Buddy Media, the Facebook page-management service for brands and businesses, said today it has raised $23 million in mezzanine financing as it attempts to keep up with booming growth and capture the attention of deep-pocketed institutional investors.
Buddy Media uses its Facebook management system, named The Buddy Media Platform, to help seven out of 10 of the world’s largest advertisers connect with their customers through a suite of tools that raises brand awareness via social networking.
The web-based marketing software is tweaked for each specific brand’s need in order to leverage Facebook’s 500 million current users, allowing companies to target consumers when they’re looking for particular products or services.
It does this by creating interactive features for brands such as virtual gifts, special offers like coupons, polls about brand awareness and even links to relevant YouTube videos.
The New York-based company said it will use the new money to triple its headcount to 300 in the next 18 months, as well as seed other marketing and growth initiatives.
That is much needed money for a firm that has been growing 15 percent month over month in 2010, netting new clients like Johnson & Johnson, Crate & Barrel, Ford Motor Company, Donna Karan, Armani Exchange and GNC just in the third quarter alone.
The Buddy Media Platform was already the Facebook management system for brands such as Delta, L’Oreal, Procter & Gamble, Starwood, Southwest Airlines, Unilever, Samsung, the National Hockey League and Anheuser-Busch.
“In the same way major brands and agencies have invested in web-based software for sales or display advertising, they are now investing in marketing software for the largest two-way communications platform of all time: Facebook,” said Steve Harrick, general partner at IVP.
Founded in 2007, this latest funding will bring Buddy’s total financing to $33 million.
As part of today’s deal, Harrick will join the Buddy Media board of directors.