Added on August 1, 2018 INS Correspondent
Sisters collaborate for ‘Mausam Selections’, launch it via Instagram
Srinagar: A lot of us view the concept of “sibling partnership” as sharing the last cookie in the cookie jar instead of fighting over it. But these siblings are taking it a step further — by starting companies with each other.”Sisters are doing’ it for themselves,” or so the song goes, especially when it comes to business. Families doing businesses together is nothing new; in fact, family businesses are pretty common. But, there’s something particularly special about a successful sister partnership.
In the entrepreneurial community, some say sibling partnerships are stronger than any other kind because siblings have known each other their whole lives. Others advise avoiding sibling partnerships at all costs, otherwise, there’s no good way to separate business from family.
In January 2017, Sanna and Sabah realized their pull to start a company — and the idea immediately unfolded. They launched Mausam Selections on Instagram. “The urge to start a business was always there since our childhood. We would always discuss ideas of business, so with the help of our brother we decided to do something of our own and made it possible,” said Sannah.
They started their company with a total investment of 7500 INR. They made an account on Instagram, WhatsApp, Gmail and Facebook, and spread the word among their friends and acquaintances to get connected with more and more people. The honesty and trust are there regardless, and that’s the biggest thing in business. With trust comes ease and respect. “We value each other’s opinions and what we both bring to the company. We haven’t encountered any difficulties working with each other so I am hoping this continues. We complement each other very well. We will always rely on each other and trust the other’s advice,” they said.
“The initial phase was not very good in terms of sales or profits, but it taught us a lot of things about business and proved fruitful in terms of experience”, Sabah said. The initial stage for every business is very crucial for its survival. It can decide sometimes decide the fate of the business. It is when the support of every single person looks like achieving a milestone and their first supporters were their parents, “Alhamdulillah, our parents gave a lot of support since the start. They showed their faith in us and it surely wouldn’t have been possible without them,” they note.
There is no doubt that there are very few people who make their living on Social Media compared to those who waste their time and talent by scrolling down the screen into oblivion for what seems like an eternity. While some think of Instagram as entertainment, others think of it as one of the best platforms for startups. “Instagram reaches a number of people especially youth who are our main target. Youth is generally more interested in shopping and staying updated in terms of fashion. It’s a sort of market and it’s also easy to use and reach, for both sellers and buyers. So Instagram is the best platform for this purpose.” Sannah said.
Although they face tough, times they know it is not the end. “It happens a lot that you receive orders and when we send them for delivery, the customers won’t show up, mostly because of strikes, curfews or other disturbance like internet ban. It really gets difficult that time but we have no other option but to wait for the restoration of the internet.” Sannah said with grim. “Our work gets affected, our delivery process gets affected and obviously customers get affected. But we are thankful to all of our customers who always support us and trust us.” she continued.
They always encourage each other. They change their strategies according to the market trends to keep up the pace. People usually don’t buy costly products over the internet because of the deceptive experiences and rumors but at the same time, they want the quality products at low prices, “So that’s what we do”, Sabah said, “selling the quality products with minimum margins. And sometimes it is not about any particular product which has good sales in the market as compared to others, it is about the seasons, like during July, August, and September, we have the great demand on bridal and wedding dresses and other products,” Sabah explained.
Mausam Selections is one of the top online shopping companies in Kashmir now. How from just an Instagram account it reached this place? “Be very clear about your skillsets and your weaknesses – address the weaknesses from the outset so they don’t become a problem at a later stage,” they note, “If you have a passion for it everything will find its way just hold on, don’t ever let anybody belittle your ambitions and remember life is full of struggle so don’t let that struggle have any negative effect on your ambition. Research your market as much as possible, talk to your target market, look at competitors and ensure you have a unique selling point. Most importantly, be open to change. You may have a path in mind but you never know what direction the business will end up taking. Ensure that you can work with your sister on a business level and be practical.”
Their future plan is to expand the brand and hopefully make Mausam Selections a global event as they have a great demand from countries India, Pakistan China Nepal, Saudi Arabia.