Facebook marketing company Buddy Media has tacked on an additional $5 million to last week’s already-impressive $23 million Series C round. The new money is an all-cash investment from WPP Digital, the acquisition- and investment-making arm of WPP, a global marketing and communications service.
The Buddy Media partnership with WPP Digital is purely strategic. While the first raises even more needed capital, the latter gains fluid access to a Facebook managing system for brands, which could greatly benefit WPP clients.
Not only will the Buddy Media platform be directly integrated into WPP’s technology suite, but WPP agencies will also receive training on the platform in the first year of the partnership. If that wasn’t good enough, Buddy Media and WPP will also be co-developing products and applications for the platform specifically intended for WPP clients.
“As Facebook has surpassed the ‘half-billion-users’ milestone, and is effectively the third largest country in the world, it is no longer a matter of ‘if’ brands should have a presence on Facebook, but ‘how’ they can be successful,” said Mark Read, CEO of WPP Digital. “In the same way that brands have software for managing websites and search campaigns globally, it is also now appropriate that we have software that will help manage the fastest growing communication medium of all time, Facebook.”
He might sound a little bombastic, almost apocalyptic, but he’s mostly right. With 500 million registered members around the world, Facebook is an essential platform for companies and brands in the 21st century. Tons of startups--including Context Optional and Shoutlet--realize that there’s a lot of money to be made in building social media marketing tools, even if one focuses only on the single most popular social network.
Added to last week’s round, which was led by Institutional Venture Partners with participation from existing investors Softbank Capital, Greycroft Partners, and Bay Partners, today’s announced funding bring Buddy Media’s total raised to over $38 million.