When 39-year-old Sanghamitra Khatu decided to become an entrepreneur, the only thing she was insistent about was that her venture should create a social impact. With that in mind, she went about vetting ideas and suggestions. Khatu tried her hand at education but did not enjoy it. She found that stories of success and overcoming hurdles excited her and that it was something that people resonated with. So she zeroed in on digital media to make content that would inspire the youth. To make it more hard-hitting, Khatu decided to get into a video format where real-life stories would be narrated and people could watch it.
“I found that a huge social issue is that the younger generation is addicted to their gadgets and it’s not necessary that their timelines are positive. So we set off telling inspiring stories of real people in an entertaining captivating manner. We started to research stories of people across interests of our viewers i.e. music, design, travel, sports and society at large," she said.
Some stories are of people who have talent but do not have the money to fulfill it. Through their stories, the startup aims to help and support them. "We provide support in terms of publicity, mentorship and money to help people make and stick to their life-changing decisions," she said. Towards this end, Tribal Box is launching a crowdfunding platform to enable its audience and consumers to play an active role in the lives of its protagonists who need support to realise their dreams.
Pooling her savings from the fintech sector she had worked in for over a decade, Khatu launched The Tribal Box in March 2018 with a seed money of Rs 10 lakh. So far she has invested Rs 3 crore of her savings into the venture. Named Tribal Box as it is akin to a box full of wild tribal stories of amazing people, says Khatu, the bootstrapped venture found real-life stories initially from the network of people she knew.
The stories are featured free of charge and can be accessed on the website (www.thetribalbox.com) freely and also on other online platforms like Facebook, Twitter, etc. As of now, it has four genres: music, travel, sports and people's corner.
As the Bengaluru-based startup started getting traction, stories have been coming from people on social media who reach out to Khatu and her venture. “We aim to be the game-changer in society by creating a network of people who are already following their dreams and at the same time probably helping and mentoring the younger generation in their pursuit to achieve their dreams.”
The startup is in talks with marketing heads of companies where it can pitch its stories as a marketing tool to help brands resonate with their target audience. "The brand’s message can be demonstrated by a story telling format through the life of the protagonist," Khatu said. In this way the brand gets content, can also integrate its logo in any of the video stories on The Tribal Box and the money paid for the service could help the startup cover its cost of production, promotion while the rest will go to the protagonist, said Khatu.
The stories are vetted by the team and those who make claims of having achieved anything have to support it with certificates, and other testimonials. The stories are updated when the protagonists make progress in their field. A feature story is uploaded every week on the platform. So far over 100 stories of people have been featured. “We research stories extensively, meet our protagonists, discuss in detail their life goals and steps they have taken towards achieving them. We discuss all the stories internally and look at them from a lens of how is this inspiring for people. If the story meets all our internal parameters, we go ahead and shoot and publish the stories,” said Khatu.
Khatu said that they are looking at angel funding to be able to travel and shoot more stories. “We have built a team and are very keen on expansion and we need funding for this expansion plan. We plan to go global by incorporating stories from people in other countries. We expect to breakeven in three year’s time,” she said.
The influencer marketing industry is estimated to be around Rs 1,000 to Rs 1,500 crore, says Khatu, adding that her venture is looking at capturing 30 percent of it.
Updated Date: Oct 24, 2018 17:05:45 IST