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A robust thriving universe of creative thinkers and go-getters | #CompanySpotlight

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Multia is an Indian creative consultancy born in 2006. They are a forward-thinking agency that “have used the power of design to help brands stand out in the market.” 

Constantly experimenting with the most advanced technology in order to find a solution for every business challenge, they are ranked among the top Digital Agencies and Branding Agencies in India and have created work for brands as established and varied as McDonald’s, Air Asia and Shopify.

Today we shine our company spotlight on them and ask Founder and Creative Director Samhita Bhatkar and Partner Taijasa Bhatkar what it is that makes them tick.

How was your company born and where are you based?

Based out of Pune, Maharashtra, India, Samhita decided to bring Multia into existence while talking to her dad about wanting to build a universe for creative thinkers – an entity that could stand proudly to present to the world what design means to her.

Derived from the term Multimedia, which is a combination of text, visuals, and sound, Multia stands strong today as a robust thriving universe of creative thinkers and go-getters. Multia is also a town in Finland and Samhita has always found intrigue in Scandinavian countries. So interestingly, that worked out well.

A design professional and connoisseur, Samhita has been the anchor to the design standards we have set as a brand and is the inspiration and push behind the goals we set. She has, since the start of the agency, hand-picked every member of the team to form what we have today.

Having gotten associated with Multia as an intern for her last degree project in Marketing, was Taijasa, but little did she foresee, the internship was just the beginning. Taijasa’s people and business skills seemed to be the missing piece of the puzzle. Finally, in 2014, Taijasa joined the team to be the driving force.

Since then, Multia has been unstoppable. The crossing of their career paths seems like fate, not only because we all had different ideas of where we were headed but also because our individual skill sets seemed to compliment the others with such ease. What we now witness is an unwavering force that drives each one of us towards our collective vision for the Group.

For every client we work with, we now design a universe for them that they can carry forward as their identity in the ocean of brands. There are millions of universes out there that we are yet to discover, but having a universe of our own, is something else. 

What was the biggest challenge to the growth of your company?

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Choosing the right team is something we have continuously put our efforts in. Sometime ago, we acquired another company to grow our team and functions. 

Due to some malpractices done by the other team we incurred massive losses and had to fire their entire team. Even after this setback, we got back on our feet in months to get our business back to where it should be. 

Which was the first huge success that you can remember?

After a couple of years of catering to an Indian audience, in 2013, we were recognised by one of the leading agencies in Singapore, who chose us as their design partner for their website. Soon after, in 2013, Manhindra, an Indian Multinational Corporate,  gave us the opportunity to build the website for the new product, Mahindra Comviva. 

What’s the biggest opportunity for you and your company in the next year?

As a part of the Multiversity Group, a learning and development consultancy, we believe in an Inside and Outside Transformation where we understand businesses from the inside to reflect it on the outside. Additionally, we aim to help businesses run their Brand’s DNA in their employees as well, through employee training and workshops. 

As a Brand and Design Consultancy, we wish to be able to make a strong brand out of businesses, to drive long lasting impact. This we are geared up to do because of our knack of industry and market research, understanding of markets and of course, the power of design. 

Can you explain your team’s creative process? What makes it unique?

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Our process finds its basis in research. Research. And then some more Research. We understand what drives a business, identify its mission, vision and purpose, find its personality and be equipped to reflect it on the outside. We are always eager to know what the market and audience wants. 

We then move on to building a mood board, be it for branding concepts or for websites and applications. Once we work with the client to understand which direction they like, we go on to building the concepts. To support our visual concepts we also build the client’s communication and content strategy to then carry that forward to all consumer and brand touch points. 

Like research, our process also finds its base in collaboration. The best ideas aren't often a result of just careful planning - they happen when we work collaboratively with our clients to develop their ideas and make their concepts a reality, with our own touch of creativity. We welcome solutions from each and every member of the team. We believe that each person brings a different perspective to the table. We believe we can come up with a huge range of potential solutions when we collaborate to arrive at the most appropriate answer.

How does your team remain inspired and motivated?

Our passion for design and the desire to add life into the digital space is what drives us. We are focused and collectively pay equal focus on every step in the process. From client briefing to design, development, QA, Delivery. We’ve got it all covered. 

Our ambition is to develop as a team and refuse to accept that anything is impossible. ​ We believe that a company that feels that it has reached its goal, will quickly stagnate. For us, happiness is not reaching our goal, it’s the journey there.​

How has COVID-19 affected your company?

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With everyone working from home, people across the globe understood the importance of having a strong brand and a strong digital presence, Covid provided a big boost to our business. A lot of companies, in the first year itself, approached us not only to build their brand or digital presence but also becuase they started to rethink their entire strategy. 

Which agencies do you gain inspiration from? Do you have any heroes in the industry?

In Multia we always refer to and look up to graphic designers heroes and always study their approach closely to improve ours.

Brands we look up to:-

Pentagram - https://www.pentagram.com/

Wolff Olins - https://www.wolffolins.com/

Hello Monday - https://www.hellomonday.com/

Media Monks - https://media.monks.com/

Collins - https://www.wearecollins.com/

For knowledge and insights we look up to: 

The Futur - https://thefutur.com/

What is one tip that you would give to other agencies looking to grow?

  1. Your website is the first place people interact with your digital agency. It is a way to build your business’s credibility, so make sure to always reflect yourself true to who you are and your work. 
  2. Hire the right team members:- Focus on creating a strong company culture and team bonding and continuously offer competitive salaries and benefits to make your team feel taken care of. State flexible hours or remote opportunities when available. Stay transparent about growth paths and always build  local reach. 
  3. Do justice to your work - offer testimonials and case studies
  4. Use the power of social media to grow business

How do you go about finding new clients/business? (Pitching, work with retainers, etc.)

Most of our clients reach out to us through our website , LinkedIn and Websites like Clutch and Creativepool. We are proud of the fact that we have never gone after clients and most of our work comes in through referrals and word of mouth. We hope it stays the same in the future.

What’s your one big hope for the future of the industry?

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Technology and design are now playing a crucial role in businesses. Integration of both will be the future. It will now only provide ease of use, it will also be revolutionary in terms of its impact. When booking tickets, ordering food or taking a loan at just a click of a button, design plays a crucial role everywhere. We believe that the reason we design or need to continuously think creatively is because it is important to make huge leaps and create impact. 

Do you have any websites, books or resources that you would recommend?

We have multiple resources we refer to when researching and looking for inspiration. Some of them are:-

Dribbdle - https://dribbble.com/

Figma Community - https://www.figma.com/community

The Futur - https://thefutur.com/

Other platforms we regularly go to are:-

Medium - https://medium.com/

UX Planet - https://uxplanet.org/

UI8 - https://ui8.net/

Aiga Design - https://www.aiga.org/

Awwwards - https://www.awwwards.com

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