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Facebook has launched ‘Nayi Shuruaat’, a new campaign to celebrate the small businesses of India, and the resilience they’ve shown to pivot and make a new start or a ‘nayi shuruaat’ amid the deepest crisis the world has seen in recent times.

As India shut down in response to the pandemic, the internet remained open with the Facebook family of apps playing a key role in connecting people, businesses, and communities. At a time when Covid-19 adversely affected small businesses, many of them turned to Facebook to keep their operations going by moving online. Nayi Shuruaat celebrates many such real stories of optimism, strength, and economic recovery from across the country, many of which was unveiled during the Facebook Fuel for India virtual event on December 15 and 16. 

The film:

Speaking about Nayi Shuruaat, Archana Vohra, Director, Small and Medium Businesses, Facebook India, said, “Facebook’s goal has always been to enable new opportunities for businesses, especially for the more than 60 million small businesses across India. In the face of so much uncertainty, we’ve remained inspired by how small businesses have reinvented themselves by moving online, many for the very first time. Every day we see amazing examples of SMBs using the Facebook family of apps to pivot, and make a new start, and grow through this particularly challenging time. This film is about celebrating their economic recovery and nayi shuruaats, and we hope their resilience will inspire millions of other small businesses and entrepreneurs across the country.”

Nayi Shuruaat is launched with a film that focuses on three unique small businesses — The Moms Co that sells toxin-free mom and baby products, coffee brewing small business Sleepy Owl, and Doodlage, a sustainable fashion brand. While coming from distinct industries, all three businesses bounced back from the pandemic by leveraging the strength and reach of their Facebook and Instagram communities. 

"We started The Moms Co three years ago with a Facebook post and built a strong community of mothers across India that has helped us become a leading brand for natural, toxin-free, and safe personal care products for moms and babies. Covid brought our expansion plans to a sudden halt, forcing us to re-evaluate our strategy and figure a way to make a new start amid the new normal. We turned to our Facebook and Instagram communities to grow in these times. Over the last few months, we've done regular engagements, interactions, and Lives to engage, learn, and even institute new product development processes. We've seen our business grow 200% pre-Covid levels, and Facebook has been central to this nayi shuruaat," said Malika Sadani, Co-founder, The Moms Co.

Kriti Tula, co-founder, Doodlage, said, "Doodlage was born with the dream of bringing together fashion and sustainability. The drive behind Doodlage resonated with people on Instagram where ideas and communities based on passions come to life. Our products are made by upcycling factory waste, re-cycling second-hand clothing and industrial waste. When Covid struck, many brick and mortar stores struggled or went through a worse fate. Connecting with our digital consumers became more important than ever. Our business has grown three times of what we were before the pandemic, and our usage of Facebook and Instagram has more than doubled in this span. With the support of our community on Instagram and Facebook, we were able to bounce back in these tough times, and deliver not just across India but also expand to Australia, Dubai, Singapore and Europe.”

"Sleepy Owl started with the vision of building an indigenous coffee brand in India. We're a digital-first brand and while starting out used the Facebook platform to build the brand and spread awareness, our community on Facebook and Instagram helped us grow from a small kitchen in Dwarka, Delhi, to retail shelves across India. Covid was a bolt from the blue and disrupted so many of our plans. But when the world shut down, our Facebook and Instagram community came to our help yet again, helping us make a new start. Since March, we've used Facebook and Instagram a lot more than we did before the pandemic; we've reached new customers and coffee-lovers, taken orders online and served more 150,000 cups on the back of digital," said Arman Sood, co-founder, Sleepy Owl.  

The Nayi Shuruaat film has been made by Wunderman Thompson and the campaign will run across print, digital, and television.

In the last few months, Facebook has taken numerous steps to support the economic recovery of small businesses. As part of Facebook’s $100 million global grant for small businesses, the company announced a $ 4.3 million grant for small businesses in India. Facebook has also taken its industry-leading skilling programmes online to provide continuous support to small businesses through the pandemic. Its flagship skilling programme ‘Boost with Facebook’ is now being delivered through Facebook Lives in both English and Hindi to reach out to a larger audience. The company recently rolled out a local SMB Guide in Hindi and English to help small businesses move online seamlessly reaching out to nine million small businesses across India. The FB Advertiser Vintage programme, focused on skilling young businesses, also pivoted to webinars, skilling more than 3000 businesses this year. To build the ecosystem for small business growth in the country, the VC brand incubator programme that collaborates with venture capital funds also went virtual and has tied-up with seven venture capital funds so far.