Localytics Pushes Mobile Marketing with $35M Series D
Localytics may be hitting its stride. In the ever-difficult tightrope walk of increasing revenues while also growing a company, the Boston-based mobile marketing company is doing both.
It passed the $10 million mark for revenue run rate in 2014, 2.5 times greater than the prior year, according to CEO Raj Aggarwal. And it has a new round of Series D funding to help, announcing the $35 million round this morning led by new investor Sapphire Ventures with existing investors Foundation Capital and Polaris Partners. The company has raised $60 million since it was founded six years ago.
“We’re not releasing valuation, but we’re happy with it,” Aggarwal said about the funding in a telephone interview. Localytics is using the money to improve its predictive intelligence capabilities for its app-marketing on smartphones and on the Web, he said.
That means the company wants to more effectively use the data it collects about its customers’ users to keep those users on the app, and possibly encourage them to spend money, too. Localytics uses data about what a person does while in the app—anonymous data, like what products he or she uses or what articles he or she reads—as well as any personal information that a user might provide, Aggarwal said. That might be something like a favorite sports team.
Localytics is now trying to also use that information to try to predict what a user might do next—or what Localytics’ clients might be able to sell, Aggarwal said. Localytics wants to use the data to determine whether a person —maybe the fan of a football team who reads numerous articles about that team—might be willing to pay for a premium account. If so, Localytics and its customer can reach out to that user through push marketing, in-app, or e-mail marketing, Aggarwal said.
The company can also use its collected data to study when that kind of marketing has caused a negative result, he said.
“It’s using that data to figure out what a user is likely to do next so you can send the right person, the right message at the right time,” Aggarwal said. “You’re otherwise kind of left in a situation where you’re kind of giving everybody form-type messaging that will really only work for some people and will hurt you with a lot of users.”
That type of “proactive” messaging can possibly reduce the number of users who try an app once, and never use it again, he said. Localytics charges its customers based on the number of monthly active users they have, changing as that number rises or falls.
Officially launched in 2009, the company participated in the Boston Techstars program and has since landed customers ranging from A+E Networks to ESPN to eBay. Since it announced a $16 million Series C round in 2014, the company has grown from 75 employees to 200 in Boston, San Francisco, and London as it adds new clients such as HBO Now, Nordstrom, The Weather Channel, and MyFitnessPal.
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