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Social marketing startup Percolate expands its team as more big names take a shine to it

Social media managers interested in new ideas might wish to take a look at the progress of a New York startup which has gone from strength to strength in 2013 by helping brands create engaging content on social networks: Percolate, which we featured back in August.

Simplifying the permission process

Co-founded in 2011 by fellow New Yorkers Noah Brier and James Gross, Percolate moved into the world of user-generated content, another phenomenon brands tend to slobber over – it’s just good for business to see ordinary people enjoying your product. The more skeptical social media manager might be thinking that this isn’t such a big deal – after all, rival startup Chute (also founded in 2011) has been helping brands harness user generated content, too.

But Percolate’s co-founder and now President, James Gross, insists that, unlike the competition, his company’s solution simplifies the cumbersome process of obtaining user permission radically and eliminates legal issues. Literally, a few clicks and it’s done.

Onwards and upwards

In addition to a new smartphone app that lets brands upload images to their Percolate media library directly from a smartphone (great if a firm is holding an event it wants to share), the startup bagged a handsome Series A round of $9 million in November.

The algorithmic engine Percolate uses to scan the Net for brand-relevant content so effectively has attracted some big-name clients to the startup, American Express and GE among them. The investment, says co-founder Noah Brier, is evidence that the social media market is red hot as brands begin to understand that, with Twitter’s sales push and Facebook’s IPO, social is the future of marketing.

He told AdWeek:

“Brands have been looking at social for a while now and realize changes need to happen. The lifeblood of social is content and the bottom line is that none of it would exist without brands creating content organically on social.”

The Series A round was led by CGV Capital and Brier says that the hefty investment will be ploughed into growing the startup’s 28-strong team, with some serious hires in both the engineering and sales sides being especially high in the list of priorities.

Most social media managers would probably agree that this social-savvy startup is well and truly on the rise.

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