Ujwal Sharma of Empire Weekly.
Tell us about yourself?
My name is Ujwal Sharma, and I am an award-winning Indian entrepreneur, investor, and digital marketer.
I am the Founder and CEO of Uzi World Digital, one of India’s fastest-growing digital marketing and public relations consulting firms, as well as the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Empire Weekly, an international award-winning Internet news publishing organisation.
As a Digital Marketing Specialist with over 6 years of experience, I’ve helped several Indian and foreign businesses expand their online presence.
I am also the recipient of the India 500 CEO Awards 2022, the Indian Achievers’ Award 2020, and among the most influential CEOs in India.
What lessons has being an entrepreneur taught you?
One thing to remember about entrepreneurship is that failure is not the end, but rather the opportunity for a fresh start.
Making money is important for your business’s success, but what’s even more important is your vision and passion for it. Maintaining an ongoing gratitude practise is essential for remaining calm and grounded during the ups and downs of business ownership.
Show genuine gratitude to those who work for you. Having loyal employees is extremely valuable, but it is often overlooked. Taking talent for granted or letting them know they can be replaced is a big mistake.
We cannot treat people as disposable commodities in a throwaway society. Have a plan B for everything.
This allows you to be adaptable and meet changing needs. Try to predict what will happen if a key employee or client leaves or a new competitor enters the market.
Prepare for as many scenarios as possible and have a backup plan in place in case your first option fails.
The majority of business leaders are afraid of failing. Failure is portrayed as shameful in our society, and we may miss out on opportunities and success as a result of our fear of failing.
If you could go back in time to when you first started your business, what piece of advice would you give yourself?
Don’t start in excitement, first do the research and then start with the work, gain more knowledge and market your service and start promoting it to gain brand awareness.
A lot of entrepreneurs find it difficult to balance their work and personal lives. How have you found that?
Things will be so hectic during the first two years of running a startup that you will have no real personal life.
This is true for almost everything you will do to succeed in life.
After about 2-3 years, you begin to gradually balance your personal life, taking weekends off and bringing structured time for family and hobbies.
Give us a bit of an insight into the influences behind the company?
The world is becoming more digital, and digitization is a requirement for every business and industry.
One advantage of online news sites is the ability to participate in various opinion polls, replies, and comments, which take time in print editions. Online news sites are mostly preferred by younger generations.
Online news sites play an important role in educating and informing the public about current events around the world.
Web media is a wonderful and in-demand source in any society because it provides the most up-to-date information on a variety of issues in one package.
A Web news portal allows you to get news on multiple topics at once, such as politics, the world, business, sports, health, product information, gadget comparison, finance, and so on.
What do you think is your magic sauce? What sets you apart from the competitors?
When it comes to news portals and news sites, people are mostly individuals or groups of 10-20, and they are not working as efficiently on the site to update the content on time, but having a strong and large human resource along with you is a plus point in the online news publishing industry because you get everything on time, from publishing the latest news to updating the old article.
How have you found sales so far? Do you have any lessons you could pass on to other founders in the same market as you just starting out?
We have a self-sustaining, bootstrapped revenue model that is based on Google Ads, online advertisements, and sponsored articles.
We are constantly working to secure grants for our journalism work.
When you want to make money with your news website, you should think about new and unique features that you can offer to differentiate yourself from other sites.
A functional website with quality content, a pleasant design, significant traffic, and some “zing” to distinguish yourself from other websites is required for successful monetization.
Ads that are too numerous will have a negative impact on the design, usability, and user experience of your website. It is critical that your website evolves in order to keep up with modern trends and technologies.
What is the biggest challenge you have faced so far in your business, and how did you overcome it?
The most difficult challenge is producing quality content while maintaining a user-friendly website.
However, having a proper plan in place ahead of time has greatly aided us in managing the entire operation of our news site.
What do you consider are the main strengths of operating your business in India and the specific state you are in over other states in India?
The only advantage of working in India right now is that you get very good team members who are extremely professional in their work.
What (if any) are some weaknesses of operating your business within India and your state?
Everything appears to be in order here in India; business appears to be running smoothly and without any issue.
People who work for Empire Weekly are very different from others; they value time management, professional skills, and good communication skills.
If you could operate your business in another state in India rather than the State you are in, which state would it be and why?
I am currently based in Kolkata, West Bengal, and I would like to relocate our entire setup and business to Gujarat or possibly Tamil Nadu.
Ahmedabad is the state capital of Gujarat as well as its largest city. It is one of India’s most popular business centres.
Because of the hundreds of mills, it was previously known as “Manchester of India.” Tamil Nadu, India’s fourth largest state, has high economic dynamism and human development indicators, a highly attractive investment climate that can be compared to the best in Asia, good infrastructure, and is the country’s leading innovation and knowledge hub.
India has an incredibly diverse population. How has the affected your consumer base and business?
Although India is not our primary or target market, we have a global presence as a news site. The majority of our traffic come from the United States, the United Kingdom, and other major countries.
Infrastructure is really important to businesses. How have you seen India’s infrastructure improve recently? Do you see new opportunities opening up?
Businesses can produce and deliver more goods and services when a country invests in economic infrastructure.
Depending on the budget, the level of product and service production can be significantly increased, resulting in faster and longer-term economic growth.
As per ibef.org By 2022, India is expected to be the world’s third-largest construction market.
By 2025, the Indian logistics market is expected to reach US$ 320 billion.
What do you want to accomplish in the next 5 years with your business?
As of 2021, Empire Weekly’s profits had increased by 100%, with over 25 million impressions on its website and over 5000-50000 daily visitors.
I hope that in the next five years, we will be at the top of the online news publishing industry.
And finally, if people want to get involved and learn more about your business, how should they do that?
Tariffs are customs duties levied on imported goods.
Tariffs give locally produced goods a price advantage over similar imported goods, and they raise revenue for governments.
Tariffs have no effect on Empire Weekly.
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