We see a lot of information about digitalization, the Internet and Big Data flooding the news. The world is well aware that digital technology will transform products and business models in the consumer space. Digital transformation has brought about numerous gains to various industries spread across the globe such as aviation, healthcare, education, media, finance and some of the key automobile companies. The digital world has helped us re-engineer business processes and marketing in the last decade.
Brands have started following the latest trends, updating content, providing clients quality over quantity. Big names such as Elon Musk, Ray Dalio, Brian Tracy, and Steve Jobs have revolutionised the digital world and how we use it. Digital media is the future and a lot of businesses who have online products or businesses have seen a growth in response and sales from their consumers and many other brands are slowly following the trend.
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Dreams can only be a reality if you execute them. So is the story of a young entrepreneur, Nigel Quadros who started his venture AndroGuru at a very young age. He put Goa on the digital map by being the youngest Goan to attend and be a featured partner at the AnDevCon, which is the world’s largest Android Developer Conference that happens in Boston.
Motivation is like a can of Red Bull. The more you drink it, the more you persevere and be consistent to make sure you reach where you want to.
With successes with his clients across India, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and U.A.E, Nigel tells us at Goan Insider how his journey all started. The excerpts of our interaction are below.
Tell us a little about yourself.
I am and will always be a learner for life even though being a recognized entrepreneur and digital marketing evangelist in the Middle East who provides his expertise as a consultant for some of the biggest companies in India, Qatar, Oman, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates.
You started AndroGuru at the age of 19. What inspired and motivated you to start?
I started AndroGuru at the age of 19 years with the passion for Android technology and sharing my knowledge for the greater good. I believe that “Dreams can only be a reality if you execute!” First of all, I’ve failed many times and even keep failing even till today. What keeps me motivated is the support from family, friends and well-wishers. Secondly, my inspiration comes from some books that I’ve read in the past few years during my journey as a struggler. People who I avidly follow are Elon Musk, Ray Dalio, Brian Tracy, and Steve Jobs. Motivation is like a can of Red Bull. The more you drink it, the more you persevere and be consistent to make sure you reach where you want to.
AndroGuru.com has grown to be a well-known brand. A ton of hard work must have gone into it. How did you build AndroGuru.com from scratch?
This journey goes back to 2013 when I was thinking what exactly to do; study or discontinue education because I always had this in my mind that – “An educational certificate is as good as toilet paper.It’s experience and real life decisions that matter!” In July that year, I bought the domain and hosting and started off with a couple of bucks which I saved over the years creating websites for clients as a freelancer. Well, I would say that effort helped me kick-start my venture. A few months later I started earning revenue from affiliates as well as other advertising mediums such as Rakuten, Google, Flipkart, Amazon, among many others. The drive and passion grew stronger after actually looking at the pay-outs I was getting.
A few years later in 2015, I got selected as one of the youngest on the map of Goa to attend and be a Featured Partner at the AnDevCon which is the world’s largest Android Developer Conference that happens in Boston. I was thrilled to know that such a thing could happen. I used to never attend my lectures in college and just scrape through as an average student. My teachers loved me, but I used to get into trouble for bunking, mass-bunking and you can name it! That was the point in my life where I wanted to make a difference, so I made sure that I focused on connecting with corporate heads at various mobile companies to get them to send me gadgets but got turned down every single time.
I didn’t stop there! I kept on innovating the features and content on the website. The eureka moment was when I got a reply from one of the top mobile manufacturers saying that “ We will send you the device, but after review you will have to return it”. I yelled with joy and accepted the offer because that was the first step I needed to climb out of all the other steps. Thereafter, there was no looking back as the website got more traffic and readers so other manufacturers came on board.
What were the challenges that you faced in the initial days of growth? How did you overcome them?
- People always want to pull others down so I had to distance myself from all the negative energy.
- A lot of financial issues because I wanted to invest in certain things, but found a way out.
- Retaining team members to stay was another challenge and I’ve learnt over the years how to manage a team.
There is a lot of competition in this field. How do you manage to stand out from the others?
There are a lot of players out there in the same domain, but I believe that I am my only competitor and every idea is different. People invest in other people and not in the ideas. It’s a hard fact. I make sure that we are following the latest trends, updating content, providing clients quality over quantity. We make sure that our clients spread across India, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and U.A.E are always given the best. I personally believe that “after sales relationship/service” is a key ingredient to having a long lasting business relationship.
Being from the state of Goa, has this impacted the growth of AndroGuru.com?
Goa has always been close to my heart as well as my Goans, even though I have lived most of my life in the Middle East. The serenity of Goa has always helped me be “susegado” and make sure things go slow but have a future. I’m proud to be a Goan! Initially when I started off with AndroGuru, I used to get a lot of web traffic only from Goa because friends, family, relatives were and will always be my supporters. Goans have motivated me to the peak-performance level and unlocked my mind to make sure – “If things don’t go right, slip to the left”!
How did you build your clientele? Which are some of your best clients?
Having over 10 years of experience in the digital industry, there are a few things that I made sure of along the way:
- Always under-commit and over-deliver.
- Quality is key and not the price.
- Look at the product as if you’re building it for you.
- Networking plays a crucial role when you start up.
We work with clients across different verticals spread across aviation, healthcare, education, media, finance and some of the key automobile companies spread across the globe.
As the founder of a startup, what worries you? What keeps you awake at night?
I wouldn’t be worried if I wake up and end up in Hawaii. Jokes apart, there are a lot of things that happen in the background that are always an issue that needs to be sorted. I make sure things are tackled in the right way but in simple words – my sleep is never disturbed.
Tell us about a typical day in your life. Your schedule for a day right from the time you wake up till the time you call it a night.
My day starts at 6:00 AM and ends at 9:00 PM, but the business and life model I live by is “make money work for you even when you are asleep”. If you build a product/business, make sure it’s like an Iron man that does the actual work for you just like how Jarvis controls the mechanical structure of Iron man. Most of my work happens through email and phone calls. I’m always constantly in touch with clients to make sure they are not only happy but never-satisfied so that we can always make a change for them. Between my day, there’s always a few friends, family who always call to check up on me. My day is nothing amazing to know, but I make sure that every second and minute is totally invested.
Tell us about your team? How do you maintain a cool office atmosphere?
We have an office based in India and U.A.E, but most of the team works intangibly from home, their friend’s home, etc. This has always been the culture as it allows space; as well as decreases a lot of overhead costs with regards to corporate rent, allowances, etc.
Do you have any investors? How did you approach them?
Unfortunately, no investors up till now. I am having couple of ideas in the pipeline for which I will definitely need some big numbers. Having a clear idea, making a strong business plan with break-even critical are important. Investors strongly look at the idea and the numbers that they can make over time, so the actual deal lies there.
Has Covid-19 affected your business? If so, how are you tackling the situation?
It has not affected the business completely but there are certain things that we are taking care of in a very positive way to make sure that our staff (regular as well as freelancers) have stability with us. Digital media is the future and a lot of other businesses who have online products/businesses are not hit to some extent but I am eager to see the COVID-19 situation clearing off soon. Abu Dhabi has already gone in Phase 3 for the COVID-19 vaccine, so let’s hope for the best.
Any advice that you want to give to upcoming entrepreneurs who are thinking of starting up?
The strength of taking a risk and failing is the greatest thing an entrepreneur can possess. Make sure that you don’t just present but, believe in execution. Separate yourself from the negativity and focus on the product.
What is next for you and AndroGuru.com?
Well, after AndroGuru I moved on to founding WHN Digital with my partners, William Britto and Assis Cardozo. We founded a Konkani movie platform called Goencho Balcao that allows movie lovers to watch their favorite Konkani movies, dramas and tiatrs, all online. I’m moving into the iOS space very soon with iOSGuru that will officially be launching soon. My team is very excited to work on this with some amazing ideas and concepts that will take the iOS industry in India to another level.
Any other information that you would like to share?
There is a lot of growth and future in artificial intelligence, machine learning, and business intelligence which means that a lot of startups will focus on innovating with products that focus on the above technologies and methods.I would recommend students who are aspiring to join this industry, should focus on the latest and forget about the old.
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