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SMEs should focus on uniqueness: Startup mentor

Visakhapatnam: “Small and medium enterprises should focus on creating their brand identity and uniqueness that can be showcased in the international market,” said Startup Xperts founder and chief mentor Shyam Sekar S. He said SMEs and startups can leverage through smart marketing strategies and position themselves better. Participating in the third edition of ‘Start, manage, expand: A knowledge-led small medium business conference’ organised by the AP Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Sekar said effective and smart branding can help win clients, increase revenue and profitability. Also startups and SMEs should pursue ‘digital marketing’ to position themselves as thought leaders in their space, he added.

While pursuing digital marketing tactics, the focus should be on the customers and their need, he said adding that twin strategies – inbound and outbound – need to be adopted. Inbound involves SEO (search engine optimisation), blogs and social media posts whereas outbound include SEM (search engine marketing) and social media ads. Right balance is essential for companies to succeed, depending on the industry they are in, apart from the market, customer segment, budget and other factors.

Andhra Pradesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry vice-president G Sambasiva Rao said, “SMEs are definitely playing a potent role in all sectors whether it is automobile, or shipping and allied services like ship breaking and dry docking”.

He said upgradation of industry-oriented skills to tribal people will make them a part of the mainstream and ancillary units in and around Visakhapatnam. At the same time, the role of MUDRA Bank is much needed to boost startup entrepreneurs as it is extending financial support to the tune of Rs 10 lakh without any collateral guarantee.

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