Spredfast announces today a new round of funding, $32.5 million, led by a new strategic investor, Lead Edge Capital, the investors behind Marketo, among others. This latest round is nearly twice the amount of its most recent (February 2013) round of 18 million dollars. I caught up with Rod Favaron, CEO, earlier this week to discuss the latest news and what it means for one of the major (and remaining) independent providers of social media management software and services.
“We’re going to be spending a lot more on the product,” with new developers hired mainly in Austin, and they’ll be announcing soon the launch of several overseas locations. “With major global brands like British Air, we’ve made a promise to open offices closer to home, and we’ll be delivering on that promise.”
Even with the new funding, how does he feel about competing against such enormously deep-pocketed competitors like Salesforce, which acquired BuddyMedia in 2012, and Oracle (Vitrue)? Not to mention enterprise vendors like SAP, Adobe, Hootsuite and others who are growing and acquiring more and more pieces of the SRP (Social Relationship Platform) puzzle.
“My sales force has a big grin on its face when they’re competing against Salesforce” and other vendors. “If we look at the rate of change in this market, for example with Facebook, what you can now do, our competitors simply can’t move as quickly as we can…. Buddy was state-of-the-art when Salesforce bought them, but the platforms (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) are moving at 100 miles per hour. Buddy Media was more competitive seven quarters ago.”
Spredfast is focusing its innovations on two major areas: leveraging the targeting now more available from Facebook and Twitter, and with it the ability to promote content discovery and sharing, with more solid metrics of engagement, not just “likes” and fans, that build a solid rationale for content marketing.