Vikas Garg gets candid with us about his social impact platform, and the power of user-generated content, crowd-sourced opinions and picking the right partnerships.
We’re all for adopting new sustainable practices but if you’re not sure where to start, Abillion might just be your new go-to app. It’s a platform dedicated to empowering conscious choices and promoting a more sustainable world. The website and app provide a space for people to discover and review vegan, cruelty-free, and sustainable products – making it easier for individuals to support these businesses making an impact.
Vikas Garg, the brain behind this platform, takes us back to its roots. He shares how he aligns passion and purpose and uses user-generated content and crowd-sourced opinions to build a community.
5 things we learned about Vikas Garg
#1: He transitioned from a career in finance to social impact
Vikas spent his entire career in finance, working in investment banks and hedge funds. However, he felt a strong pull to align his work with his values and passions, which centred around his love for animals, the environment, and activism for social good.
#2: The 2016 US election was a wake-up call for Vikas
The election and its subsequent revelations about social media’s negative impact on society, misinformation, and data privacy issues was a turning point for Vikas. He became obsessed with the idea of creating a platform that would drive social change and benefit the world.
#3: He taps into user-generated content and crowd-sourced opinions to stand out from the rest
With its global community of users spanning 173 countries, the platform offers a diverse range of content related to sustainability and social good. Every few seconds, users from different parts of the world create content, fostering a rich and dynamic space for information exchange and idea-sharing.
Through this, Abillion enables individuals to contribute their perspectives and knowledge, making the platform a valuable resource for anyone seeking to make informed and conscious choices. Additionally, the crowd-sourced opinions on sustainable products and initiatives empower users to make ethical decisions while promoting transparency and accountability among businesses and organisations.
Abillion’s commitment to this strengthens its community and amplifies the collective impact of individuals striving for a sustainable and socially responsible world.
#4: Vikas innovated and used scrappy methods to hire his first software developer
He attended a coding boot camp for three months to better understand the process of hiring an entry-level coder. Despite feeling out of place and unsure of his abilities, he persevered and found Jonathan, one of the best entry-level engineers in the course. Jonathan joined Vikas in building Abillion, and they worked together for the next five years.
In the early stages, they faced significant challenges, with only one piece of content coming in per day. Vikas and his team had to adopt various methods to attract users, such as attending festivals, events, and engaging with animal rights groups. Many people didn’t grasp the concept initially, and some dropped off quickly. However, a few passionate individuals believed in the mission and contributed substantially to the platform’s growth. Over time, more people started to discover it, leading to its expansion and increasing impact.
#5: Vikas stresses the importance of selecting the right partnerships
This can be a crucial factor in growing a business, providing authenticity and faster traction compared to ads or influencers. Abillion’s journey began slowly with limited user engagement, but it found success by partnering with animal sanctuaries and rights groups. This helped spread the word about the platform to a passionate and relevant audience. They focused on working with non-profits aligned with their mission, leading to significant user acquisition.
Abillion’s approach to growth was different from traditional marketing. They emphasised gamification, rewarding users for sustainable choices and posting about them on the app. This strategy fostered a sense of fulfilment and connection with their cause, motivating users to use the platform and support the mission. As a result, the company made a substantial impact without relying heavily on expensive marketing campaigns.
Discover more about Vikas’ inspiring journey on Launchpad’s Good Business podcast episode.