PUDUCHERRY: A self-funded venture, Videogyan, is India’s first multi-category informational and instructional video startup. Started by Vishal Thatti, 31, and Ranga Rao TM, 34, Thulasinath Y, 32, in August 2011, it has eight employees comprising animators, editors and visual artists.
Videogyan leverages the reach of YouTube by creating original content in areas like Automotive, Business, Finance, Education, Fashion, Art, Music, Parenting, Economy, etc. Their most popular YouTube channel is ‘Videogyan Kids-Nursery Rhymes for Children’ which has more than 385 videos and 1.5 lakh subscribers. Some of its most popular videos have crossed more than 45 lakh views.
Vishal, an engineering graduate from BDT College of Engineering, Davangare, Karnataka, has been instrumental in identifying the potential of this venture, thanks to his experience with US-based online media giant Howcast, where he created more than 75 how-to-videos. In-charge of the operations of Videogyan, Ranga, an engineering graduate from Visvesvaraya Technological University, Belgaum, Karnataka, works hard to identify new categories for their channel. The technical brain is of Thulasinath who takes care of the finer aspects of the website including (hosting and managing the website).
Vishal’s work with Howcast.com led him to start his own video startup. It helped him understand the various processes involved in creation of video content. The advent and phenomenal success of YouTube meant that the distribution of the videos would be ‘easy-peasy’. Ranga says that they struck gold in the kids category, where they have increased their concentration and have also experimented with language learning as a category; Kannada and Tamil learning has got an excellent response, they say. In a triumphant voice, Ranga adds, “Our kids channel gets close to a million views a day!”
Thulasinath says that the USP of Videogyan is “neat, clear and easy to understand videos, which make learning easy. Our content has a local flavour to it and helps bring out the best of the culture and traditions of the place.” Videogyan is also working on creating mobile apps to enable the audience to experience interactive content. They distribute their videos across multiple video sites and mobile app stores by partnering with them. The ad revenue from the videos is shared between Videogyan and sites like YouTube. They provide video services to companies and charge them based on the video requirement.
Getting equipment to shoot low-cost videos for the training genre was not available in India and they sourced it with great pains. They have not spent a lot on marketing, and most of their videos have become popular due to word of mouth and social networks.
“We want to be a one-stop shop for instructional, informational and entertaining videos for audience of all age groups,” Says Vishal. His advice to prospective startup entreprenerus: “The world needs different kinds of skills and we all are born with different talents and skill sets. So don’t give up; identify your talent, work hard and be smart.”