Video First Marketing Became New Way To Grow Raghav Animaker

In an exclusive interaction with BW Education, Raghav, Founder & CEO, Animaker speaks about company’s journey, success plan and business model

Raghav is the Founder & CEO of Animaker, a company in the creator economy with more than 15 million users and a suite of 7 brands in the design, video and animation space. An Engineering and Management graduate from KCT & MIT, Chennai Raghav at the age of 17, created the first product in IoT and went on to win several awards. His dream was to become a scientist, and so, for most of his research, he started using high-end visuals as part of the presentation. But the twist in the story was, more than his science, the visuals were highly appreciated. Raghav started his career as a Technology Analyst with Infosys where he handled projects for Bank of America. He also headed India’s production house Bode Animation which went on to attract some of the best players like Google, World Bank, McKinsey, Amazon, Unilever, etc. It was during this period Raghav understood the challenges and the massive explosion of visual needs across the world. This led him to start Animaker, with a mission to offer everyone, every company builds creative content to meet the growing demand of video marketing. He won the CII startupreneur award and also Smart CEO gave the most promising startup award. In 2022, G2 awarded animaker as the 4th best design product in the world. Raghav is passionate about initiatives like Say No to Cancer, Education for all. Love Fitness, Fashion, Movies and Memes.

Edited excerpts of his recent interview with BW Education:

Describe Animaker’s current growth rate and its journey so far since the start?  

Animaker was launched in Sep 2014 as an open beta model to the public. Since its inception, our journey has been steady and effective with each goal closer to the aim of making it the salesforce of DIY creative space. With a growing workforce, Animaker continues to evolve and contribute well across users from various market segments.

Within a span of 18 months, Animaker hit over 500,000 users in February 2016; launched language support for more than 3 billion people in August 2016 and launched Vertical Video Maker in April 2017.

Animaker hit over 2,000,000 users in July 2018 and launched YouTube Thumbnail Maker app via Picmaker in August 2018.

The company introduced Animaker Voice – for human-like voice-overs in November 2020; launched Vmaker open beta – Screen recording & Video Messaging platform in January 2021 and launched – Next-Gen Video Marketing software in July 2021.The firm launched Makers Academy with new features and free courses in April 2022; launched Animaker 3.0, a new version with focus on video-first marketing during the Animaker Summit in July 2022  and launched iOs app with newer upgrades and easy to use features for users to create creative content on the go in July 2022.

The company entered $15 billion video-making app market in August 2022.

Is the success plan moving as per the fixed goal for the financial year? Have you been able to tap a higher margin in the first half of the year?  

Yes, as mentioned our growth was 2.5 fold especially at the starting stage of Covid where digital adoption and video became the main source of communication. This year’s growth is very strong too, we have crossed 15 million users so far. Especially with more money floating in the startup market, the mindset towards spending on marketing is on top priority for a lot of startups. Video First Marketing became the new and faster way to grow.  

Compared to last year our margins definity got thin with multiple modes of investment in hiring and marketing. But overall the numbers look much more positive than before.  

Our growth plan is a bit aggressive in the US market and we are hiring as we speak.

What makes Animaker’s business model different from other start-ups?  

Animaker’s model is very different from B2B SaaS companies. This we call it Creative SaaS which is a combination of B2B2C. So the playbook is very different we focus on product led growth and growth hacking. All our products are free for a lifetime which is great for the consumer market and reduce the friction to try and pay if they found value.  

Also, DIY creation is a new way of content creation, sharing requirements to agencies or designers and waiting for weeks are gone. Also learning Adobe-based pro tools and years of training is not a great solution for the masses. Now almost one in every family has a Youtube channel and creating videos for Instagram, Snapchat has become regular work for lot of people.  

Both video consumption and video creation are surging like never before.  

How do Animaker and its brands generate income? Who contributes more towards the profit? Companies or individual users?  

Animaker is a freemium business model and we have brands namely – Picmaker, Vmaker,, Steve AI, Animaker Voice and Animaker Deck. Each targets a specific problem in the creative market. Both companies and individuals contribute to our growth. We solve the core customer’s problem and give it out for free, but anything addon or additional resources or more features customers need to upgrade.  

We also give discounted prices for edu and non-profit organisations who are a big part of our growth.  

85 per cent of Fortune 500 companies’ employees use Animaker. We do land and expand model by helping the small teams in big companies and slowly grow from there.  

Plans for funding and any idea of IPO? Or are there investors already?  

So far Animaker is a self-funded and profitable company. The market is very hot right to raise money but our business is not an expense-intensive model. We are not planning to raise any money in near future, but we do have a plan for IPO and maybe one round of funding before the same like Microsoft or Salesforce did.

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