BigmyGig : Ramalingam Subramanian
Q1.How would you describe Bigmygig in under 50 words?
BigMyGig is an online artist search and discovery tool for booking the best artist for every event. We are the amazon.com for all kinds of performing artists.
Q2.Who is the team behind your venture?
Ramalingam Subramanian Founder & CEO Having an experience with various brands for Cipla, Coca-Cola and working in software for TCS, he comes in with a deep understanding of marketing and technology. He founded Splash, an event management firm in the past and has been instrumental with young start-ups like kollegebugle.com, kickoffers.com, dalchinitiffins.com etc.
With an MBA from Jamnalal Bajaj Institute of Management Studies, he handles Client Relations, Technology & Marketing.
Pratik Rathod Founder & Director An artist by heart, Pratik is a strong pillar holding the company up. He has 10 years of rich experience in teaching music coupled with varied experiences with Arvind Lifestyle Brands Ltd. in handling brands such as USPA, Flying Machine, and Ed Hardy amongst others.
An MBA from Jamnalal Bajaj Institute of Management Studies in Marketing, he dons multiple hats in our team and is mainly responsible for Artist Management, Design and Client Servicing.
Q3.How did you come across this idea? What was missing from the current solutions that you are seeking to fix?
While Ramalingam S had worked on a few startups, Pratik Rathod was trying to find his feet in Music. Ramalingam had an event management startup called Splash before he joined JBIMS and Pratik had been practicing music for 12 years. When they met on campus, it was pure destiny. Here was an event manager searching for answers to attract good talent whereas a good talent was looking out for shows.
BigMyGig was started with a single focus. An artist doesn’t get enough shows because of poor reach and improper representation whereas a user doesn’t have many avenues for reaching out to the artist of his/her choice. We are trying to bridge this need gap through a convenient online solution
An artist needs proper representation. They need good quality portfolios which are regularly updated, are simple and convenient for them to utilize yet aesthetically pleasing to their audiences. Then there is the need for getting the right price for the talent, security in payments and surety of transactions. An organizer on the other hand, needs convenience for booking artists from the comfort of their homes in a simple step by step manner. Further, they need to have options that are relevant to their needs and requirement so that they don’t have to compromise on eventual output. They also need to be well informed while making this decision. We need to ensure that the payments are secure and performance guaranteed.
Q4.What is your work style?
The culture in the organization is fun yet focused. It’s really the people that make BigMyGig the kind of company it is. We hire people who are smart and determined, and we favor ability over experience. Although our team members share common goals and visions for the company, we hail from all walks of life and speak different languages, reflecting the global audience that we serve. And when not at work, we pursue interests ranging from jamming to sports, singing to mountaineering etc. We strive to maintain the open culture often associated with startups, in which everyone is a hands-on contributor and feels comfortable sharing ideas and opinions.
Q5.How has the growth been since launch and what are the future plans?
BigMyGig was initially started as an offline company managing artists to garner a strong learning curve so as to provide specific solutions to problems. Today they boast of 1250 artists across 50 different skill types and 100+ genre of entertainment. They have reached 650 event managers across Mumbai in the meantime.
We at BigMyGig have already started laying plans for expansion to more cities in the country and also on a few international tie-ups. We are working on a delivery system to provide our artists through our distributors in countries like Australia, Canada and the USA. We also wish to engage with more artists across the globe and represent them on our portal. We have started a special program for identifying artists from smaller towns and villages with a high potential. This program will help us increase their reach and global appeal.
Q6.What would you say is the biggest lesson you have learned while running Bigmygig?
The journey of BigMyGig has been truly enriching for us. Along the way, we have learnt many lessons. The biggest being taking control of work. As corporates we have had the luxury of working with good quality resources who deliver as expected with little or no intervention. At a bootstrapped startup, cash crunch teaches you how to get work done without the luxury of such resources. We also have learned how to grow team members to punch above their weight and achieve miraculous goals. Motivating and building such a team would be one of the biggest lessons we have learned so far.
Q7.What is the biggest hurdle you have faced or are still facing?
Finding the right team to execute your project is still the biggest challenge that we face. It is not just about finding the right person for the role qualifications wise, but about finding the right person with the right attitude, penchant for taking risks and passionate like the core team. This is still the biggest hurdle we are facing.
Q8.If you could only give one piece of advice, what would it be?
As advice we would want people to be large hearted, brave and committed to success in their startup journey.
Q9.Who do you see as your target audience?
At BigMyGig, we see two core audiences, Artist and Event Organizers. We cater to all of them through various products in our tool.
For the Event Organizer the tool enables them to search through over 1250 digital portfolios, filter, short-list and book the portfolios that they like. The search engine works on the principle of relevancy. This ensures that every artist requirement is accurately serviced. Using the Packages feature of the tool, the event organizer can book a complete Entertainment Package for that memorable event.
On the artist front, this tool uses a 3 stage filtering process, known as the Invitation Model. Here, artists can send requests to join BigMyGig through dedicated links on the website, post which a screening process is undertaken. Artists are invited only when they meet stringent quality parameters. This ensures that every artist on BigMyGig is verified and validated, ensuring 100% quality to our patrons.
The tool is built on the basis of trust & transparency which forms the backbone of the entertainment industry. Artists can set their own price and also involve in direct negotiations with clients, with BigMyGig playing the role of a facilitator. With the security of payments, artists can now safely focus on improving their talent while relying on BigMyGig for their business.
Q10.Has your initial vision changed since launch?
For us we our working with a simple long term vision. To improve the quality of entertainment in everyday life. We firmly believe, Food, Shelter, Clothing and some form of Entertainment is a basic necessity for every individual. This has been true over the ages and we hope to make a positive impact in this direction. .
With BigMyGig, we are trying to reach our vision by improving entertainment through artists being present at the right place at the right time. This core vision has remained unchanged since inception.
Q11.What is your one tip for aspiring entrepreneurs?
For all wannabe entrepreneurs out there, we would like you to not be sitting on the fence, but get your hands dirty, get burnt cause only the one’s that can endure the heat, shine.