VC-Backed LocalResponse Launches Public Beta
Earlier this week, Nihal Mehta (pictured) announced he launched LocalResponse, a New York-based developer of a Web-based tool that allows local businesses to respond to check-in posts on social media sites with tailored marketing campaigns. Mehta co-founded the company, previously known as Buzzd, as a social city guide for location-based services. The company had raised about $3.5 million from Greycroft Partners, Monitor Ventures, BlackBerry Partners Fund and Qualcomm Ventures. As part of its pivot, Mehta tells peHUB that LocalReponse raised $1.5 million in December from investors, such as Verizon Ventures, Charles River Ventures, Metamorphic Ventures and others, including hedge fund manager Jim Pallotta. Mehta is also general partner of ENIAC Ventures, a seed stage investor in the mobile sector.The world’s first turnkey social customer relationship management tool, LocalResponse, will change the face of consumer engagement and retention management for businesses with a quick, easy, and convenient tool.LocalResponse launches its long-awaited public beta. This innovative new tool disrupts the definition of social media by allowing business owners to respond to their customers to drive transactions. Localresponse.com allows businesses to track their consumers in real time by organizing, indexing and prioritizing various location-based services. Company founder and CEO, Nihal Mehta, says this tool will be invaluable in today’s social media frenzy.“A new phenomena has hit the social web: hundreds of millions of consumers globally monthly broadcast their location across Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare & more. We’re now leveraging the aggregated public “check-in” to help businesses more accurately target their customers. We believe that check-in is the golden key in digital advertising for behavioral and location-based targeting.”After thorough testing, LocalResponse has become the authority on how to harness consumer psychology and has created a solution to the holes and headaches found in other social media tools. Localresponse.com zeros in on what local merchants want and need by cutting out the middleman and allowing them to remain in control with direct consumer contact. Businesses will now have access to a simple and user-friendly platform to sift through millions of online messages and respond accordingly. It provides a forum for them to retain customers, create new ones and manage relationships.LocalResponse aggregates real-time social media check-ins from Facebook, Twitter, foursquare, Gowalla, Instagram and dozens of other services to provide a simple interface for local businesses to directly respond to their most influential and valuable customers. For the past six months, LocalResponse has been running a private beta, with over 2,000 campaigns averaging a shocking 60 percent click-through rate and 15-20 percent redemption rates.Over 150 million tweets are sent out per day and over 50 million check-ins per month on Foursquare, and even more across Facebook. LocalResponse collects and prioritizes this information both explicitly (e.g. Foursquare) and implicitly (by analyzing natural language on Facebook, Twitter, etc.; e.g. “I’m headed to Nobu”), the latter being protected by pending patents and contributing to majority of “check-in” inventory. LocalResponse takes this otherwise problematic data, organizes it and arms merchants with a solution that has a clear bias towards action.“Businesses are overwhelmed by the hundreds of sites and apps that their customers are using. Learning each service is its own puzzle, and worse, all the pieces are mixed together. We intend to corral these problems, and arm the merchant with a single, elegant solution,” says Michael Muse, LocalResponse’s Vice President of Product.In addition to local businesses, LocalResponse has been working with several major brands and will be announcing its innovative advertising platform for brands and agencies in upcoming weeks.ABOUT LocalResponse: LocalResponse is a web application created for businesses to manage and respond to customer visits via social media. The platform aggregates real-time “check-ins” from leading social media services and provides a simple interface for local merchants and brands to directly respond to those individuals within time/space. LocalResponse is backed by Verizon Ventures, Metamorphic Ventures, Extreme Venture Partners, Charles River Ventures, BOLDstart Ventures, Jim Pallotta, Greycroft Partners, and others.