UrbanClap has been helping consumers across the country to avail reliable home-services at their doorstep. Founded in October 2014, this promising startup has scaled to newer heights over the past two years; today, it claims to be one of India’s largest services marketplace, functioning full-swing in Delhi, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Chennai and Pune. Manu Gupt, VP Marketing of UrbanClap talks to us about his role in the ecosystem, early marketing hacks and more.
How does a usual day in your life look like?
The growth team at UrbanClap comprises of an interesting potpourri of creative minds, content experts, number-crunchers and techies. My usual day revolves around working with the business team so as to solve blockers; we also work closely to executing newer, exciting ideas every day.
How would you describe VP marketing’s ideal role in a startup ecosystem?
Franky, I feel marketing has no role in consumer internet startups. It is always about growing and delicately balancing demand and supply at each stage of growth. As an owner of this function, knowing and championing customer interest, focusing on justified economics while sustaining growth, enabling team to create a seamless engine of innovation, and learning and scaling are broad contours of the role.
Recalling early years, what marketing strategies did you employ to get your first 1000 customers?
Personal connects, asking existing customers to spread the word, and personal direct on-ground selling helped us in the initial growth stage.
How important is digital marketing? What digital marketing channels has worked best for UrbanClap?
Users are spending more time on the internet for information discovery than any other medium now. Digital is a must for internet businesses. We are a mobile-first platform for lifestyle-related local services; for us social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram, and Google Search has worked best.
Tell us about one of UrbanClap’s quirkiest/or most unique marketing campaign that has worked wonders for the brand.
We are the trusted local guy for our customers. Sharing their local problems and partnering in their happiness is core to our DNA. When there was water shortage in Mumbai and Pune, by launching water leakage repair, we got a lot of support from local communities. Similarly, we got huge support for free pest control post catastrophic Chennai floods.
On Diwali, we offered lighting decoration, and on Christmas we provided Christmas tree with decoration. Staying true to our passion of serving the local community has always worked for us.
What do you feel about the growing power of new-age content marketing?
Mobile-first ecosystem has disproportionate reliance on socially recommended discovery of brand through content. Having relatable, contextual and value-adding content put out in an engaging way is the secret sauce. Having said that, we are still learning every day to be better at this, it is always a work-in-progress.