“From Struggle to Success” Walk like a local, talk like a local
Nowadays, most of the businesses are building to be global. Internet made it easy to find customers, suppliers or business partners from all over the world without leaving your office. This is seen as a great opportunity for many entrepreneurs to build their network and expand their knowledge. The target group is bigger and the chances of getting more customers are higher. Social Media is used to promote a product or a service to potential buyers from different countries and many starting companies are building their marketing strategy around them.
It sounds great and easy, now you can aim to sell your product to 100000 rather than few 1000’s. It’s not that easy as it sounds and as a start up you should be careful when executing marketing strategy on a global scale. There are different cultures across the globe and people do not do business in the same way. That is why it is a must to get to know how they do it.
This article will introduce you to Uday Singh, founder of Hippiewalks (http://www.hippiewalks.com). A company launched on July 16, 2015, which aims to connect travelers and locals to create one unforgettable experience.
1. What are your idea/ business about? How the idea was born?
The story of Hippiewalks started with my journey to Europe. When I was backpacking in Europe, the hospitality and the love I received from people of Europe led me to build this community to help travelers. To give back same love to all kind humans of this world, I intended to build a community of travelers and locals who would like to meet and show the town to travelers from the locals’ perspective. It’s said that a journey is measured in friends and not in miles.
It often happens that travelers do not get the real feel of a foreign town in a limited time frame. You do not get to make genuine friends/connections. You often miss out a lot in town when you visit. I faced this problem, too. I am working to solve this problem building a community called Hippiewalks.
We envision a world made better by people sharing a part of their life and travel made richer by connections. The hosts share their lives with the travelers they encounter, fostering cultural exchange. One of the objectives is women safety. A solo women traveler can book a free walking tour with another women host.
Hippiewalks is meant to share happiness with travelers, build a bond of friendship and unity among people.
All hosts and travelers are required to submit an identity proof as a safety precaution. Travelers’ identity proofs are then removed from the system after a period of 7 days. All tour walk services are provided free of charge to all travelers though tips to hosts are encouraged. We have tours listed from 12 countries so far – Iceland, Italy, Hungary, Romania, China,Vietnam, Indonesia, Turkey, Columbia, India, Cyprus and Brazil.
2. Tell me about yourself and your team?
I am Computer Engineer and a Management graduate born and educated in India. I like spending time on walks, cycling, business, philosophy, reading, blogging, music, guitar, art, traveling, cheese burst pizza and photography . I have also authored two photographic art books titled ‘Cycles of Europe’ and ‘Windows and Doors of Europe’ available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
I am also working on 2 more startups – Whitepuppie.com (It provides a C2C online platform to artists, housewives, designers, small businesses in marketing and selling their handmade products and arts globally) and thebinnews.com (An entertainment News media site).
3. What are the main struggles that you have experienced?
The main struggle is spreading the word out myself on a limited budget as I am bootstrapping presently. Another struggle is introducing feedback feature on site that will ensure a trust factor.
4. How did you solve your problems?
To solve the problem of spreading the word out, I am using social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter presently.
5. If you had a chance what would you do in differently?
If I had a chance I would visit each country on this planet personally and do extensive marketing and spread the word around through hostels, hotels and travelers and build a largest traveler-local community encouraging sharing and caring.
6. What was the best advice you got and what was the worst?
- Best Advice: Words I got from a Turkish lady from Izmir – “Your project is awesome. I hope it covers all cities of the world. And I hope to join your tour once I am in New Delhi in October.”
- Worst Advice: Words I got from a lady from New Jersey – “Your project overlaps with couchsurfing and we won’t appreciate our time going out for free. Our time is valued hence; we would join you if you make services paid.”
7. What will be your advice to the other entrepreneurs?
Follow your dreams and earn to embrace failures. One, who fails 9 times, succeeds in 10th attempt.
If you want to learn more about the company you are more than welcome to contact them at: email@example.com., even if you are an alien or dinosaur. Hippiewalks is open to travelers from across the universe. Even Aliens and Dinosaurs are most welcome!
We hope you enjoyed reading this story and if you want to share your own great story please contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
July 22, 2016