Percolate, a startup that helps marketers create content and share it on social networks, is announcing that it has raised a $24 million Series B led by Sequoia Capital.
Co-founder James Gross told me that the big round from Sequoia is an endorsement of Percolate’s claim that it’s not just another social media management system. That’s because it’s not just allowing businesses to listen and respond on social media, but to find, create, and distribute engaging content, too. The ultimate goal is to turn Percolate into “the system of record” for brands, Gross said.
Product features include the ability to create a calendar with potential topics for sharing on a given day, browse content that’s related to the company or theme (whether it’s owned by the brand, has been published elsewhere, or is user-generated), then tweak and share on social networks, as well as collaborate on content as a team and see analytics around what’s performing well. For example, staffing agency Aquent said Percolate cut the time to post content to its social channels (like the Aquent Facebook Page) in half.
Gross also suggested that it’s a win for the New York startup ecosystem. That’s where Percolate was founded, it’s where the bulk of its 100-plus employees work, and Gross said the company remains “really committed to New York.”
Apparently, Percolate still had money in the bank from its $9 million Series A, but the additional funding will allow it to expand internationally and to “ramp up our marketing efforts,” aimed at helping brands understand “this new phase of marketing technology.”
And the company will continue to develop its product. Gross pointed to the company’s workflow tools (like its smartphone apps and its straightforward process for requesting the rights to user generated content) as well as its partnerships with content providers like Getty Images as areas that he’d like to expand.
“We need to build a robust enough platform to allow for … any creative input to plug into us,” Gross said.
Previous investors GGV Capital, First Round Capital, Lerer Ventures, and WPP also participated in the new funding. (Ad agency WPP recently announced a strategic investment in the company.) Sequoia’s Mike Dixon is joining the Percolate board of directors.
“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,” Dixon said in the funding press release.
Although what I’ve seen of the products aren’t suggest that they aren’t quite focused on the same areas, it’s worth noting that another content marketing startup, NewsCred, announced a $25 million Series C in January.