by Thanya Kishore
Meghana Musunuri was a typical female entrepreneur in India. Born and brought up in Medak, she received a good education and spent time abroad both studying and working. Eventually, she decided to return to India and make a difference in her native country. After teaching in London for more than eight years, Meghana opened the Fountainhead School in Hyderabad in 2009. Meghana was smart, driven and passionate, but like many of her contemporaries in India, she needed guidance on how to use the web to broaden her business and her education mission. To help Meghana and the many other women entrepreneurs like her, Google has recently launched Women Entrepreneurs on the Web (WEOW).
WEOW is Google’s initiative as part of it’s business diversity strategy aimed at helping women-owned businesses grow their online presence. The program teaches participants on how to use web-based technologies to improve and grow their businesses. WEOW is divided into five different units or “circles” designed for entrepreneurs with varied degrees of online presence and expertise. Entrepreneurs at various stages in their startups can enter the program through any of these circles.
1.Building an online presence: creating a website, a YouTube channel, and a business page on a social network like Google+
2.Collaborating effectively: tools like Gmail, Calendar and Docs
3.Connecting with customers: hosting Google+ Hangouts, creating and distributing targeted offers and discounts
4.Promoting your organization: online product demos, creating viral videos on YouTube, advertising through AdWords and AdSense
5.Tracking and optimizing your online presence: Google Analytics, Google Alerts, ripples on Google+, the +1 button, webmaster tools
The program is designed for both the urban and rural audiences where customised solutions are provided for each target group. Launched in Feb 2012 in Hyderabad, the program has a pan India presence with over 600 participants from across the country today. The WeOW team has been reaching out through various outreach programs and online trainings via Google+ which have been appreciated by the participants. To quote Mona Ranadive, a recent outreach program participant, “ It surely was a wonderful event ! Hope I will very soon join the world of tech savvy women thanks to WeoW team”.
WEOW has successfully been launched in Russia and Singapore as well. For more updates on WEOW India, visit their website, check out their Youtube channel or add the WEOW Google+ Page to your circles. If you’re located outside this region, but is still interested in participating in the forthcoming programs, please feel free to enter your details on this form and someone should reach out to you.