Tell us about yourself
Hi, I am Praval Singh and I run a social media branding and consulting company called MediaRedefined, based out of NCR, India. Alongside, I am an independent blogger and write for various top blogs on Open Source, Internet Marketing, Blogging, Social Media and Web 2.0 in general. The details are available at my website.
Tell us something we do not know about you
OK! I am not sure if you’re aware but I have worked as a freelance writer when I was in the pre-final year of my Computer Science engineering. That was when I realized that I can do this professionally. However, I have been blogging and studying the social media trends out of passion for the past 3 years now and have offered my consulting services to a lot of businesses, entrepreneurs and other individuals.
How long have you been blogging?
I have been blogging since early 2006 but I started to blog professionally only in 2008. Few of the blogs where I write are:
What inspired you to be a blogger?
I have always been passionate for reading and writing. As I grew up, my love extended to computers. A computer was my second love, just because it was a bit late!
Gradually, I learnt about the internet and other stuff when I was a kid. That was in the year 2000. As I grew up, my desires grew symmetrically. One day, I stumbled on a blog. That changed the way I thought about writing. I realized that I can write and put it up for public to comment. I had no clues that I would be doing this full time, in the times to come. That, I would say was my inspiration to use computer as a medium to write, to blog.
How did ICanHasStartup.com happen?
Icanhasstartup.com was a brain child of Shabda, a guy who runs a django web development shop in Hyderabad, India. He wanted to build something on the lines of TechCrunch, but just for Indian start-ups. He knew me over the web and found me to fit in his needs. That’s how we kicked it off!
I am the Chief-editor at the Icanhasstartup blog where in we feature Indian start-ups. We’re currently rolling out interviews of top Indian start-ups and shall move on to some more innovative content once we’re done with a pile of interviews.
ICanHasStartup.com predominantly features interviews. How is that unique from existing online news blogs and portals? (you could talk about the USP)
I guess I have already answered the first part of this question. Icanhasstartup is a relatively new blog which has a different perspective. Once we have solid cornerstone content on board, we shall unleash a lot more content on various verticals of Indian start-up paradigm. I would not like to disclose the strategy at this point of time but would recommend you to keep visiting the blog for some real good news in times to come!
What is Media Redefined all about?
MediaRedefined.com is my own venture where in we provide social media branding, consulting and web development solutions for businesses. I am one of the 3 co-founders. We have kicked it off in the last week of January’2009 and I have found a tremendous response ever since.
The idea to have a startup of my own was causing me an itch since more than year. But I was unsure of what exactly I can do to help business grow. All this only until I met my 2 co-founders and together with our expertise in 3 different domains – Design, web-development and social media strategies, we could smell that we’re the next generation, complete web solutions team.
We’re now a one stop shop for creating and managing a business’s complete online presence. Right from hosting, design to conversational strategies, have it all – in house!
Could you name an online trend which could reshape the scenario?
One thing that I sense is that in India, it’ll take another 5 years for blogging to come on front seat, if not replace the print media. Today, almost all news networks have their blogs up and running.
Social media wave has hit the web 2.0 world hard. Web applications like facebook, twitter, etc. are being used far and wide. Thanks to the API which has led to creation of several new desktop application running on Adobe AIR, or otherwise for people to add a new flavor to the way they communicate over the internet.
One user comment that has stuck with you
There are several comments which stuck into my head! But this one is by far the most memorable one. I once wrote a post on my personal blog which taught people to remove some virus named “AMVO”. One guy who was helpless with this infection for a long time despite trying out world’s leading antivirus solutions happened to stumble on the post. He was so happy that he offered me a beer after he could clean his PC using the script offered. The beer still remains due!
3 tips / tricks for budding bloggers
1) Writing is easy, writing effectively is an art. I ain’t calling it difficult though! Learn the art by following blogs which teach you how to blog effectively. Everything you find might not be as good but such blog do help in initial times.
2) Do not think of monetizing your blog and making it a clutter. Keep things simple and concentrate on the content for the first few months.
3) Learn to be friends with fellow bloggers and network with them. You’ll learn things fast and in a better way!