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January - 2014 - issue > CEO Spotlight
Technology Shouldering Entrepreneurship
Jitendra Gupta
CEO-Punchh
Thursday, January 2, 2014
Headquartered in California, Punchh is a provider of branded mobile apps and cloud based services for restaurants that use mobile devices and social networks for communication. Founded in 2010, the company has received a total funding of $4 million from Cervin Ventures, Sandhill Group, Green Span Ventures, VKRM Ventures and Garnett Ventures.

Mobile technologies have quickly changed the way we live our lives and the way businesses interact with their customers. According to Pew Research, more than 64 percent of Americans carry smart phones, and that adoption rate spans every socio-economic segment and is increasing rapidly. Increase in social network interactions through mobiles shows the tech savvy nature of consumers. Businesses that use mobile technologies to connect with customers and build relationships will win against competitors who do not know how to leverage mobile effectively. Going forward, mobile technologies will disrupt every industry.

There are so many ways that mobile is disrupting the way brands are doing business. According to eMarketer, mobile is the only media time that is growing. eMarketer predicted that by 2014, the time spent on mobile would exceed the time consumers spend watching television. There is also a quantitative and qualitative role of Marketing towards this boom.

Though marketing has changed very rapidly in the last few years, through digital technologies such as social media and mobile, it is mobile which is torch heading this marketing revolution. Top brands like McDonalds and Starbucks appointing a chief digital strategy officer only show the imperativeness of it, as technologies like digital strategy are being implemented.

CRM- Critical Customer Engagements
The World Wide Web was a revelation back in the 90s, now we have mobiles, and nearly every experience for their customers will no longer be an option.

For Instance, the majority of customers entering a restaurant expect the restaurateur to engage them in some way—whether it is loyalty or simply recognition. This engagement or personalized communication is where mobile engagement trumps traditional advertising every time, especially in the very social restaurant industry. At Punchh, here we see a huge customer participation and re-usage of our platform.

Customers always expect a personal and friendly experience in addition to the great product or service that they buy, and in return they are willing to reward businesses with their loyalty and referrals. This is all achieved through personalized communication, for which the backdrop will be a technology that empowers and drives interactions making the process friendly, intuitive and natural.

These technological innovations are always unburdening the way an Enterprise is to be managed. Entrepreneurship is much easier now than it used to be considering the lowering costs of starting a new venture or startups tapping on global talent through remote platforms, it also means that there is much more competition.

The top three challenges that entrepreneurs have to face include:

Passion- Passion towards ones domain always keeps you in the loop to look for industries that can be disrupted with mobile technologies. It also helps entrepreneurs take business decisions efficiently which are usually assumed difficult.

Fail fast and iterate- Building a less viable product quickly, analyzing it for its performance is always imperative.

The right team- Building the right team is about finding people with complementary skill-sets who have a shared vision, and who are fun to work with.

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