Buddy Media, a company that provides Facebook Page and social media management tools to brands, has raised $54 million in Series D funding led by GGV Capital with Institutional Venture Partners, Bay Partners and Insight Venture Partners. This brings Buddy Media’s total funding to just under $90 million. GGV partner Jeff Richards has joined the Buddy Media Board of Directors. One of Facebook’s first ad sales execs, Kevin Colleran, has also joined the company’s board of advisors.
Buddy Media is best known for its all-in-one social media management system to help create, manage and track social campaigns on Facebook. With regard to Facebook, the platform lets brand managers agencies create, manage and track Facebook pages in a variety of languages to drive and increase user and brand engagement. Users don’t need to have any prior FBML knowledge to create pages on Facebook and can create sleek and interactive pages fairly easily.
But Facebook isn’t the only social media platform that brands need to engage; Twitter has also emerged has a powerful communications tool. And Buddy Media also offers a Twitter Management System as well. As CEO and founder Michael Lazerow tells us, it’s no longer just about Facebook, and as brands engage across a variety of channels, Buddy Media will provide them with a SaaS to manage this. He added that as Google+ scales and eventually adds a brand and company feature, the company will look to provide integration with the social platform.
Earlier this year, Buddy Media acquired social analytics tool Spinback, which develops a social commerce widget allows consumers to share products and purchases via Facebook, Twitter and email. This product is in the process of being integrated with Buddy Media’s SaaS
Of course, as more brands look to social media for engagement with consumers, Buddy Media is reaping the benefits. The company’s revenue has more than doubled since the end of 2010. Last year, Lazerow told us that Buddy Media was on track to make $20 million in sales, so revenue could be at least $40 million.
Buddy Media has added close to 200 new customers in 2011, including brands, retailers and media companies such as Ford Motor Company, Hanes, ESPN, Hearst Corporation (read more about that partnership here), and Virgin Mobile USA.
Buddy Media’s employee headcount has grown from 40 employees in 2009 to almost 200, and the company opened a London office this year as well. Recent hired include a CFO, Dennis Morgan, who led corporate finance and acquisition efforts for Yahoo.
Lazerow says the company is constantly evaluating a few things: how do brands better target content on a Facebook wall or on twitter; how do they get the right content to the right person, and how do you leverage the social graph to make all os this happen. He explains that for large brands and companies, social media monitoring is complicated by provisioning, auditing and scaling across various countries. Buddy Media makes this process simple, says Lazerow.
And Lazerow says that has the company continues to grow, this capital will help scale development, global expansion, hiring, sales, acquisitions and more. One of the challenges, he says, will be hiring the right people, but he plans to double the company’s headcount in the next year.