The way a brand is marketed speaks a lot about its future growth and popularity among the customers. The Brand March is a marketing agency based in Pune, Maharashtra. We spoke with its founder Pradnya Kakade at the Digital Women Awards 2019, about her journey till now and how technology has helped her achieve her target. Here is what she says:

How did your big idea strike you?

Working with brands has always energised me. The very thought of creating and growing a brand is amazing. It gives me a motherly feeling when I work with brands. Brands just like kids, know no bounds. You can explore, create, nurture and grow brands to thrive and add value to the society. With more to do and achieve, I realised that I could do magic with the brands if I step out of the comfort of 9-5 jobs. With this, I took on my entrepreneurial journey. The journey began with a thought and transformed into the formation of ‘The Brand March.’

A smart woman entrepreneur is one who is comfortable with her finances. Gaining financial and investment knowledge is a must for every women entrepreneur.

How has tech and digital been an enabler in your entrepreneurial journey? 

In today’s tech-savvy era, Digital and Branding go hand-in-hand. Technology has been the greatest source of blessing for small and upcoming brands. There was a time when only legacy brands and brands with budgets could make it to being ‘The Brands.’ With Digital, even a start-up with the right branding and digital plan can effectively reach its target audience. Keeping these aspects in mind the need to upgrade me was important with relevant courses and certifications. I took up a digital marketing course which gave me good insights, attained the MDP program on ‘Invoking the Power of Visuals’ by MICA, and later enrolled Women Entrepreneurship Program organised by Symbiosis, Pune. All these programs gave me great insights to kick start my entrepreneurial journey.

What have been your greatest challenges in your journey? 

As most start-ups and individuals want to explore digital space to expand. But they were not sure if digital presence would help them to meet their business objectives. Because of this, they were not allocating budgets for digital activities. We started educating them and planned their digital presence one step at a time. With minimum budgets, we started their online campaigns. As the results started showing up, they were much more confident and continued their brand’s digital presence.

As a woman entrepreneur would you say you have faced discrimination in your journey?

I have been fortunate to meet people who understood the value I brought on the table. Whether it’s managing a team or clients, having the right knowledge, insights, ability to express, listen and understand goes a long way. I believe, if you are strong, focused and passionate about your work, people will definitely look up to you and things will fall into place. However, as women entrepreneurs we must be able to hold conversations with clients apart from work. Speaking about current updates, industry, new work and our experience, etc. This helps to build a good connection and rapport with clients.

What do you think women entrepreneurs need more of, from venture capitalists, government policymakers, start-up support programs, and others?

A smart woman entrepreneur is one who is comfortable with her finances. Gaining financial and investment knowledge is a must for every woman entrepreneur. Venture capitalists, policies, and programs will give an edge to women and their entrepreneurial journey.

Follow your dreams and don’t be afraid of failure or what others might say. The best way is to START. Don’t procrastinate or delay your plans.

Follow your dreams and don’t be afraid of failure or what others might say. The best way is to START. Don’t procrastinate or delay your plans.

What would you say have been your greatest learning on the entrepreneurial journey? 

Digital is a constantly evolving field and one needs to be updated to add value to one’s clients. Learning is an on-going process, and definitely true for attaining great success. Keeping abreast with recent algorithms, creatives, themes, social media updates and much more. I’m Certified Google Digital Unlocked Trainer and take workshops for business owners, entrepreneurs, marketing professionals and those who want to explore the digital field. These workshops have enabled me to spread awareness and opportunities a brand can achieve with its digital presence. Another important learning has been team management. I learned more about people as each person is different and needs to be treated accordingly. Being patience, understanding and listening to my team has gone a long way behind the success of my entrepreneurial journey.

What advice would you share with other women looking to become entrepreneurs?

Follow your dreams and don’t be afraid of failure or what others might say. The best way is to START. Don’t procrastinate or delay your plans. Entrepreneurship is a learning journey and you will learn in the process. I believe in execution. Once you are on the execution mode, opportunities will start unfolding, you will get answers to questions that otherwise were not evident, people will come to support you and it will be your amazing journey. As women entrepreneurs, we need to be confident. Our knowledge – about our field as well as both financial and industry will help build that lasting impression. One should be able to make interesting and informative conversations with people. By valuing ourselves and taking care of us we will be able to add value and gain respect as women entrepreneurs. Life is beautiful and let’s keep it one. Let’s overcome our ifs and buts and Just do it.

Your greatest strength 

My greatest strength is people. I believe that no person can be self-made. I really thank my family – husband, son, dad, my team, colleagues, friends who have stood with me and have been my core strength. In the field that I work, we are constantly on our toes and need to meet deadlines.

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