Interview with Meher Gupta, Founder and CEO, Contemporary Connect
Meher Gupta, a two-time founder and entrepreneur of luxury branding and talent management agency – CONTEMPORARY CONNECT and BBLOOM – The Floral Frame, a luxury flower, gifting, and décor company, is one of the most firebrand entrepreneurs in the digital business space.
With over 8 years of experience and various prestigious accolades to her name like the WEF Award, Meher caters to the digital marketing needs of elite national and international brands, including Swarovski, Imperial Air, Kangaroo Kids, Frontier Raas, Skin Story, and Grey Goose, among a fleet of other premier luxury brands.
Meher, now based in the UAE with offices in India, has a diverse global educational and professional background from reputed universities like Lancaster University and Regents University in the UK.
A master of all – her expertise ranges from real estate, aviation, and FnB to fashion, lifestyle, and cosmetics.
Her adaptability, creative direction, production, management, and networking skills, have expanded her clientele across the globe where she has lent her expertise to notable personalities like Manish Arora and Rahul Mishra, and hallmark events like the Paris Fashion Week.
Her Décor venture BBLOOM has exceptional demand from clients and is a regular gifting choice for luxury weddings and events, so much so, that her décor services have bagged her a permanent spot at events held by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Can you tell us about your background and what led you to launch Contemporary Connect?
Meher Gupta: Afters my masters in Luxury Brand Management from the European Business School in London, UK, I kickstarted my professional journey as a marketing specialist catering to build and amplify the brand – Michael Kors in India. I also got to work with brands such as Jimmy Choo, Bottega and Villeroy & Boch.
During my stint with these brands, I realised that they were running to multiple agencies and precious time was lost in communication and management, at the end, results were not achieved.
Looking around, back in 2014, I realised that there is no agency/solution set up for 360 degree marketing requirements. That led to the outset of Contemporary Connect.
It’s a 360-degree comprehensive solution for brands and individuals, that are looking to satisfy all their marketing requirements via one contact person.
Easy as it may sound, we have multiple departments that cater to design and ideations, events, digital support including social media and performance marketing, a PR & media focused wing as well as content/copy developers.
We have recently started something called vendor management which helps brands with their printing/merchandise and other 3rd party solutions.
Please tell us a little about your entrepreneurial journey
Meher Gupta: As a young and first-time entrepreneur, the journey has been thoroughly enriching. I started my my first company – Contemporary Connect when I was in my early 20s’, an age when people hardly know their life’s calling.
My family and friends did call me insane when I decided to do this, but I think it worked out well in the end J
You have recently expanded in Dubai, kindly brief us about Contemporary Connect, its specialization, and the services that it offers.
Meher Gupta: Our first global expansion came with Dubai as we feel the growth curve in cities like Dubai is still intact and we intend to grow fast in that region.
Dubai lays out access to key markets and emerging economies in the Middle East, South Asia and Africa and also connects you with Europe easily.
We are looking forward to working with clients and developing long-term, comprehensive branding strategies that click in the foreign land.
In Dubai, we are targeting a millennial and Gen Z clientele. We are providing integrating innovative business strategies and work approaches.
We have developed narratives that have a human and sensitive message to connect with people. As there is a growing need to humanise the message and create a more relatable tone.
How do you ensure that your recommendations are tailored to each client’s unique situation and goals?
Meher Gupta: Everything begins with a deep dive into the brand and trying to understand the key offerings and also the target clients.
That is the first step to ensure tailored marketing strategies. If we have worked with a similar brand or that particular industry – it always helps J
We provide tailor-made solutions to our clients depending upon the price points. Then we internally organise a knowledge session among us and the brand to understand what is our client’s product/service and who is their target audience.
My highly-talented team and I try to create a distinctive presence in an overflowing marketplace.
How do you stay current on industry trends and best practices in order to provide the most up-to-date advice to your clients?
Meher Gupta: In this fast-paced world, it is essential to evolve along with their industry. Failing to respond to new developments and changes in demand can result in client loss. So, here are a few ways we stay current on industry trends:
- Paying attention to social media. We have customised our feeds on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram so that we can easily scan the relevant and trending topics.
- Signing up for newsletters of companies we look up to
- Keeping a close watch on our competitors
- Conduct timely surveys to know the industry better
How do you build long-term relationships with your clients and continue to support their growth over time?
Meher Gupta: Effective client management is integral in our profession. It helps to maintain a long-term relationship and build a strong bond.
Most of our clients have associated with us through references from our other patrons. We treat every brand as if it is our own company.
Over time, they have built trust in us. We constantly remain in touch with our clients until we deliver exceptional results.
Sometimes being available demonstrates that your client’s project and satisfaction are pivotal to you. We never set any unrealistic expectations.
From the very beginning, we remain open and honest with our clients. We always explain to our client what we did, why we did it, and how we came to the decision. Such communication with the client makes them feel involved in the whole process.
What are your success tips for young and aspiring entrepreneurs
Meher Gupta: Being an entrepreneur is easier than ever before in the digital age when we have a series of bankable schemes to scale up our businesses.
Anyone having an out-of-the-box idea, financial assistance and a reliable internet connection, can become a business mogul. You just need to make the right move and be persistent towards your goal.
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