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The “influencer marketing” space is hotting up.
Ad blocking, which has been around for decades but is now seeing a massive increase in adoption, is one of the driving forces behind the recent interest in using influencers to spread the word about your product or service.
If important, well-connected people are promoting your wares through blog posts, Instagram, Snapchat, and good old-fashioned word of mouth, no ad blocker can get in the way.
Today, Experticity and ReadyPulse have announced their merger, with a mission to create an influencer company under the Experticity brand that combines marketing technology with more than a million real-life influencers.
“Fifty percent of the population is under 34 — they spend hours a day on mobile and social networks, and they turn off or block ads,” Dennis O’Malley, CEO at ReadyPulse, told me. “Brands want to get in the feed, not out of the feed. Most display ads aren’t working for brands, and consumers are looking for authentic, real-time, relevant content in the context of their lives.”
Experticity has a community of over one million active influencers, which is comprised of industry professionals, opinion leaders, and influential retail sales associates. These individuals are actively sought out for trusted recommendations on what to buy. The merger makes this community available to the ReadyPulse platform, a SaaS solution that provides influencer recruiting and management. It helps to find valuable social influencers, as well as amplifying campaigns and user-generated content.
Many influencer systems pay to have their product or service spread across social channels, a tactic that can cause as many problems as it solves thanks to a lack of transparency — something various advertising authorities have struggled with regulating.
“A key difference with ReadyPulse and Experticity is that neither community pays its influencers,” O’Malley said. “Influencers participate thanks to recognition, access to early information and products, and unique brand experiences.”
The newly formed company brings that community of influencers together with a combined client list of over 750 top consumer brands, including Stance, The North Face, Purina, and Nickelodeon.
Experticity, based in Salt Lake City, has received $18.7 million in funding across three rounds since it was founded in 2004. ReadyPulse, located in San Carlos, California, has received $7 million across two rounds since it was established in 2011. Financial details of the merger were not disclosed.
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