Interview with Tanisha Fagwani, Co-Founder & Partner at Stonks Studios

Tanisha Fagwani

An exclusive interview with Tanisha Fagwani, Co-Founder & Partner at Stonks Studios

Tanisha Fagwani, an entrepreneur, writer, and pop-culture nerd, is currently leading Stonks Studios – a content house of creative writers, visual artists, designers, editors and content creators with a deep understanding of internet culture.

With love, humor and collaboration, the confounding team has been owning and shaping the Indian web culture for half a decade.

Since its inception in 2021, Tanisha has played a pivotal role in establishing and growing Stonks Studios.

Along with her co-founders, she has successfully navigated the challenges of  the competitive advertising industry in India, leveraging their creative streak and her strategic acumen to position Stonks  Studios as a prominent player in the market in less than 18 months.

As of today, Stonks is a team of 70 members who  are disrupting the way we scroll and consume content.  They have captured the attention of both industry experts and the internet.

Stonks Studios has established itself as a trusted voice for notable Indian brands such as Google India, IMDb India, Swiggy, YouTube Creators, Flipkart, Amazon miniTV, FamApp and Lenskart.

Bootstrapped and in the green since inception, Stonks Studios is on track to notch an ARR of $1.5mn in the next fiscal, displaying sustainable growth while maintaining profitability.

Tanisha is committed to working with people across cultures and focuses on building inclusive teams with a key emphasis on women representation. Currently, Stonks has a 48% female workforce with 35% women in leadership roles.

With a strong command of operations and financial management, she excels in streamlining processes, retaining talent, and driving business growth. With over 7 years of experience in building and scaling startups, she is able to identify emerging trends and seize opportunities.

As an advocate of analytics, social listening, and data-driven content, Tanisha is forging ahead, poised to shake up this industry with her vision.

Ever since she was young, Tanisha was driven by her passion to sell and scale brands. It started at the age of 18 when she founded her first startup, EfgStore  – a pop-culture merchandise store to make some extra pocket money.

Five years later, EfgStore became a D2C brand that created, distributed, and sold 5,000+ products to over 18L B2C patrons.

With official licenses from WarnerBros & Disney, they created a distribution network of over 1200 A+ B2B retail stores across India which included the likes of Hamleys, Crosswords, Pantaloons, TheSouledStore, BookMyShow, and Superdry. Tanisha stepped down in August 2021 to scale more sustainable business models post the Covid-era.

As a result of her impactful work in the start-up industry, Tanisha has been bestowed with multiple awards individually, as well as for Stonks Studios and

Can you tell us about your journey as an entrepreneur and how Stonks Studios came into existence?

Tanisha Fagwani: I founded my first start-up – a pop-culture merchandise store, at the age of 18 because I wanted to make some extra pocket money. Little did I know I would go on to run it for 5 straight years and build it into a D2C brand distributing to 900+ A+ stores, license out from WB & Disney, create 5000+ products and sell to 15L+ B2C customers.

I stepped down in August 2021 to scale more sustainable business models post the Covid-era. I am a proud, proud ex.

Over the past 18 months, I have poured my passion into building Stonks Studios, a venture that embodies my commitment to data driven content infused with operations. As a part of the co-founding team of Stonks Studios, I have played a pivotal role in establishing and growing the company from its inception.

We have successfully navigated the challenges of the competitive advertising industry in India, leveraging my founders creative streak and my strategic acumen to position Stonks Studios as a prominent player in the market in less than 18 months.

Through this effective leadership, we have together overseen the development and launch of a niche agency leg that has captured the attention of both industry experts and the internet. We have been able to establish trust and retainment with the Top brands who are now becoming trendsetters and voices on the internet. 

What inspired you to venture into the world of content creation?

Tanisha Fagwani: From a young age, I’ve always been captivated by the power of words. The way they can shape ideas, connect people, and evoke emotions is simply enchanting. As I grew up, I found myself drawn to books, movies, and various forms of art that allowed me to explore different perspectives and worlds.

In the digital age, content creation became a natural extension of this passion. The ability to craft narratives, share knowledge, and inspire others through written and visual mediums is a privilege I couldn’t resist.

I believe that each piece of content is a unique opportunity to leave a mark, ignite conversations, and contribute positively to the vast tapestry of human expression.

Every day, I’m motivated by the thought that something we create might resonate with someone out there, helping them feel understood or sparking their imagination.

It’s a fulfilling journey, and I’m excited to continue venturing into the world of content creation to connect, engage, and inspire. I have always been attracted to the creator economy. The numbers excite me. The business excites me. 

Kindly brief us about your company, its specialization, and the services that it offers

Tanisha Fagwani: Stonks Studios – a content house of creative writers, visual artists, designers, editors and content creators with a deep understanding of internet culture. With love, humor and collaboration, the confounding team has been owning and shaping the Indian web culture for half a decade. 

We have captured the attention of both industry experts and the internet. Stonks Studios has established itself as a trusted voice for notable Indian brands such as Google India, IMDb India, Swiggy, YouTube Creators, Flipkart, Amazon miniTV, FamApp and Lenskart. Bootstrapped and in the green since inception

With having a decade long experience in social media content, stonks, at present, is a community of 70 creators wanting to make a brand stand out from usual generic marketing campaigns.

We want to solve for boredom on the internet for brands to coexist with other fun meme pages, or creator accounts. We bridge a gap between funny, nonsensical, silly content and brand guidelines to come up top-notch content for brands and personalities which is inline with the brand objectives

Stonks Studios is known for creating engaging and data-driven content. Could you share some insights into your approach to incorporating data into your content creation process?

Tanisha Fagwani: At Stonks Studios, our approach to content creation revolves around harnessing the power of data to create engaging and impactful content that resonates with our audience.

We believe that data provides us with valuable insights that guide us in making informed decisions about what topics to cover, how to present them, and how to optimize our content for maximum effectiveness.

It also gives us a deep understanding of what people are talking about, what is their sentiment around a topic and also helps creators have a different perspective.

Content creation can be a challenging field with constant innovations and evolving platforms. How do you maintain creativity and innovation within your team to produce fresh and engaging content?

Tanisha Fagwani: As we embark on the journey of building Stonks Studios, we have taken great care to shape our operating principles. These principles have been born out of the collective wisdom of our team and the lessons learned from our past experiences in this industry we all cherish.

While we already hold a deep passion for this business, we firmly believe that there is always room for improvement and growth. Therefore, these principles not only reflect our current values and ways of working but also serve as a compass guiding us towards our future aspirations as a company. 

At Stonks Studios, these principles will serve as the bedrock of our culture and the driving force behind our success.

Each and every one of us is called upon to embody and exemplify these values, as they will be instrumental in shaping an organization that we can all take immense pride in being a part of. As we continue to expand and evolve, our commitment remains steadfast in revisiting these core values annually, subjecting them to internal evaluation, and putting them to vote to ensure that they remain the guiding force for our collective endeavors.

Together, we aim to build a company that excels not only creatively but also fosters a sense of unity and purpose, making Stonks Studios a place where we thrive as a team and achieve greatness in our work.

  • Ideate freely, edit relentlessly.
  • Dare to be different; sameness is the enemy of creativity.
  • Cultivate a culture of continuous learning and growth.
  • Design with empathy, understanding the human experience.
  • Practice mindfulness; creativity thrives in moments of stillness.
  • Balance intuition and data; decisions grounded in both are robust.
  • Celebrate creativity in all its forms, beyond traditional boundaries.
  • Compassion comes first, everything else follows
  • Fail forward: Learn from mistakes and turn them into opportunities.
  • Question assumptions, challenge the status quo.

Stonks Studios likely collaborates with various brands and partners. How do you ensure that your content aligns with the brand’s message and values while still maintaining the unique Stonks Studios style?

Tanisha Fagwani: I take pride in saying that we understand the internet really well. We connect to the audience on each brand due to the careful allocation of talent.

For example, IMDb India team consists of cinephiles and cinema lovers that are well versed with both history and what’s on going. This helps create content that resonates with the brand’s audience. The admin voice is that of a cinephile which roots in community interaction.

Consistency in Values: We ensure that the content’s underlying values align with both the brand’s and Stonks Studios’ principles. This consistency in values enhances the authenticity of the collaboration.

Visual and Tone Alignment: We pay careful attention to visual elements and tone of voice. While maintaining our unique style, we adapt these aspects to match the brand’s aesthetics and communication preferences.

Quality Control: We focus on one thing at a time with only one message at the back of our head, Quality! Before finalizing any collaborative content, we conduct quality checks to ensure that it aligns with the brand’s guidelines and meets their standards for accuracy and professionalism.

What strategies do you employ to measure the success of your content and campaigns? How do you track and analyze the performance of your content to continuously improve your output?

Tanisha Fagwani: Well this process is a mix of experimentation, long term goals and backing our objectives and KPI’s with data and benchmarking.

Data-Informed Decision Making: We base our decisions on data insights rather than assumptions. The data guides us in refining content strategies and making informed adjustments.

Iterative Improvement: Using performance insights, we iteratively refine our content strategies. We adapt formats, topics, posting schedules, and promotional approaches to continually optimize our output.

Regular Reporting and Communication: We maintain transparent communication by sharing performance reports with our team and stakeholders. This promotes alignment, accountability, and collective learning.

The digital landscape is constantly changing, and new platforms and technologies emerge regularly. How do you adapt Stonks Studios’ content strategies to stay relevant and leverage emerging opportunities?

Tanisha Fagwani: This will sound a bit on the edge but by experimenting, failing and most importantly having fun. We are constantly listening to what the internet and its residents want. And then we are experimenting. Some days we are failing, some days we are learning. 

Embracing experimentation and learning is at the heart of everything we do at Stonks Studios. We approach each content project with an open mindset, unafraid to try new approaches and push creative boundaries.

Whether an experiment succeeds or not, there’s always a lesson to be learned – a valuable insight that guides our next step.

This mindset of constant learning and adaptation fuels our growth and innovation, ensuring that our content remains dynamic and resonates with our audience in meaningful ways. It’s the spirit of exploration that keeps us at the forefront of the ever-evolving digital landscape.

For example, at Swiggy we have already started integrating AI in our short format content. The audience has reacted positively and the industry is pretty excited that someone is trying to break through this. 

Stonks Studios has likely worked on a diverse range of content projects. Are there any particular types of content or subjects that you and your team especially enjoy working on?

Tanisha Fagwani: Absolutely! At Stonks Studios, our team thrives on the diversity of content projects we take on. We believe that each type of content and subject matter presents unique opportunities for creativity and engagement.

We’ve been so lucky While we’re adaptable and enthusiastic about all kinds of content, there are a few types and subjects that really resonate with us:

Trend Analysis and Topicality: Keeping our finger on the pulse of industry trends and sharing insightful analysis with our audience is something we find intellectually stimulating. Offering our unique perspectives on current events and trends is a way for us to contribute to ongoing conversations.

Community Engagement: We love content that brings people together. Creating campaigns that encourage user participation, interaction, and collaboration within a community is a dynamic and fulfilling experience for us.

Meme creation and absurd posting are also areas that we LOVE at Stonks Studios. Injecting humor, wit, and absurdity into our content allows us to connect with our audience on a lighthearted level. These types of content enable us to showcase our versatility and engage with our audience in a way that’s both entertaining and unexpected. 

With the rise of social media and influencers, user-generated content has become prevalent. How does Stonks Studios navigate the balance between creating original content and incorporating user-generated content into your campaigns?

Tanisha Fagwani: We acknowledge the power of UGC in amplifying our brand’s message and creating an authentic connection.

Our strategy revolves around carefully curating UGC that resonates with our brand’s values and style. We value the unique perspectives of our community, and by incorporating their content, we celebrate their engagement and involvement. Each piece of UGC becomes a testament to the community we’ve built.

However, while we cherish UGC, we maintain our creative voice. Our original content remains the backbone of every piece, ensuring consistency and reflecting the brand.

The admin voice we’ve cultivated acts as a guiding light, ensuring that even when incorporating UGC, our campaigns carry the same tone and essence. Ultimately, this delicate balance between original content and UGC is about synergy. 

What advice would you give to aspiring entrepreneurs looking to start their own content creation business or venture into the world of data-driven content?

Tanisha Fagwani: “If the idea of doing business attracts you more than the service or business you offer, don’t do it”

Don’t do it for the instagram bio, don’t do it because content is the new thing and followers feel good. Do it because it’s something you love and it fuels you – the force that awakens you with purpose and propels you from your bed.

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