AI Helps Marketers Make the Shift from Channel-Centric to Customer Centric Marketing, by Unlocking the Power of Customer Data on Every Channel
Blueshift, the leading Customer Data Activation Platform, announced $15 million in Series-B investment. This funding round is led by Softbank’s new AI-focused early stage fund, Softbank Ventures Asia. Blueshift’s previous investors, including Storm Ventures and Nexus Venture Partners, also participated in the Series-B, which brings Blueshift’s total financing to-date to $30 million. Blueshift also announced that Josh Francia, who served previously as the VP of Marketing at LendingTree, has joined the company as Chief Growth Officer.
Softbank has distinguished itself as a leading investor in AI, and this investment is further validation of how Blueshift’s patented AI technology activates and unlocks the value of customer data for marketers. Leading analyst firm Gartner recently named Blueshift as a Cool Vendor for AI in Marketing, recognizing Blueshift’s capabilities in “autonomous campaign decisioning and delivery across multiple touchpoints for B2C brands.”
“Marketers need a system that was built from the ground up with AI to deal with increasing amounts of customer data, and the proliferation of channels,” said Tae Hea Nahm, Managing Director of Storm Ventures. Tae Hea, who was previously on the board of Marketo, added that, “Savvy digital marketers are starting to realize that AI Marketing requires a fundamentally different architecture. Like the early transition to SaaS and now to AI, incumbents will have a very hard time re-architecting their platform.”
Blueshift’s platform is used by consumer marketers in diverse industries ranging from media & publishing, travel, retail, personal finance and more, transforming from a channel-centric approach to a customer-centric one. In today’s always-on world, marketers are increasingly facing the challenge of using massive amounts of customer data intelligently to make millions of 1:1 marketing decisions in real-time, on multiple channels. Legacy marketing cloud solutions, built for a batch & blast world, and centered around email as the only channel, are unable to assist marketers in this transition. Blueshift’s AI solves this problem by unlocking the power of the data and helping marketers automate intelligent decisions around the right audience (“who”), the right content (“what”), the right time (“when”) and the right channel (“where”).
The platform unifies historical data and real-time streams from multiple data sources into a single customer view, and empowers marketers to scale intelligent and timely engagement on “people-addressable” channels like email, paid media, websites, SMS, direct mail, mobile apps, chat, voice and more. Brands that have adopted Blueshift’s new approach of using AI to activate customer data have seen a 3X revenue lift.
Blueshift will use the funds to accelerate the growth of its Customer Data Activation Platform, and build an ecosystem of apps under its newly released app framework. Josh Francia’s appointment as Chief Growth Officer is a key step in that direction. Francia brings 15 years of large scale consumer marketing experience at leading brands like Priceline and LendingTree. In this role, he will lead marketing, strategic partnerships and customer advocacy, sharing his knowledge of modern customer engagement with consumer marketers everywhere.
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As the VP of Marketing at LendingTree, Francia experienced the power of Blueshift first-hand as a customer. “I personally researched thirty solutions before selecting Blueshift and completely struck gold. Their technology platform coupled with their authentic and deeply knowledgeable support team was and still is a rare combination in the SaaS MarTech landscape,” said Francia. “I witnessed first-hand the step-change power of this cutting-edge platform and wanted to help bring that knowledge to others. The speed and efficiency with which Blueshift’s platform can impact decision-making is incredible, and I’m excited to be a part of this passionate and dedicated team that wants to transform the marketing landscape.”
“At Blueshift, our mission is to put AI in the hands of every marketer so they can transform their customer data into intelligent engagement on every channel,” said Vijay Chittoor, co-founder and CEO of Blueshift. “I am very pleased to welcome both Softbank and Josh to the Blueshift family. With this latest round of financing and outstanding new addition to our leadership team, we are poised to accelerate our growth and deliver the power of AI to even more brands through our Customer Data Activation Platform.”