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$24 million in the bank — NY social marketing startup Percolate sets its sights on international expansion

Com­mu­ni­ty man­agers and social media man­agers famil­iar with these pages will recall that we last report­ed on New York social mar­ket­ing start­up Per­co­late last Decem­ber, short­ly after it had suc­cess­ful­ly raised a tidy $9 mil­lion in Series A. This week, it announced that it’s raised an addi­tion­al $24 mil­lion in a Series B round led by Sequoia Cap­i­tal. Maybe co-founder James Gross’ goal to make Per­co­late “the sys­tem of record” for brands is already hap­pen­ing: invest­ment like that means a lot of con­fi­dence has been inspired.

New era social mar­ket­ing tech

Per­co­late isn’t a mere social media man­age­ment sys­tem; it doesn’t just let brands lis­ten to what’s going down on social media. It helps them root out, cre­ate and dis­trib­ute live­ly con­tent as well.

With Percolate’s tech­nol­o­gy, brands can cre­ate a cal­en­dar that lets them share poten­tial top­ics on spe­cif­ic days, find and look at con­tent relat­ed to the com­pa­ny name or prod­uct theme even when that con­tent is user-gen­er­at­ed or pub­lished else­where, and col­lab­o­rate as a team to cre­ate con­tent. They can also see clear ana­lyt­ics show­ing what’s doing well and what needs more atten­tion. The staffing agency Aque­nt, for exam­ple, says that Per­co­late slashed the time need­ed to post con­tent to its Face­book page and oth­er social chan­nels by half. Even the most bat­tle-hard­ened social media man­ag­er would con­cede that that’s an impres­sive fete.

Accord­ing to Gross, Per­co­late remains “real­ly com­mit­ted to New York” where it was found­ed in 2011 (most of its 100-plus employ­ee work there); how­ev­er, the new mon­ey will help it with inter­na­tion­al expan­sion plans as well as to increase brands’ under­stand­ing of what he calls “this new phase of mar­ket­ing tech­nol­o­gy.” That’ll involve ramp­ing up the company’s marketing.

Future plans

Mon­ey will also go into expand­ing Percolate’s part­ner­ships with con­tent providers such as Get­ty Images and devel­op­ing its “work­flow tools.” These include its straight­for­ward sys­tem for obtain­ing rights to user gen­er­at­ed con­tent as well as its smart­phone apps.

The Per­co­late board of direc­tors will now be joined by Sequoia’s Matt Dixon, who said: “Con­tent mar­ket­ing is now the most effec­tive way for brands to con­nect with their cus­tomers, and Per­co­late brings order to the chaos of doing so at scale.”

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