A journey that started with a tiny startup by broad-minded – Sneh Soni
Sneh Soni, Founder & CBO of FreeStand (Digital Product Sampling Platform for FMCG). She is also an LSR alumna and a passionate marketer. FreeStand empowers FMCG brands to distribute their product samples to digitally targeted clientele. Through this platform, a brand can directly associate with the targeted client, enable a product trial, measure feedback, and develop a purchase decision at scale.
Sneh’s father is always a businessman but entrepreneur-minded woman; Sneh Soni has never seen her father having a grown business in her career. It is said that if you are determined, then everything is possible. After all, her efforts and hard work paid off.
“FreeStand has given me tremendous amounts of learnings.
We’re struggling every day coming out of it, have new learnings. It’s magical. I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.
I am very humbled to have shared a few learnings here. “Sneh says
She has completed her Bachelor’s in Statistics from Lady Shri Ram College for Women, Delhi. After that, she banded with Konark Sharma and Kavach Chandra and started growing the FreeStand Sampling organization. It’s a B2B SaaS platform that enables FMCG brands to provide their products to their customers digitally. Sneh fetches in her data analytics expertise though the men contribute their technical knowledge. Sneh and Konark met when they both were working on a book project, whereas Konark and Kavach were pursuing computer science together, and also they both were classmates of each other.
She said,” FreeStand serves FMCG enterprises, SMBs, and D2C brands. Digital sampling is the most effective way to launch a product or to build customer relationships. We have a solution for FMCG products of all shapes and sizes.”
She started collecting investments from friends and family, but as a professional investment, FreeStand has received MeITY’s Tide 2.0 scheme. Gradually many more investors include Dr. Krishna Nehra, Supriya Kumari, and Mamta Nehra, also participated.
FreeStand has a team of 8 people at the present moment, which is working with nine FMCG brands across four different categories and has evolved the product with over five iterations.
In this startup, companies include Anmol Industries, Keeros Foods, Soch Foods, Wild Vitamin Drink, Evocus Alkaline Water, etc., amidst its clients.
SaaS for digital sampling
FreeStand, being a SaaS company, is sampling the product for product sampling for a domestic market; Sneh believes Freestand helps brands spread to all people and has no direct competitors.
“FMCG marketers are the sharpest of any industry considering the impact they have had on society. So to build marketing software for this industry is both challenging and exciting simultaneously,” says Konark Sharma.
To emerge in the business sector, there must be confidence in yourself. Otherwise, people retreat at the rate of risk. Having a genuine reason makes you enough confident and passionate to work hard. Challenges have to be faced if any action is taken. She also faced many challenges, but she believes and took it as both a challenge and an opportunity.
She avouches that starting a venture and becoming successful is challenging; being a woman navigates some male-dominated areas, adding mainly insolubility.
She threw light on the bitter fact behind the venture, she says, “We were looking to launch our own D2C FMCG brand, and while planning the marketing operations we wanted to highlight the taste as a USP, and that is when we realized that there was no effective way to execute a digitized sampling campaign. The manual sampling method didn’t align with our digital-first brand strategy, and that is when we started to build for digital sampling. It was much more intuitive for us to build for digital product sampling compared to building an FMCG brand.”
She said,” Nobody can mind your business more than you can mind your business. So focus on managing your business.
To progress swiftly, the firm is working hard to grow globally; at the present moment, the firm plans to expand, covering the Southeast Asian market before 2022.