GroSocial, a startup that makes social media marketing software, announced today that it has closed a $450,000 round of seed funding, led by the Kickstart Seed Fund, with additional contributions from Monarch Ventures, Rock & Hammer Ventures as well as several angel investors. With its new funding, the startup adds three members to its board of directors, including angel investor Curt Roberts, Monarch Ventures founder and managing director JD Gardner, and Chris Russell, managing director of Rock & Hammer Ventures.
The Utah-based startup offers social media software to SMBs and enterprises to help them find new customers and supplementary revenue through social networking platforms like Facebook and Twitter. So far, thousands of businesses across 17 countries have signed on to use GroSocial’s products. To help these companies get more bang for their marketing buck, the startup has created tools like “Customizer” to enable quick design of personalized Facebook pages through the ability to choose from 70 fonts, colors and gradients, strokes, background images, banners, etc., as well as over 20 widgets, which enable teams to add viral promotions, images, text, buttons, forms, videos, and more to their Facebook tabs.
The startup also recently released a “Customer Enterprise” service, built on its flagship Customizer platform, to let larger organizations grow their brands by running custom-designed promotional tabs across their partner networks on Facebook. In turn, the platform enables those partner companies “to realize the benefits of being associated with a larger brand and to leverage that brand by promoting sales, running customized contests or promotions, distributing coupons or adding highlight videos”, the startup said in its funding announcement.
In other words, with products like Customizer, businesses can add a whole mess of social media features to their Facebook and Twitter pages to supe up those channels and make them more powerful marketing vehicles. For example, Customizer allows businesses to add dynamic forms to their Facebook page (like embedding MailChimp or AWeber forms, for example) as well as take advantage of analytics that enable them to track their custom Facebook tabs by tab views, how many “likes” each tab receives, etc.
GroSocial also offers several other social media products designed to help businesses increase social media engagement, like Follower, a proprietary platform that allows teams to build a legitimate Twitter following without having to do any work themselves. While this sounds like a scam, the company claims that by simply following tweeters within the same target market they are able to find those who are significantly more likely to follow and pay attention to your business. In one such example, GroSocial was able to increase a brand’s Twitter following from zero followers to 2,600 in two months.
Other GroSocial products include “Bootcamp” and “Swap”, which give users on-demand access to a series of social media marketing training videos and the ability to gain organic social media publicity by swapping posts with influencers of similar brands on Facebook Fan pages, respectively.
At first brush, these social media marketing tactics don’t exactly seem profound, like they might even have come from these guys, but so far they seem to be having real results for SMBs. For the little guys, who don’t have a lot of time or resources to train a social media team, or spend a lot of time managing and building Twitter feeds and Facebook pages, simple, easy-to-use social media software can go a long way.
For more, check GroSocial out here.