Investing in Wishlink

Helping creators drive commerce

17th October 2022

Link please!

Aditi read the top comment posted by one of her followers on her latest video on Instagram. She wanted to know where Aditi had purchased the lamp visible in the background of the video she filmed in her living room. “It looks so beautiful! You always get the best things. Where can I buy this?” said another comment that garnered many likes. She was increasingly coming across such comments on her Instagram as well as on her YouTube video comments. It’s a similar story for thousands of content creators and influencers across India, who have become a source of inspiration for their followers to discover great products and services. They often share their opinions and purchase links with their followers, promoting a brand or product or sending traffic to an ecommerce destination.

The creator revolution is truly on the rise as India’s content consumption statistics continue to grow. It is the largest consumption geography for YouTube, which sees an estimated 600M+ users each month spend nearly an hour on it daily. Instagram also sees 400M+ users monthly consuming content from their favorite creators. All this is leading to growing affinity towards creators and we are all influenced by what our favorite creator eats, wears, and does. Over time, creators tend to become de facto experts in their respective domains like fashion, fitness or cooking amongst many others. However, we felt that in spite of being a significant source of influence and owning the most prime real estate on the internet (user attention), creators don’t often capture their fair share of value. This is reflected in the fact that influencer marketing today in India is a smallish $120-150M revenue pool (~3% of digital ad spend in India), and is restricted to the Top 1-2% of creators in India.

When we look at this behavior from a consumer lens, gathering trusted recommendations is an important task when kickstarting the purchase journey for most consumers. Or sometimes, which is very often the case in fashion for example, users just want to be inspired or are looking for styling recommendations. According to many surveys, 55%+ of social media users engage with brands on social media and use social media to discover products - this is significantly more pronounced in GenZ shoppers. Overall, with growing content consumption, consumers relate to the content creators they follow and creator-led recommendations could be a very powerful tool to drive sales for brands.

Today, to monetize their recommendations, creators use traditional affiliate programs and put up multiple purchase links for viewers. Personally for them, it is a logistical nightmare to partner with multiple individual brands. Brands struggle with attribution in a world where pixels and cookies are dying, and end up using ‘brute-force’ frameworks like coupon codes. Downstream, users have to open multiple links and visit many pages to identify the right product they were looking for. We strongly felt this is a terrible experience for all stakeholders and significant value is waiting to be unlocked here, especially in the context of India’s $70B+ ecommerce market (and poised to grow 2-3X in the next 5 years).

We had been on the lookout for a team that solves for creator-led commerce for over a year. We then were lucky to meet the WishLink team - Shaurya Gupta, Divyansh Ameta and Chandan Yadav - and were immediately excited by their deep insights about the industry and creator pain points, as well as their data driven and iterative product building approach. WishLink is enabling creator-led commerce through personalized storefronts curated by influencers, with a tech stack that drives transparent and measurable attribution, and thus creator payouts. The team is building towards offering creators access to the largest selection of brands and products to work with, to maximize their earning potential. We felt this approach was starkly different from the prevailing paradigm of fixed monetary incentives and can make WishLink the platform of choice for both brands and creators.. Even in early pilots, WishLink built a seamless product that delivered at least 30-50% more efficient user conversion funnels for brands.

On the technology front, WishLink is building a deep product stack that solves end-to-end for brands; from inventory sharing and selection, workstream & logistics management, to performance measurement and analytics. These factors are key for brands of all scales and categories to explore creator-led sales as a scalable, profitable, and prominent growth channel. Influencers get to work with an intuitive, self-serve platform akin to an ecommerce website with an array of features to engage with their followers and custom dashboards to track their earnings and insights. This enables them to focus on what they love doing best, creating amazing content and experiences for their followers. Overall, we were excited to see their obsession with creator success, and their alignment with our belief of solving for creator and brand pain points through scalable technology.

As a result of partnering with Wishlink, many creators have also seen their follower count grow manifold within a few months of working with Wishlink. Today, Wishlink works with 100+ content creators and 60+ brands (including the likes of H&M, Westside, and ecommerce platforms like Amazon, Flipkart, Ajio). Brands are loving the integrations, with 2M+ users visiting their platforms, and much higher quality traffic, which results in higher conversion and lower RTOs / better economics.

We are immensely excited to partner with WishLink by leading the $3M seed round in the company. With all the right ingredients in place, we are confident that WishLink will play an important role in driving the creator economy and become an industry-defining company for creator-led commerce.

(Left to Right) Shaurya Gupta, Chandan Yadav, Divyansh Ameta; Founders, Wishlink(Left to Right) Shaurya Gupta, Chandan Yadav, Divyansh Ameta; Founders, Wishlink