Sunday, February 22, 2009

An Entrepreneur Story - Pop Goes The Art



Glossed over by catchwords like ‘innovation’, ‘drive’, ‘passion’ etc. what is often not spoken about is the fact that many turn into entrepreneurs because they hated their day jobs. In the glut of technology options available it is something as simple as escaping the clutches of a day job that drives many down the entrepreneurial path

Six months into her job as an investor relations executive, it was dislike for her day job more than a passion for entrepreneurship that got Nidhi Karnavat to start Pop goes the Art. In the slump after a flurry of numbers, returns and financial figures, Nidhi began to rediscover her passion for art and reinvent her approach to how she would bring it back into her fold. And, in two weeks she decided to hone her passion into an enterprise; giving birth to Pop Goes The Art.

A delightful collection of personalized gifts including paintings and cushion covers, Pop Goes the Art came out of Nidhi's love for creation and a simple realization: “In today's word, people are often willing to spend large amounts of money for personalized gifts.”

In the months following her decision, Nidhi focused all her energies in developing the business, theorizing, creating pieces of art and deciphering how and when to reach out to people. Besides setting up her website, Nidhi also made some quick decisions- like booking a stall in an exhibition to be held six months later!

In November 2008, Nidhi held the first exhibition of Pop Goes The Art at the Blue Orange Exhibition. Besides she also distributed fliers and visiting cards designed by her- suitably showing off her logo, and the brand.

Starting out with an initial investment of Rs. 53,000/- (Rs. 50,000/- towards the stall and Rs. 3,000/- towards website development) Nidhi painstakingly steered Pop Goes the Art towards visibility, and in time to popularity. Among the studied decisions she took it was her decision to price her creations appropriate to age groups, styling and otherwise, that paid off. It was a decision that came in handy given the current financial meltdown. The premise behind the decision was to retain an interested customer by allowing them to pick up a cheaper variation of a design they like. Nidhi's latest expansion of her collection to include lower price variations- laptop covers, laptop sleeves and knick-knack boxes is a step in that direction.

Nidhi recalls another business move that has worked in her favor- the brand building exercise. Nidhi designed tags- with a point of contact that were attached to every product she sold. It ensured anybody who viewed her work, and liked it, knew how to reach her. Nidhi's clientèle includes friends, contacts, and friends of friends' as well as a recent splurge of customers on the web. “About 10% of my customers come from the Internet,” says Nidhi.

Twelve-hour work days seems like little work to Nidhi, who loves what she does. She is constantly innovating her brand- her latest move includes incorporating care labels and branded packaging. “My ideas are often born out of listening to my customers, and answering their queries,” explains Nidhi.

Her next move, Nidhi reveals, is tying up with boutiques in Mumbai that give credit to individual designers. “To reach varied price points again, these boutiques will exhibit digital prints of my products. But, there won't be digital prints of my range of personalized products, ensuring my digital market doesn't cannibalize my market of personalized art work,” says Nidhi, pertinent as always.


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8 comments:

  1. If I were Nidhi, I would've spent Rs.50K on building a good, scaleable website and the rest on marketing - offline or online. People often underestimate the importance on a good website design, draining their budgets on other expenses. All the best to her! :)

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  2. Amazing Business idea..... I love that desire to get out of job.... I think desire to get out of job will create so many entrepreneurs in the Indian Economy over the time...

    Unfortunately our current education system only prints emplyees and self-employees.

    It doesn't ptint all the 4 essential components of economy means employees, self-employees, Entrepreneurs & Capitalists.

    I think right now Indian and world economy needs entrepreneurs like Nidhi who can create jobs in the economy. I think our age old education system has created more than enough employees........

    We need entrepreneurs like Nidhi in the Economy.......

    Best luck Nidhi......... My Best wishes with you....!!!!!

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  3. Hey Nidhi,

    Good job! I'm also contemplating the same..giving up a job that does not excite me in any way, and doing something that I love.Your story was inspiring.

    - Kakoli

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  4. what an inspiring story. now if only i was good at something the way nidhi is :)

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  5. Hey guys,

    Thanks so much for the wishes. And Mr/Ms. Anonymous, my target audience is not that web savvy, hence i decided NOT to invest in the website and instead put the money in buying stalls at exhibitions. One exhibition 6 months ago is still fetching me clients. But now, that i've raised substantial capital, will definitely invest in an upgraded website. Thanks for the advice!

    Nidhi

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  6. well!!! whats so innovative about this idea. people can make Mehdi on there hands in a Billion ways...I always tell there are 1 billion permutation and combinations to sell and thing which is already there..
    Nidhi no hard feelings but...a person is succesful as an entreprenure when he has GOOGLE CORP. with him. Rest all is struggle for bread and butter.

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  7. I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.

    Alena

    http://smallbusinessgrant.info

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