Label 59 is a web application that helps you to label anything interactively on your own in minutes. It is ideal for creating engaging presentations that have interactive labels attached to them.
We had lengthy and fruitful interview with Mr. ‘Shaantanu Hans‘; Co-founder and Lead Developer of the India (Jalandhar-Punjab)-based start-up “Label 59″; regarding who they are and what their company is all about.
“Label 59” is a web application that lets you label anything interactively. It is ideal for creating engaging presentations that have interactive labels attached to them.
Below is the full interview that we have conducted with Mr. ‘Hans’ regarding his web based start-up company “Label 59″;
1. What is it exactly that you do and what “Label 59″ is all about?
We are a Web Design & Development Company based in India. Our start-up Label 59 is a web application that helps you to label anything interactively on your own in minutes. It is ideal for creating engaging presentations (e.g. product feature demos, labelled diagrams for learning material etc.) that have interactive labels attached to them. These labels are hotspots on the photo and are represented by markers. You then define content for each of these markers by adding connectors (connecting lines emerging from the markers to pinpoint finer details), arrows (linear dimension tool to highlight dimensions), text blocks (animated blocks containing text), tooltips (a hover box with information about the item being hovered over) & details window (popup window within the presentation).
What you get as a result of all this is an impressive presentation that highlights the key points on your photo when the markers are clicked or when the mouse pointer hovers over them.
These presentations are easy to create, interactive, cost effective and they help you pinpoint the finer details on any photo by taking it to a whole new level.
Anyone with little or no technical knowledge, can create these presentations with our easy to use (DIY) Do-It-Yourself online application. You can even get these presentations made from Label 59 Design Team.
2. When has “Label 59″ been founded? And what stage is “Label 59″ currently at?
Our company was incorporated in 2002. The idea about Label 59 (our new start-up) originated in mid-2011 and the work started later that year. Label 59 was finally launched in July 2012.
Currently we are focusing on spreading the word about Label 59 and growing our user base by using all modes of marketing.
3. What is “Label 59″‘s business model and how does it work?
Label 59 has both free and paid plans (credits and premium) with restriction on the number of presentations / slides.
Under the credits option, users are charged on a per slide basis. The premium user get unlimited usage. All plans are available for periods of 1, 3, 6 and 12 months.
Academic Pricing Program is available for qualified academic users. We also have an extended free plan for students.
4. How did your team meet? And who in your team does what?
We are a team of 2 brothers (Shaantanu Hans & Vaibhav Hans), the co-founders of Label 59.
I handle the programming part … the coding behind Label 59, the aspect that is actually noticeable when you take Label 59 on a spin.
The aspect of Label 59 that you actually see i.e. the graphical user interface and the layout has been done by my younger brother Vaibhav, the designer at Seigospace.
All the other aspects have been handled together.
5. What, exactly, makes you different from existing options, what will make your product and/or service stand out in the marketplace? In other words what’s unique about you and what’s new about what you make?
We have not been able to find any other similar option so far. What our (DIY) Do-It-Yourself Application helps you do online, is something that people used to get done from professional web designers and developers. Our greatest USP has been to bring this flexibility to the user and that too at a fraction of the cost.
6. What is your growth like? And what milestones has “Label 59″ achieved so far?
We know there is a huge potential and we are slowly getting there. It has been little over a month since launch and we have been received very well. The response and the reviews so far, have been positive. The nature of the application is such that it fits well in different scenarios, age groups and work groups.
7. Who are your competitors? And what is “Label 59″‘s competitive advantage over them?
As said earlier, we have not been able to find any other similar option so far. Label 59 enables you to create engaging presentations but it cannot be compared with any other presentation tools out there. Even a single slide created in Label 59 can highlight more than the entire presentation created in the other tools.
8. What obstacles did you face and how did you overcome them?
We have not faced any major obstacles. Our greatest concern has been the HTML5 export and we are currently working on that. No doubt, marketing and reaching out to people is indeed a difficult task but I guess these things are a part of the cycle and we do not consider them as an obstacle. We have faith in Label 59 and are spreading our wings slowly and gradually.
9. What are the key things about your field that outsiders don’t understand?
Label 59 is a user friendly web application. With our intuitive set of controls, anyone using Label 59 can instantly figure out what each control does and how to use it. In every application, there is a small learning curve, the time you take to figure out where to do what. Also considering the response and the reviews we have received so far, I don’t think there are any as of now.
10. Why are you going to succeed?
Label 59 is a multi-utility product and can be used by anyone and everyone. In fact, the more people get to know about Label 59 by using it, the newer ways they can come up with, to apply it in there own different ways. This flexibility that we provide to our users is the most important factor that helps pave the way for our success.
11. If “Label 59″ succeeds, what additional areas might you be able to expand into?
There are a number of additional features that can be incorporated into the existing version of Label 59. So, first thing first, we would work on to improve Label 59, adding in everything that we can to make it a truly versatile product. We would love to enter into any related avenues that open up with the success of Label 59.
12. Why did you choose this idea and concept to build “Label 59″ based on?
We had come with a concept back in 2006 which involved adding markers on photos, however the other features and the end result were totally different … not even close to Label 59. We did devote some time on that concept but somehow did not complete the product due to the ongoing client projects that we were focusing on at that time.
Time went on and in mid-2011, I came across a working demo of that concept in my backup files while looking for something else. The perspective we had in mind when we had developed that was totally different from what was going on in my head when I saw that now … and the concept behind Label 59 was conceived. I and my brother worked on it and the rest is history.
13. What have you learned so far from launching your idea?
Developing a complete product always seemed to be a mammoth task. After having done that, we started the next step of marketing the product and reaching out to people. We knew that this was an even more difficult task than the first one. There was nothing new to learn from all this but we are certainly experiencing this firsthand now.
14. Six months from now, what’s going to be your biggest problem?
Managing the application, building a team, incorporating feature suggestions by our users and at the same time incorporating the long list of features that we already have, are all going to be the points of concern. Continued efforts on marketing and promotions are equally important and these cannot be ignored.
15. What’s the benefit for the customer/user?
As mentioned earlier, Label 59 is a multi-utility product and it benefits our users in many ways. Business Professionals can now get interactive and cost effective product presentations made in house and thereby save money and ultimately boost sales, Students can explain the features or working of any concept in their school projects, Teachers can create engaging learning material independently and with total control, Researchers can quickly highlight their research findings and Creative Professionals can add amazing level of interactivity and create stunning presentations in minutes for themselves or for their clients with our branding free option.
16. How did customers / users find out about you?
As of now, Label 59 is at a very initial stage. Customers / Users are coming to us in different ways. Our website has been featured on some blogs and Label 59 is gaining attention from there. As a matter of fact, this has been the primary source of all visits on our website. Also some people have tweeted about us and even that has attracted users.
17. Who are your current customers / users? Who are your target customers / users?
Our current users are people of all ages and from all walks of life. In a short span of time, our website has been visited from over 50 countries and more and more people are signing up.
Label 59 can be used by everyone from students, to teachers, to researchers, to creative and business professionals.
We encourage you to sign up (Visit http://www.label59.com/signup.htm for One-Step Signup) and see for yourself. I am sure you will be able to use Label 59 in one way or the other.
18. Where do new customers / users come from and what makes new customers/users try you?
Label 59 has been featured on many blogs and these have become the major source for attracting new customers / users currently. And being a product that targets all segments, it has appeared not just on tech blogs but also on blogs about education since it bridges that link between technology and learning. Apart from this, new customers / users are also coming from twitter, facebook and through word of mouth.
19. What do your customers / users say about your product and/or service?
Label 59 has been received very well so far. The responses and reviews are positive. We have received emails from people in different fields, who have seen the possibilities of Label 59 and are excited to use it in their own way. They have praised the work and have detailed different areas where Label 59 can perform an excellent task.
20. How are you going to scale?
No matter how much you work on the crucial factors that come with scaling or do the initial planning for handling growth, this is always an uncertain area. When it comes to handling large number of users in a running application, the challenges that come with it differ in different scenarios. It is a very delicate issue and we hope that our knowledge in this field helps us scale smoothly … fingers crossed.
21. What’s the biggest missing feature? The one thing customers/users keep asking for?
There have been no feature requests yet. The greatest missing feature in our opinion, as of now, is definitely the HTML5 export to make Label 59 published presentations compatible with iOS. We are already working on this feature in such a manner that the users will be able to export not only the new presentations that they create but also their existing presentations into HTML5, once the feature is fully incorporated.
22. Are you going to internationalize? And if yes how are you planning to expand your start-up’s operations accordingly?
Label 59 is already international. Since our launch in July 2012, our website has been visited from across the globe and our current users are spread all over. Seeing the nature of this application, we don’t think we need to set up office(s) at different locations in the foreseeable future and we can handle everything from our headquarters in India.
23. How big do you think you can get? Why? And how you are planning to achieve your goals?
We know there is a great potential for Label 59 and we are still figuring out how big the market actually is. The possibilities for growth are endless and many of our users have shared their opinions on the same. Personally we would want our each and every user to have a wonderful experience, no matter how big we become.
24. Are you looking to hire a new workforce? And if yes, what job vacancies do you currently offer and where can potential applicants contact you at?
It is too early to decide and we have not yet figured out the exact vacancies but we are definitely looking to expand our team by adding members from anywhere in the world. We understand that with growth we would require expertise and talent in different areas. We will post the details on our website once we finalize these requirements.
25. Are you looking for partnership opportunities or funding from Venture Capitals (VC) or other funding sources? Or your business is self-sustainable? And if the first option applies where can potential partners / investors contact you at?
Since incorporation, we have been a privately-held company (No outside investors). Though currently bootstrapped but with growth we would require additional resources both in terms of capital and manpower. We are open for partnership opportunities or Venture Capital funding. Anyone interested can contact us directly at mail[at]label59[dot]com.
26. What advice do you have for fresh entrepreneurs?
Always believe in yourself, be passionate about what you do and put in your best. Don’t give up if the end result is not what you aimed for. Many a times you are not able to pull it off in the first shot. Just enjoy the learning experience and continue to work until you reach your goal.
All the best for you venture.