Social Media has become THE channel through which we communicate on a wide range of activities so it is the next logical step that companies should look to the channels of social media for hiring. HireRabbit takes this leap and allows companies to build a social career page on a wide variety of channels to connect businesses with potential employees. The venture was founded by Prafull Sharma and Pipalayan Nayak in 2012, we chat with Prafull about the business. An Excerpt from the Interview:
- What made you start your venture?
I have a background in SaaS and recruiting. I have worked with product development companies including Sterling Commerce and IBM Software Labs. Before founding HireRabbit, I had successfully built and launched BiggerRole.com, a platform to connect SMBs and startups with enthusiastic interns in India. Along with my co-founder Piplayan Nayak, I grew BiggerRole from an idea to a community of students from more than 500 universities across India and 200 SMBs within six months of the launch. While we were working on BiggerRole, we came up with the idea for HireRabbit. We realized that social media would have a profound impact on the recruitment landscape and there was a dire need for best-in-class tools for companies to utilize this opportunity.
- What has been the key to your business’s success?
The most crucial success factor is to have a solid plan for how you are going to add value to your customers. This is important for all businesses, but much more so in the world of recruiting, where you’ll be competing with legions of other established players and “me too” companies carrying similar products. Another important factor is to understand the fact that – if everyone is your customer, then no one is. Almost every successful business we has one thing in common: It specializes in a certain product or niche. The more that business specializes, the more successful they tend to be. Many think narrowing their focus limits their potential customer base and will cost them sales. Just the opposite is true! Specializing allows us to communicate more effectively with your customers, stand out more easily from the competition and compete against a smaller field.
- What are the major challenges in your line of business and how did/do you overcome them?
Our biggest challenge was to reach out to the HR decision makers in western markets and convert them into paying customers. We have tackled this with education based marketing and provided prospects with quality content. With SaaS, it’s easy to think you’re selling customers a software product. But successful businesses understand that it’s not only the product they offer – they’re selling insights, information and solutions. You think you’re a SaaS company but you’re also in the information business. So how are you going to add value and help solve problems for your customers? If you’re not able to add value through quality information and guidance, the only thing you’re left to compete on is price. While this has been a successful strategy for some, it’s not going to help you build a successful SaaS business.
- Do you have a mentor who guides/advices you on matters of the business?
We have got mentoring through the Microsoft Accelerator program. We also take advice from established entrepreneurs in India and abroad from time to time.
- Have you benefitted from the use of any specific technology for your regular operations?
We are a small team and we use technology to automate our day to day operations to make most of our time, below are some products that has helped us along the way: Mail Chimp : Email marketing and Automated follow-up sequence for lead nurturing. Conversion Monk : Lead generation and Conversion Improvement. Yesware :Outbound email tracking and Sales productivity. LeadsPanda: Content marketing on Autopilot. Streak: Customer relationship management.
- What strategy do you follow for Customer Satisfaction & Expansion?
Making customer service a priority sets your business up for success, and we ensured it’s a priority from the outset. Having happy customers is the best marketing you can do. As is true in all businesses, it’s much easier to make a sale to a satisfied customer than to try to convince a new prospect to buy. If you treat your customers exceptionally well, they’re likely to spread the word and refer others your way. With top-notch service, you can build a business where repeat customers generate much of your revenue.
- What, according to you, are the top 3 skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur?