An Interview With Prateek Shah – The Founder of Digital Defynd
In the last few years, there has been tremendous development in Digital Marketing and we have seen so many professionals making career out of it. Though, there are a lot of internet marketers out here, only few has excel their skills and have added value to the online industry.
Last week I got a chance to meet one of the ace digital marketers who has influenced hundreds of bloggers and internet markers and have helped many corporate companies such as NASSCOM, SBI, City Bank, Tata and many more to promote their brand. He is none other than Mr.Prateek Shah, the founder of Digital Defynd, an online community for internet marketers.
Needless to say that he is a well-known face in the online communities and have a great fan following. I was able to have a brief discussion with him about the current trends and challenges in digital marketing. He revealed some of the top secrets that he uses to take Digital Defynd where it is now. So, without any further delay let’s start with the interesting interview with Parteek.
Riyaz: Hi, Prateek, welcome to my blog and thank you very much for giving me few minutes of your valuable time for the interview.
Prateek: Hi Riyaz, I am honored to be here with you.
Riyaz: Please tell us something about Digital Defynd and the idea to create a community like Digital Defynd for internet marketers?
Prateek: I have been a digital marketing trainer for more than 5 years and one of the most important challenges I faced was keeping up with the changes in the digital marketing environment. This prompted me to build a network of digital marketers, and that’s how Digital Defynd was born. We are now close to 15,000 marketers who are part of this network and happy to help each other out.
Slowly Digital Defynd has grown from being a community into becoming a marketplace that helps companies find digital agencies, freelancers, hire professionals and find relevant training for domains of their interest.
Riyaz: Despite having an engineering degree what led you to become a Digital Marketing Trainer?
Prateek: In my 3rd year of engineering, I had realised that I will never be able to take up a core engineering job. That led me to think of other options, which lead me to a Banking role right after college. Less than a year of banking told me that I will be much better off doing something creative. That pursuit made me a PR professional, from where I made inroads into social media. Love for social media grew into full blown passion for Digital Marketing and the affinity towards people and sharing with the world made me a trainer.
Riyaz: What kind activities you are using for the promotion of Digital Defynd?
Prateek: Many, I’d like to list them down point wise.
- Group – Since we are a community first and anything else later, we have an active Facebook group where members participate, interact and help each other out.
- Guest Authors on website – With close to 100 authors on our website, the network effect comes into play, with each other bringing in some of their native audience to this network as well
- Focus on Quality – We don’t go by SEO rules when creating content but just ensure that we focus on quality. That allows us to not just draw people but to make them stay
- Email Marketing – One of our strongest fortes, we try and get as many of our users to become part of our mailing list which allows us to build a relationship with them over a long term.
Riyaz: Do you have some blogs/portals that you browse regularly to keep yourself updated, if yes, please share with our readers.
Prateek: I go through lots of portals and blogs to keep myself updated. I have to credit my friends who keep sharing really interesting articles that I end up reading regularly.
Riyaz: Digital Defynd has a huge organic traffic, which monetization methods you are using, and which monetization method works best for you?
Prateek: Actually, we don’t get huge organic traffic, and I am happy that happened because that made me understand that monetizing traffic directly is not the smartest strategy in the present day world and people need to focus on intent driven traffic. We just want the most relevant people to come to our website, and have slowly developed our own affiliate models to monetize the same. Other than that, we host sponsored articles and banner ads from clients in this domain as well.
Riyaz: In a very short period of time Digital Defynd has become a brand and has become very popular among internet marketers and bloggers, how a newbie should approach for branding like DD?
- Unique proposition.
- Lots of offline and online effort.
- Knowing enough people to first get the ball rolling before making others join in.
Riyaz: What were the challenges you faced in the starting of your career as an internet marketer?
Prateek: Lots and lots of them. Where to begin, what to learn, how to learn, learning what will help later, how to know what you are learning works. I think digital marketing is far tougher than people make it out to be. One needs immense dedication and efforts to get somewhere in this domain.
Riyaz: According to you how much a good web hosting plan is important for a successful blog, and what are the top 3 hosting providers you would recommend for our readers?
Prateek: I think there is no one plan that suits all. Choosing one depends entirely on what kind of a website you are building, speed you require and investment you want to make.
- Since I am not very tech savvy, I like GoDaddy. I’ve hosted with them for many years now and I appreciate the support they provide.
- Digital Ocean has gained a lot of popularity in the recent times and for people who can manage the technicality involved can stand to gain a lot with the flexible plans provided by it.
- Amazon AWS is a great option for people looking to speed up their website and I know a lot of people using the CDN service from them.
Riyaz: How SetMyDestiny readers can stay in touch with you and special message for the online community here?
Prateek: I invite all SetMyDestiny readers to join our weekly newsletter that I personalize and send each week. Wish everybody the best with their digital marketing dreams and may SetMyDestiny move quickly towards its own destiny and set it for others too! 🙂
Wrapping it Up!
I hope this discussion will help you understand the need of the hour in Digital Marketing and making your brand rather than making money. If you have any further query, feel free to ask in comments, I will be happy to assist you.
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