With all the planning and preparations for the user testing of their solution, DeepFlow team was excited to reach out to the farmers in their network. However, the advent of the second wave of COVID-19 and the Kerala government imposing lockdown from the beginning of May meant that their plan for a physical orientation program had to be dropped. Although the core team was looking to go for an online presence, the advisors and mentors recommended implementing the outreach programme on All India Radio (AIR), which the team eventually carried out as their first pivot.
The team partnered with AIR Kannur on their coveted Kisaanvaani programme and prepared a 30-minute program in Malayalam where they explained the solution model, the agriculture officials and technology experts described the support system in place and its significance for the farmers, and included testimonials from progressive farmers sharing their experience as to how they are leveraging services of the startup to their benefit.
The approach resulted in a massive outreach to around 4000 farmers from 80 panchayats in Kannur, Kasargod & Wayanad regions. Since then, there has been a steady inflow of interest from farmers from the southern parts of the state (Idukki) who have reached out to the team to become a part of their journey. This pivot was an eye-opener as it showed the significance of radio (AIR) among farmers in this digital era. Successfully implementing this outreach program with zero marketing expenditure resulting into an expansion of the customer base is the learning the team would like to leverage on in its future outreach campaigns.
DeepFlow Technologies is one of the 25 semi-finalists of CISCO Agri Challenge. Founded by Vishnu B Raj, Nandakishor M, Atthri Anand, and Sayanth NS, it aims to assist farmers cultivating spices/cash crops in India with a unique platform to adopt proper crop production management to improve their revenue and quality of produce. To know more about the other semi-finalists, click here.