Year end funding and news
There’s always a humorism about Santa, stockings and year-end funding news but I am tired of them so I’ll let you imagine one. But the news is so good from so many sources that I thought it worthwhile to mention a few here because there are patterns emerging.
First, Salesforce bought MinHash according to the news on the Web. That’s not a funding event proper but it does provide some modicum of cash to the founders who will henceforth be Salesforce employees and they will presumably enjoy the holidays. MinHash is another analytics play that evaluates customer data from multiple sources and makes recommendations to marketers. It sounds simple and like it’s been done already but that’s fine. The deal shows how analytics continues to be a front burner issue.
Also in the area of analytics, Full Circle Insights announced a $4.7 million funding round which, as is typical, will give the company more support to build out the organization, especially sales and marketing, and to continue raising money. Full Circle offers marketing performance analytics that can help organizations understand their best programs and pitches as well as their worst. Users are then able to do more of one and less of the other.
The old saying that a marketer knows that half the marketing budget is wasted but is unsure of which half is no longer operative. Founder and CEO Bonnie Crater tells me that the 80/20 rule should obtain now and programs that don’t work should be the B in an A, B test. Technically that means that none of the budget is wasted since a negative result still provides the experimenter with important information.
Third, take a look at Pramata, which my spell checker just changed to “primate.” Hmmmm. Pramata digs through an organization’s customer data, specifically billing system data and contracts to identify the milestones of relationships such as effective discounts, key dates and triggers, what customers agreed to purchase and a lot more. With Pramata vendors develop intelligence about customers so that they can know next moves in relationships. We apply a lot of thought and products to sales and marketing for net new customers and it’s very nice to see a vendor focusing on the customer base for a change.
So, here we have three types of intelligence spanning the customer lifecycle from earliest contact to optimizing and extending relationships. With these markers its easy to see that analytics and big data are not simply ideas that big vendors have exclusivity to. More importantly, it’s easy to see how analytics is percolating through business to provide insights to various groups in the enterprise. But also note how important it is that these tools be able to present their results to humans, a.k.a. primates who can do something with it. The more intelligent our systems become, the more they need us.