Hello! Who are you and what business did you start?
Hey, I am Tarun Lachhwani and the co-founder of Filmbaker, a Video Production Company based in Bangalore.
Filmbaker offers end-end production right from conceptualization to production. We cater to every category of video-making like Digital Ads, Corporate Films, Event Aftermovies, 2D/3D Animation, Motion Graphics, Photography, etc.
We have successfully delivered over 1,000 stories for 250+ clientele, some of which include Google, Kingfisher, TKM, Cure.fit, Meta, and Country Delight.
What's your backstory and how did you come up with the idea?
Our journey began back in college where Gaurav, Rakesh, Soman, and myself started making short films.
We, the quartet used to make short films on social issues with impact while in college.
Recollecting those days, we began our baby steps with no prior experience in filmmaking and eventually ended up making over 80 films through college and winning two National Awards.
That’s what inspired us to begin Filmbaker, not the awards; but the passion for storytelling.
Our initial funding was about 4 - 5 lakhs (INR), starting in 2017, being in a service industry did not require a huge investment but the consistent will to keep getting better at what we do. In FY 20-21, we clocked over 3Cr and are en route to cross 5Cr this year.
Take us through the process of designing your production company.
As we are in a service-based industry, and video production, we follow a specific process.
First, we understand what the client requires. It is in the ideation phase that we pitch different narratives for the story describing the requirements they have.
One major factor that stood out to me as a leader was the value of consistency and frequency. Stay hungry and innovate.
We detail down our concept note in the form of a script which then leads to creating a visual storyboard to align all stakeholders on the end outcome.
That’s when we execute the final delivery - that is the video.
Describe the process of launching the business.
This is an interesting one, and for maybe a lot of entrepreneurs out there, our launch wasn’t a calculated one with a lot of metrics involved. It was the sheer passion for storytelling that led to the start of Filmbaker. As the saying goes, if you are good at something don’t do it for free, we are good at storytelling and we brought that to life via Filmbaker.
There is a dire need in the market for storytellers since that is a core to any communication and we help brands achieve that through our videos.
On October 1, 2017, we officially launched. Having our website set up, using social media, and listing in local directories allowed us to be found.
Perform thorough research, understand the ins and outs of the industry and narrow down on the significant problems customers face in their day-to-day lives.
Additionally, from the initial stage, we emphasized delivering value to every client we approached. The company made every call and sent each mail to a potential client with the intent to add value to the client’s business.
Since launch, what has worked to attract and retain customers?
Every pitch made by the company was done with an idea curated specifically for the client. This helped us reflect on the strong cultural and ethical foundation of Filmbaker.
We often came across brands that didn't realize the underlying problems in their brand message and narrative until we stepped into the picture. That's when we realized our job was to act both as an internal and external creative agent and outline key problems in the branding of our target clients.
Furthermore, we ensured setting up aggressive deadlines. In the world of media, it's all about timing. One may have the world's best idea, but it would be of no use if not acted upon quickly and turned into a consumer-friendly product.
Therefore, Filmbaker has always maintained this creative environment filled with a sense of urgency and a strict emphasis on quality to deliver premium videos consistently and promptly.
Our biggest channel for customers to find us was LinkedIn, Instagram, YouTube, and organic traffic via SEO.
All these strategies help us maintain a fine online presence.
How are you doing today and what does the future look like?
As we speak, Filmbaker has a strong clientele of 250+ brands and a dedicated team of 35 strong employees spread across various departments. We are picking up pace in acquiring creative mandates from brands.
Despite the pandemic, we made admirable progress in delivering premium quality videos.
Speaking of the present, we recently moved into our new office space. Here are a few glimpses:
In the future, we aim to increasingly incorporate technology into our video production process, providing visual reality and augmented reality video solutions to businesses.
Through starting the business, have you learned anything particularly helpful or advantageous?
One of the biggest challenges in start-up and growth has been the need to unlearn and relearn the ways of business.
Success in any type of business depends on the flexibility you as a company offer to your clients. The audience today is ever-evolving and businesses need a dynamic approach to remain competitive.
Furthermore, one as an individual must keep their mind open. The game here is not to keep up with the competition but rather to dominate it. Your business needs to continue exploring new ideas, concepts, and ways to do business.
One major factor that stood out to me as a leader was the value of consistency and frequency. The ability of a video production company to deliver premium quality videos consistently and in the shortest possible time is a game-changer.
What platform/tools do you use for your business?
The post-production team extensively makes use of Adobe Creative Suite.
As for email marketing, we use Apollo.io.
What have been the most influential books, podcasts, or other resources?
Atomic Habits has been a great read.. As one of my favorite quotes from the book says.
"Every action you take is a vote for the type of person you wish to become.
No single instance will transform your beliefs, but as the votes build up, so does the evidence of your new identity".
Advice for other entrepreneurs who want to get started or are just starting out?
Entrepreneurship boils down to the ability of individuals to make decisions and stand by them. It is a vector that requires both a unique idea and a strong vision.
In the pursuit of success, the company vision is what sets the direction, and money is just a by-product.
It is very important for you as an entrepreneur to identify a major pain point of people in the market. Perform thorough research, understand the ins and outs of the industry and narrow down on the significant problems customers face in their day-to-day lives.
Upon successfully identifying the pain points, develop a product or service that solves the problems. A critical aspect of starting in the world as an entrepreneur is understanding that a company is a product of its culture, thus paying close attention to developing a piece of healthy and cohesive machinery in your organization.
We can follow:
- Customer-centric companies know - users are the only source of growth.
- Think 10X, think in long-term growth - Bold goals paired with a far-reaching vision.
- To begin with, identify the problem before jumping to find a solution.
- Hire and retain exceptional talent - Fill in with the right people and provide them with opportunities to grow.
- People-centered approach - A company that attracts, satisfies - retains the best talents.
- Company over Team over Individual - The company's interest comes first - Period!
- Speed over Perfection - Perfection is the enemy of success. Perseverance will always be a better solution than perfection.
- Speak your mind - Be clear about your opinions.
- Owner Mindset - Act like an owner.
But most importantly, take that first step. Everything else becomes super easy once that first step is done and dusted.
Are you looking to hire for certain positions right now?
Yes, we are on a constant lookout for exceptional talents, and if you are someone who loves storytelling, video editing, or writing scripts. Send us your portfolio at [email protected].
Where can we go to learn more?
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