Technology has been an agent of inequity. Predominantly, technology has impacted those who can afford to buy its services and today it’s a thing of the privileged. The same goes with businesses. The larger corporations can use web technology for marketing and other promotional activities, while the local shops remain in the dark in the use of these innovations.
The majority of India shops with Local Merchants. While they may enjoy good business with current services that they provide, being technologically impotent serves as a particularly large barrier to scale; most local merchants have a very small business life span. Addressing
this problem is Arindam Paul’s LiveChant,which serves to improve the merchant-consumer communication problemA Business Solving a Problem
After an extensive research, Arindam’s team found a gaping hole in the communication channel between local merchants and their customers.
“Most local merchants can never convey information about their offerings event to their existing customers. This was prevalent through all kinds of local merchants. LiveChant is a platform for merchants, which broadcasts location specific information from merchants to consumers,” said Arindam, on the reason for creating LiveChant.
Launched 3 months ago, by a 3 member team, the platform now houses 500 merchants with over 700 pieces of information being broadcasted among them.
To fully benefit the merchants, Arindam identifies technology and understanding the need for the product as barriers that he needed to overcome.
“Many merchants don’t know how to use an internet enabled computer. To help them, we have enabled transfer of information via text messages from mobile phones as well. We also have a small support team that helps our merchants with technical difficulties.
“Also, we have tied up with a reputed telemarketing agency which has been very successful in conveying the need for having our product to the merchants. Most of the time, the merchants need to be made to understand the need for our product and these guys do are doing a good job,” said Arindham on overcoming barriers.
Keeping it free
“We’re looking to keep this a free service for merchants. It will be based on the freemium model. We are working on monetary deals with larger merchants on some innovative products to support the work that we’re doing with LiveChant.”
Arindam believes that such a service that provide great help for merchants should not be priced very highly as it will lead to creation of more inequity.
Arindam Paul’s service mindedness is commendable, but his astute business mindedness shined through our conversation with him. There is definitely more to expect from this second time entrepreneur, and watch this space to learn more about LiveChant.
Visit LiveChant here.