Let’s do the math: the faster you can address customer service issues, the better. And what’s more immediate than social? That’s the $5 million question, which is how much Conversocial just raised in its latest funding round led by returning investors Octopus Ventures and DFJ Esprit, along with angel investor Matt Arnold. The company has raised nearly $12 million to date.
Conversocial is a cloud solution that helps businesses to effectively, efficiently and securely manage customer service on social media at a large scale, powering enterprise social customer service for hundreds of brands worldwide, including Hertz, Barclaycard, Publishers Clearing House and Volkswagen. Conversocial is a Facebook Preferred Marketing Developer, Instagram Platform Developer, and Twitter Certified Product.
Co-founder and CEO Joshua March talks about the funding process, and what turns the tides in a company’s favor.
What was the funding process like?
This most recent funding was a logical extension of our previous funding last year, with Octopus Ventures and DFJ Esprit once again participating, and the addition of private investor Matt Arnold. We had a great year and were lucky to have investors who are keen to support our growth.
What are the biggest challenges that you faced while raising capital?
As this was led by one of our current investors, we didn’t need to go out to the market, making it a much simpler and faster process than normal!
What factors about your business led your investors to write the check?
The market’s continuing to grow rapidly and our product and services continue to grow with it––often one step ahead. According to recent Forrester research, over 67% of companies believe that social customer service is growing in importance, and is the most pressing short-term priority for contact centers. Further, 92% of companies view customer experience as one of their top priorities in the long term and 60% use it as a competitive differentiator.
Our commercial momentum backs this up. We’ve been more than doubling year-on-year since our inception, and are now working with almost 200 major customers – and expanding rapidly.
What advice can you offer companies in New York that do not have a fresh injection of capital in the bank?
The New York tech scene is booming for a reason: businesses built in the city are influenced from the ground up by the eclectic variety that comes from the millions of people and thousands of brands—all within a few square miles. Whether you’re B2B or B2C, your future customers could be sharing a subway car with you.
Companies who are able to tap into what New York has to offer—from talent and community to media and some of the biggest brands in the world—have a leg up in certainly the US market and, quite possibly, much of the global market. As the cliché goes, “if you can make it in New York, you can make it anywhere.”
This is a still a great time to be raising money, but in the end, traction is all that really matters. So knuckle down, and focus on customers, revenue and growth. If you get that, investors will come to you.
Where do you see the company going now over the near term?
We have some really exciting product launches coming up; but in the mean time the focus remains on expanding our customer base across the key verticals we work with. Our market is developing rapidly, with more and more companies every day realizing that social marketing and SMMS platforms are not built for customer service, and they that need our solution.
We’ve just hired an amazing executive, Kristin Shevis, as VP North America (previously of Hearsay Social) to lead our commercial growth here; and have a great VP EMEA, Julian Johns, who’s spearheading our growth in the UK and Europe.
What’s your favorite leisure time social activity?
I like to read a lot––both business books and fiction (quite a bit of science fiction). I’m also a bit of a CrossFit fanatic, with some yoga and meditation. And, of course, spending time with good friends.