Preeti Markan is a Delhi Based entrepreneur and the Founder and CEO of ZingyHomes
Prior to starting her own startups, she worked in Sales, Marketing & Business Development of FMCGs, Pharma, Software and Industrial Products for over 7 years. Preeti loves adventure and thinks her entrepreneurial-self is, to some extent, the manifestation of her adventurous-self.
Let’s Go through her journey and how she made it to become South Asia’s Largest Design Community.
Firstly, can you please tell us a bit about yourself and Where the things started and What motivated you to become an entrepreneur ?
Well, I started my entrepreneurial journey a long time back, so am pretty much a seasoned entrepreneur now. My earlier stints though were in so called traditional industries.
As far back as I can remember, I have had this deep underlying need to build things from scratch, not to be mistaken with reinventing the wheels though 🙂
What is ZingyHomes all about? Which customer pain you are solving and How ?
ZingyHomes.com is an online community marketplace for anyone looking to design or build a space. Your space can be a home, office, shop – anything. We help people find & consult the right professionals, specifically architects, interior designers, contractors and consultants.
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We make it easy for them to find & buy luxury interior products as well as building materials.
On ZingyHomes.com, we have professional members showcasing their projects and setting up detailed profiles giving the end users a good insight into the suitability of the professional to their own project.
If the end user finds a pro to be a probable fit, they send detailed consultation requests via the Request Consultation form, post which they connect offline and finalize the terms.
Home owners and other end users can view the range of products available, their specifications, prices, find out the sources/stores and buy from them. Interior products can be bought online as well.
What was the first thing you did to get the word out about your startup and how did you measure the effectiveness of this?
During the early days, we reached out aggressively to the design fraternity and before we launched we had 250 projects already submitted to ZingyHomes.com for showcasing. We found it more relevant to focus on our target users and direct all our communication to them.
There are plenty of others who would rather get their venture talked about on startup sites first to build up the initial traction.
Different things work for different people. Our TA does not hang around on the startup PR sites. So our best bet was to be present where they are. We worked hard on developing a product they would love to use and build a place where they would want to hang around. While we did have a road map we started with, every feature today has evolved out of the needs expressed by our members and users.
What’s the hardest decision you’ve made so far?
As an entrepreneur, you are often faced with difficult situations and have to make hard decisions. Soon you begin to lose count 🙂
What mistakes have you made thus far in this business and what have you learned?
Life is full of mistakes and so is an entrepreneurial journey. We are continually learning and mistakes happen all the time. Listing them all would be akin to writing a book!
As a founder, what do believe to be the end goal for this startup?
When someone thinks of architecture, design or construction, we want them to think ZingyHomes.com
What helps you when you doubt yourself?
Well, I am not sure what is meant by doubting oneself. There may be issues with our approach, process, concept at times which may need validating, sorting and fixing.
There may be times when you need more data or more opinions to verify your thoughts about a situation in which case one would try and get that data or feedback.
Doubting “oneself” can be detrimental though.
Finally, would you have any inspirational tips for aspiring entrepreneurs about to kickstart their startup dream?
Startup only when you are sure of your passion. Ideas may change. Concepts may change. Models may change. Industry may change. Business climate may change.
But if you are driven and passionate and want to make it work no matter what comes your way, you will eventually do.
What does it take to start an online business nowadays? A unique innovative idea? Know-how? Long working hours? People? What is your recipe?
All of what you mention, along with market readiness are more or less accepted ingredients for a start up. That said, today, more than ever in the past, stereotypes and formulae for success are breaking down fast. So, let no holds be barred 🙂
Last question for everyone – Before we let you go, where can we find you online?
I am not much of a social junkie but you can find me at twitter.com/pmarkan and linkedin.com/in/pmarkan
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