Atlanta: Marketing Technology Startups Review
Sorry for the delay. Yesterday got away from me. On Wednesday evening I got to pinch-hit for Brooks Robinson (CEO) of Springbot at the recent Atlanta Interactive Marketing Association #StartupSlam. The event was held at the Atlanta Technology Village, MCed by one of my favorite people in world Dave Favero, and David Cummings provided the opening remarks. The only way it could have been better is if everyone would have gotten a chance to not hear me say “crap” and actually get a chance to witness Brooks drop a mic about what Springbot really is.
Atlanta has truly become the marketing software (technology) capital of the world BUT which of this startups will be next? (Disclaimer, again, this is not a community board, its my blog, I can say whatever I want, and its an opinion blog)
I always thought Rigor was a simple pinging technology to tell you if a website was up and I never really got it, until now. Websites have plugged in all kinds of things that effect the performance (speed) and most importantly the user experience. Bottom line Rigor optimizes web performance so that users have a better experience and that is awesome. I also happen to know that Mr. Cummings really likes this one.
I’ve watched this one evolve over the last year since Flashpoint (Georgia Tech) and honestly my interest has always been that I really like Kurt Uhlir, how could you not, the dude wrestled an alligator (I am serious). They are advancing an idea that makes tons of sense “Together Marketing”. Companies have channel programs and issue press releases, but how many of them truly collaborate on cross (together) marketing programs. Sideqik wants to enable more companies to market to each others audiences (together).
Close to my own WhatCounts heart. Synapp.io is chasing the email delivery, compliance, and validation markets. This is not an new idea (it isn’t) but I like the angle that they are taking. Companies like WhatCounts fire customers for spamming issues, that is true, sometimes it is the only answer, but Synapp.io is rethinking this. They are providing a service to email marketers to stay in compliance proactively, not manage delivery after you are already in trouble. Both founders are crazy smart, the problem is real.
In full disclosure, Devon the CEO of InsightPool is one of my closest friends and I have a death grip on my InsightPool stock. InsightPool has created a google like search function from the Twitter universe, allows you to target individuals down proactively (placing them in what they call a bundle) and then drip market (marketing automation) to those targeted individuals to drive engagement. Love this one, the issue, gotta be able to prove ROI, they will have to add revenue attribution to the product.
eCommerce Marketing Platform. They are targeting the 150,000 Magento Commerce stores initially (which is smart). They aren’t building marketing functions like people think, this is a platform play. They integrate with Magento Commerce store data, integrate with various digital marketing tools (think Kevy), then use tracking data and purchase data to drive #MarketingRobotics (this isn’t just automation, it is intelligent recommended marketing actions). Of course I love this one.
Agency Spotter (www.agencyspotter.com)
There are 1,000s of marketing agencies, and the founder commented that most marketing executives can only remember two agencies, the one they just fired, and the one they just hired. They are intermediating themselves into the agency selection process. Felt like Yelp for marketing agencies. The founder was impressive, the interface looked good, and clearly the audience was interested (I mean hated this idea – ha). The idea makes sense, but I am sitting here thinking “what is the revenue model, how big could this really be?”
I had to do some homework on this one today. Honestly, I didn’t get it during the pitch. The founder was impressive, the interface looked awesome, I just didn’t understand it. After looking into it – feels like Google Analytics for Phone Calls. Where are the phone calls coming from? What are people saying? What campaigns are working? The cool thing is it is built on top of Twilio (which I have recently become very interested in – a former WhatCounts leader left us to go start a company built on Twilio). This feels like a real business, they have customers, seemingly low friction for signup, I just don’t know a lot about this. I will investigate and report back.
Badgy is Facebook (Social SEO). Quick story. I remember seeing Badgy a bunch of times and never understood it, then one day Rob says, “Social SEO”, and I went, boom, got it. Lesson: communication of message matters – A TON. I almost jumped up and hugged Rob when he didn’t say “Mark Cuban”. Rob seems to be really focused on eCommerce now, which is awesome. So, Badgy is providing Social SEO to optimize Facebook engagement for eCommerce companies. That is a business.
New word alert! Agile Marketing. I liked this one for several reasons, first, Scott is extremely impressive, second, the interface is sick (in a good way). It felt like Basecamp for marketing departments. I like the vertical focus, I like that they are hooking themselves to a term that will resonate, and it is a real problem. As Scott said, most marketing departments don’t really know who is doing what programs, and which campaigns are working. I haven’t seen it yet, so I will come back and update after I meet with Scott.
Lot’s of cool companies, great leaders, and it is fun to be part of this ecosystem. Atlanta is truly blessed with a Marketing Technology cluster. I will continue to watch all these companies and report back on their progress.