A large volume of customer service transactions is happening through social media these days, with roughly 10% of customer service requests coming through various platforms like Facebook or Twitter, according to the hosted customer service social media toolkit provider, Conversocial.
Indeed, managing these hundreds of thousands of tweets and posts coming through social media has earned Conversocial $5 million in a new A-2 financing to add to its existing $4.4 million in Series A funding.
“If you tweet at Hertz with a problem, our software calls that in, identifies customer service issues and provides a workflow system to route the right tweet to the right agent and then provides analysis and management tools for how their customer service representatives are doing,” says Conversocial chief executive, Joshua March.
The company’s new $5 million tranche to its Series A was led by Octopus Ventures, a London-based venture capital firm. Other previous investors including DFJ Esprit and an angel investor, Matt Arnold, came on board as part of the new financing as well.
The London-based company did not comment on its current valuation, but said it has raised just under $12 million since it was spun out of iPlatform in July 2010.
Conversocial is sold as a service, on a license basis, with pricing based on how many customer service agents they have, according to March. There are currently 200 companies on the platform, with customers ranging from startups like Jackthreads to enterprises with large consumer-facing clientele like Hertz, Bank of Montreal, and Google.
Revenue is evenly split between global clients and customers inside the United States, March said.
March had built his previous business, iPlatform on the backs of burgeoning social media companies like Facebook. That company consulted businesses on how best to develop communities on Facebook and engage with other social media services like Twitter.
“Social media was becoming one of the primary ways that customers and companies were interacting,” says March. Through that iPlatform experience, the team at Conversocial was able to spend time in contact centers four or five years ago and aided the movement of contact centers into social media. Customer service had to be done through customer relationship management, says March. But managing a customer service and contact center platform was different from managing other types of social media communications.
The biggest driver is the omnipresence of social media as a strategy for business development across customer relationship management, marketing, branding, and even product development.
“You’re seeing a need to deeply integrate social networking into business operations,” says March. “I think that’s the next major wave of social technologies.””