[Interview] Ashish Virmani, Freecharge on social media marketing for start-ups

In a flourishing e-commerce industry, start-ups stand a chance of getting lost with marketing budget constraints. To stay ahead of the curve, Freecharge got into growth hacking for marketing on social media.

Ashish Virmani, Marketing Head, Freecharge speaks about what’s next in social media marketing for start-ups.

What is the next trend that you witness in social media marketing for e-service/e-commerce platforms?

Users on social media have started favourably responding to exciting content from online brands. Looking at this, content is going to be to key to building and engaging communities. If brands will have a transactional tone with its communities then the audience will reciprocate transactionally.

What kind of a role did social media play in Freecharge’s brand building?

Building buzz around the brand through sharing transmissive content has been a huge part of our brand building efforts. When it comes to effectively seed that content, social media plays the biggest part.
If you come up with a new e-commerce or e-service startup, which are the 5 elements that would be a must

If you come up with a new e-commerce or e-service startup, which are the 5 elements that would be a must follow for your social media strategy?

Some key elements would be

a) Being very clear about having a personality for the startup – define and document that and give it to the social media team. That will be the starting point to building distinctiveness for the brand.

b) Generate content for the user which is actually useful or aims at the connecting with the user at some level.

c) Focus on TATs to respond to users.

Why are e-service websites shying away from picture oriented platforms such as Instagram, Pinterest and Snapchat?

Brands will move to where the consumers are. At this stage some of these platforms are still niche and appealing to a certain demographic which is not as mass as say Facebook. For a mass brand like us, still the lowest hanging fruits are Facebook and Twitter.  ​

With increasing dynamicity of social media platforms, do you think start-ups should refer to platform agnostic content?

Absolutely, platforms are just carriers. A good idea should be able to travel across. Soon there will be digital ideas which might crossover to offline channels as well.


A writer by Karma, grammar Nazi by heart and traveler by hope, Saloni loves to pen about anything under the sun. With six years of journalism experience under her kitty, Saloni has tried hands on various beats including – Social Media, e-commerce, Mobile, Indian radio, Advertising, Food and Travel. Writing for various national and international publications has given Saloni an understanding of the science of social media.