Building something new!

Created on

June 20 2022

After a decade of working in content, technology and business, I’m building something new to run experiments in these fields that I love thinking about.

My goals are to 1) help tech orgs leverage content strategically, 2) understand the intersection of tech in government and business, and 3) share my knowledge as I try these experiments out.

These experiments are born out of my work over the last nine years. I’ve now been on all sides of the ‘content triangle’: strategy (figuring out what to produce so that it meets org goals); production (actually producing something great once); and operations (scaling production, without compromising quality).

The content triangle.
The content triangle.

In reality, this triangle is a bit broken. Those who commission/sponsor content have deep context on strategy that creators do not. Creators know what resources and capabilities are required for a piece of work, which commissioners do not. Marketers drive leads but may not build a genuine connection with their audience.

So I figured it’s time to scratch the itch. I left a great job with Grab and the Tech for Good Institute last month to try something new. Here’s where I’m starting out:

1. Help tech companies and organisations use content strategically

Every company wants to be a media company, but few know how to do it well.

Most organisations get that content is important, but aren’t sure how to execute it well. My experience has been that they prefer to outsource it to a PR or content agency. I’ve helped run one of those content agencies (GovInsider monetised its publication by writing bespoke content for tech companies, aka advertisers). That comes with risks and if not done right, the content loses its usefulness to the org and its audience.

Content can be a hit-or-miss. I’ve worked with more than 50 tech companies and sometimes it worked - like really worked - and sometimes it just didn’t. I have hunches around why and want to test them to find a repeatable way for tech orgs to use content strategically.

2. Understand and explain the intersection of tech in government and business

For the first seven years of my career, I wrote about tech in government. For the next two, I wrote about tech in business. I’m curious about the intersection of these two. How will governments’ use of technology affect how an industry operates?

We’re already seeing some answers from India, where UPI as a digital public infrastructure has shaped the fintech industry in many ways. The government is now looking to do the same in e-commerce with its Open Network for Digital Commerce.

I’m watching this space, and writing on this on my own platforms and contributing to other publications. My work draws on interviews with practitioners and experts, and my analysis of what is happening in the region.

3. Build my own business

I’m monetising these projects through my own operation! I’m consulting on content strategy for tech orgs, and writing stories at the intersection of tech in government and business.

It’s the best way for me to do the work I want to right now because it gives me the optionality to try a bunch of different things and learn from them, while giving me greater control over how I use my time (within some constraints obviously).

This is very much an experiment in itself and I’m not sure exactly which way the business will go. And while I go figure that out, I’m thinking of naming the company Placeholder Inc 😀

This is a culmination of everything I’ve learnt over the last decade. I’ve never been more excited to build something new!

If you’re working on any of the above areas, I’d love to work with you. Drop me an email at medhabasu09@gmail.com.