my dream. 20 years down the line I do not want the haunting thought “I wish I had started my company”

    So, I do not understand where is the worst-case scenario.

    Tornado2

    Before I left the job, many of my friends told me, hey why don't you take one year sabbatical from your job? Frankly, I was tempted, but decided not to take it. Here is my reason, if I take a sabbatical and Gumtoo is not making revenues as I expect after 8 months, I will start thinking of going back to corporate world and for rest of my 4 months I  would be winding up mind set.

    I never wanted to give myself that option. I rather fight it all-in.

    If you are a half gangster (You can't be a half Entrepreneur - Jay Bhatti) , you will definitely be killed. Rather get killed as a full gangster, at least it will be satisfying :)

    Author: Pranjal Taneja

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