Shark Tank India: The Marketing Platform

Pranali Tawte
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Shark Tank

Shark Tank India winners speak to Social Samosa, discussing how the show is not only a platform for funding, but a marketing vehicle that offers exposure akin to IPL, if leveraged in the right manner and within the stipulated time frame.

Shark Tank India, which was launched in 2021, has not only provided monetary assistance to Indian entrepreneurs and start-ups, it has given them an ocean of opportunities in terms of visibility and recognition. 

The show has clearly been successful in making conversations around ‘entrepreneurship’ and ‘startups’ more mainstream and its IMDb rating is 8.8/10. The show gained 1 million followers on Instagram in two years.

The second season of Shark Tank India, which recently concluded on March 13, saw a total investment of INR 83.28 crores. 

Social Samosa reached out to start-ups that gained popularity after being on the show to find out how Shark Tank helped them surf through tough macro-economic challenges by providing visibility, making them a part of pop culture. 

Shark Tank India - The Marketing Chapter

Instantly after the episodes were aired, a few startups like HAMMER, Nish Hair, and Manetain were a total buzz on social media.

Hammer, a D2C and fast-moving electrical goods (FMEG) brand, is one of the most successful businesses to come out of Shark Tank India Season 1. As Shark Tank rose in popularity, HAMMER did catch the limelight and that was reflected in a wave of awareness and tangible orders. Prior to the show, Hammer had monthly sales of INR 70 lakh. 

Rohit Nandwani- Shark Tank

Sharing how the show helped his brand, Rohit Nandwani, Founder and COO, HAMMER, said, “We closed INR 30 lakhs revenue in a single day and achieved INR 1 crore revenue in a day from the website. During the telecast month, we saw a 5X increase in the traffic. We held onto the spotlight and sold the maximum of smartwatches and electric toothbrushes. Within 6 months, we have tripled the business and are aiming to reach INR 30 crores for FY23, and INR 50 crores for FY24.”

Another start-up that made circles on Social Media was the hair extension brand Nish hair. Founder Parul Gulati's response to the Sharks resonated with the audience and this helped the brand gain more recognition. 

Parul Gulati- Shark Tank

Speaking about her experience, Parul Gulati, said “Participating in Shark Tank is a huge milestone for any brand. The platform itself gives tremendous visibility, allowing it to reach a much larger audience than one usually does. Prior to appearing on the show, Nish Hair primarily reached its target audience (women) through social media platforms, mainly Instagram. Giving us an average reach of INR 2-2.5 Lakhs.”

The brand saw an increase in over 1 lakh followers on Instagram after appearing on Shark Tank and queries flooded in. 

“Our DMs have crashed a few times and comments have stopped working because of the sheer volume of inquiries and questions from people trying to reach out to us. which I am extremely grateful for,” added Gulati.

Another hair care startup, Manetain, co-owned by entrepreneurs Hinshara Habeeb and Yuba Khan bagged an investment worth INR 75 lakh. The startup initially sold heat caps and later ventured into shampoos, conditioners, and several other hair care products.

Hinshara Habeeb and Yuba Khan, Co-founders, Manetain said that the benefit fades away. Ergo, it is important for brands to leverage the buzz right then. 


“We saw excellent growth in the first two years, going from INR 17 lakhs to INR 1 crore in sales. After the investment, sales have gradually increased, but the benefit is temporary and fades away, requiring the brand to maintain pace. It has not only opened a new customer base but a world of new connections from the industry,” said the founders. 

Also Read: Women’s IPL 2023: Brands put the spotlight on biases faced by women athletes in campaigns

A Tank Of Pop Culture

The show didn’t just end at SonyLIV. Whether it is Shark Namita Thapar’s iconic “Yeh meri expertise ke bahar hai. So, I’m out” or Aman Gupta’s “Toh hum bhi bana lenge” and Ashneer Grover’s “Yeh sab doglapan hai,” the conversations from the series made their way to the socioverse. The audience shared memes, GIFs and stickers on Twitter, WhatsApp and Instagram. 

SonyLIV maintained consistent engagement with the audience throughout the season with live updates, anecdotes from the Sharks, inspiring moments from the show, and highlighting each ‘deal’. To further connect with the audiences from non-business background, SharkTank also simplified the business jargon shared in the show for them. 

A number of creators and influencers such as Kusha Kapila, Malika Dua, Ashish Chanchlani, and more were seen creating buzz around Shark Tank.


From impersonating the sharks to how people’s daily diction has changed post watching the show, influencers have covered it all. Stand up comedians like Biswa Kalyan Rath and Rohan Joshi also joined the bandwagon.

StartUps' Social Currency

As show’s popularity rose, start-ups benefited from it by gaining more followers and visibility. While brands like Bummer, Winston and Nuutjob couldn't get all Shark deals but have leveraged the visibility provided by Shark Tank.

Underwear brand Bummer grew exponentially in terms of revenue, after its appearance on the show. It also leveraged the conversation on social media and added more to it by turning its Shark Tank pitch into memes and Reels on its social media pages. Its bio also reads, “As seen on Shark Tank India.”

Sulay Lavsi- Shar Tank

Sulay Lavsi, Founder and CEO, Bummer, said, “Appearing on Shark Tank has definitely had a positive impact on Bummer's social currency. It has been amazing to see the increase in our social media following and engagement since appearing on the show. Personally, seeing the impact that the show has had on our social currency has been one of the most rewarding aspects of appearing on Shark Tank. It has been a great boost for our brand in terms of brand awareness as well.”

Another brand that resonated well with the audience as it took them on a nostalgia trip was Skippi Ice Pops. First business to get an all-shark deal, it revived a childhood snack by making ice pops in liquid form and selling them to consumers at room temperature. They got a deal of INR 1 crore for 15% equity. After the show, the company saw exponential growth with an international presence today.

Ravi Kabra- Shark Tank

Ravi Kabra, Co-founder, Skippi Ice Pops, said, “For a company that serviced 20-30 orders daily we received 3000 orders in a single day after the episode aired live. Shark Tank has the most highly engaging and engrossing audience which is difficult to replicate even through normal TVC advertisements. Hence, it is an amazing opportunity for start-ups with limited marketing budgets.”

One of the most funded brands, Revamp Moto, a Nashik-based EV startup asked for an investment of INR 1 crore for a 1% share at a valuation of INR 100 crore. After a close fight between Sharks, Revamp Moto accepted the offer from Aman Gupta and Anupam Mittal. The duo invested 1 crore in the company for a 1.5% stake at a valuation of INR 66.67 crore. Ashneer Grover also claims to have invested in Revamp Moto after the show.

Pritesh Mahajan- Shark Tank

Sharing how Shark Tank is becoming a good platform for start-ups, Pritesh Mahajan, Co-Founder, and CEO, Revamp Moto, said, “The increased credibility that came with our participation in Shark Tank helped us gain more traction and attract more customers. As a result, there was a heightened interest in our vehicles and this directly contributed to an increase in sales. Shark Tank has become a significant platform for start-ups to gain visibility and credibility in the market.”

IPL Effect

With this, some start-ups believe that Shark Tank is becoming an Indian Premier League (IPL) of sorts for businesses who gain recognition, visibility and affinity by appearing on one national show. 

Nuutjob, a brand that covers male intimate hygiene run by the two sisters Anushree and Ananya, believes that Shark Tank does provide noticeability, money, brand value and sheer love from the people of the city or state you are representing, which is similar to IPL’s effect. 

Ananya Maloo- Shark Tank

Ananya Maloo, Founder, Nuutjob, said, “With the show airing, not just on OTT platform SonyLIV but also on Sony TV on prime time, the brand saw visibility that would have taken years for an intimate hygiene brand like ours to make. The concept was also a hit because you get to sell your brand without people thinking it's an ad and skipping it. You are the show and it's the best 10 minutes irrespective of the sharks investing or not to promote your brand.”

These entrepreneurs received INR 25 lakhs in funding for 20% equity from Sharks.

Another start-up Winston, beauty appliances company, also believes that Shark Tank is the new Indian Premier League for startups. There was a time when very few individuals were conscious of brand owners and brand stories but now with the means of Shark Tank, company stories are becoming beloved dinner table chats at plenty of households.

Just like IPL, Shark Tank is also becoming a group-viewing activity and this conversation stay with the family or friends for a long time. 

Due to this effect, Winston saw its Instagram profile gaining 4.3 million in reach, and its crew is working overtime to keep up with the demand for collaborations. Its founder Himanshu Adlakha told Social Samosa that saying their social currency is at its peak after Shark Tank is not an outrageous statement. 

Himanshu Adlakha- Shark Tank

“Not only did Shark Tank stand out in our hearts but also fared well in our accounting books! With an abundance of love, we got bountiful orders too with tremendous brand growth. Being aired on Shark Tank aided us with great visibility while driving high traffic to our website leading to a 300% increase in sales,” said Adlakha.  

Making A Difference

While other start-ups led to memes and GIFs, these start-ups started important conversations by appearing on a national platform. Atypical Advantage and Medulance were two such brands that were praised by all Sharks, loved by audiences, and clearly made a difference.

Atypical Advantage, a platform to ensure economic livelihood for persons with disabilities started by Vineet Saraiwala from Jharkhand, has suffered from low visibility since childhood. Atypical Advantage has helped over 1,000 disabled people and 500 artists with jobs, performances, and commissioned work. 

Vineet Saraiwala- Shark Tank

Vineet Saraiwala, Founder, Atypical Advantage, said, “Our website traffic skyrocketed to 15x, social media followers increased by 2X , sign up jumping to 10X and sales lead funnel jumping to 50X. Our corporate partnership doubled, sign up jumped 10X, Sales jumped by 20 percent Q3 vs Q4, website traffic was 15X vs DAU,and NGO partnership were 1.5 X.”

While Atypical did start a conversation about people with disabilities, it soon faded away. Vineet posed an important question here. 

He said, “Can we measure the impact within senior leaders of Top companies who had never thought of hiring persons with disabilities starting their journey? Can we measure the impact within a child in Kishanganj with Cerebral palsy dreaming of becoming the CEO of a Giant Company? Can we measure the impact within the society who used to look at a child with disability with a lens of sympathy turning into empathy? Can we measure the impact within students in schools, colleges getting inspired to start their own ventures which gives back to the society? Can we measure the impact of Governments who have woken up to work for Disability Inclusion within their states?”

Vineet said that while they have doubled social media followers what mattered more to them was challenging mindsets and pushing people to rethink. 

Another start-up that believes in making a difference was Medulance. Founded by Pranav Bajaj and Ravjot Singh Arora, it is a Delhi-based ambulance service provider on its mobile app and website in a bid to provide quick medical care to people. The startup raised a funding of INR 5 crores, the biggest offer in the history of the show, for a 5% equity.  

Medulance wanted to use the exposure to talk about an issue that mattered.  

Pranav Bajaj- Shark Tank

Pranav Bajaj, Co-Founder, Medulance, said, “Shark Tank has helped Medulance grow by increasing visibility, creating awareness about our services and validating partners and future customer’s trust. Medulance has seen a significant change in its social currency since our participation in Shark Tank India S2. For us, the impact of saving even one life via our exposure from Shark Tank India would be the biggest currency for the brand.”

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