Influencer Marketing Pioneer Pursway (formerly Datanetis) Reveals Major Customer Success, Expands European and North American Footprint with Investment from Battery Ventures

Waltham, MA, London, UK, Herzliya, Israel — February 9, 2010 — Influencer Marketing company Pursway (formerly Datanetis) is helping a growing number of consumer companies realize an order of magnitude improvement in the effectiveness of their customer relationship strategies, boosting customer acquisition, retention, and cross-selling outcomes.

On the heels of major customer wins, Pursway is expanding its operations in Europe and North America with a $6 million Series A investment from Battery Ventures.

Based on a combination of patent-pending algorithms and influencer marketing expertise and success metrics developed in over one hundred customer implementations, Pursway offers the first and only solution that enables companies to leverage social influence in a scalable and measurable fashion.

“It is well-documented that most buying decisions are made as a result of recommendations from friends, family, and colleagues,” notes Elery Pfeffer, Pursway’s Co-founder and CEO. “Our solution enables companies to close the gap between how they market their products and services and the way consumers really make their buying decision. Working with some of the leading global retail, financial, and telecommunication companies worldwide, the results show 5-10 times improvement in marketing ROI in as short as 3 months.”

The Pursway solution enables companies to identify the influencers and followers for each product or offer within their customer database. They can then create campaigns that utilize this information in a measurable fashion that can be tied to success metrics.

Companies working with the Pursway solution include Vodafone Group, Orange, and other leading mobile network operators, as well as companies in the retail, financial, and travel and hospitality sectors.

Bob Rapp, Head of User Communities at Vodafone Group says, “The work we have done with Pursway on a recent product launch across Europe demonstrates the capabilities and value presented by the Pursway solution and its team above and beyond any other methods we have previously experimented with.”

“Helping the launch of social network analysis initiatives in several European mobile network operators, Pursway has been able to expand the operators’ knowledge of the subscriber base and identify a large number of influencers not considered in previous analyses,” according to Saverio Romeo, Industry Analyst at Frost & Sullivan. “The effect of the influencers on the campaigns has also been significant. On average, each influencer has caused three to seven followers to respond to the campaign that, in turn, has strongly increased product uptake.”

Social Influence Beyond Social Media

Unlike solutions that search for opinion leaders in social media conversations (e.g. Twitter, Facebook), Pursway employs a distinctly different method that enables companies to identify the millions of “everyday influencers” using only data that already exist in their customer database, and without infringing on the privacy of online conversations.

“Our findings from over one hundred customer projects show that people who talk the most, post the most, or have the most connections are not necessarily the real influencers when it comes to actual buying behavior,” adds Pfeffer.

“We have developed our own social network analysis solution and were able to use it for specific purposes in our marketing efforts,” notes Alain Glickman, Customer Insights Director, Orange Group. “We have also looked at other solutions, but Pursway has taken the technology and the entire Influencer Marketing approach to a new level that has the potential for far-reaching impact on our entire customer relationship strategy and beyond what we are able to do today.”

Cross-Industry Track Record

Pursway works closely with chief marketing officers and heads of customer relationship management (CRM) to establish best practices that amplify the viral effect through campaigns and customer experiences that motivate influencers to spread the word and become evangelists for a company’s products and services.

“For each product or service tThere is typically 7-15% of the population who are the real influencers, but they can impact as much as 70% of purchase decisions. By now we have analyzed a cumulative consumer base of well over a hundred million people, and have delivered the same order of magnitude increase in marketing effectiveness working with retailers, financial service providers, travel and entertainment destinations, and mobile telephone operators all over the world,” explains Ran Shaul, Pursway’s Co-Founder and EVP Customer Solutions.

“We view Influencer Marketing as an important vehicle to help us reach customers in ways that go beyond the traditional marketing channels. We selected the Pursway solution to help us leverage the power of social influence in order to strengthen customer advocacy, enhance loyalty, and increase the value and frequency of customer interactions at our properties,” says George Rogers, Executive Director of Strategic Marketing at Connecticut’s Foxwoods Resort Casino.

Pursway’s novel approach and proprietary technology has shown to produce a multifold increase in ROI as compared to traditional data mining and customer relationship management (CRM) strategies and techniques. “We have been using extensive segmentation of our customer database for quite some time and have a very successful loyalty program that we have been cultivating for years,” says Ofra Lewin, VP marketing for Crazy Line, a 70-store leading fashion retailer in Israel. “Working with Pursway, we have been able to target and engage our most influential customers above and beyond what we achieved prior to that, generating results that have contributed to a measurable increase in our bottom-line profit.”

Expanding in Europe and Entering U.S. Market

Based in Israel, Pursway is led by a team with an innovative track record in large scale data mining, advanced algorithmic development, social network analytics, and consumer marketing disciplines. The funding from Battery Ventures, a global venture capital firm that has raised more than $3B since its inception, will support the company’s growth in the U.S. and Europe, with new offices in the Boston area and in London.

“Pursways successful track record in large consumer-facing organizations is a testament to the market-wide appeal of their solution,” remarks Scott Tobin, General Partner at Battery Ventures. “With a combination of breakthrough technology and marketing best practices, Pursway is ideally positioned to lead the field in establishing influencer marketing as the next marketing revolution.”

To Learn More About Pursway and Influencer Marketing:

 

About Pursway

Pursway (previously known as Datanetis) empowers consumer-facing organizations to close the gap between how they market and how people buy. The Pursway patent-pending technology enables companies to identify, measure, and impact how opinion leaders shape their followers’ purchasing decisions. Using the Pursway solutions, leading global organizations in telecommunications, retail, and financial services are realizing 5-10x improvement in the ROI of customer acquisition, cross-sell, and churn prevention efforts.

Pursway is led by a team with an innovative track record in large scale data mining, advanced algorithmic development, social network analytics, and consumer marketing disciplines. For more information, visit www.pursway.com.

About Battery Ventures

Since 1983, Battery has been investing in technology and innovation worldwide. The firm partners with entrepreneurs and management teams across technology sectors, geographies, and stages of a company’s life — from start-up and expansion financing to growth equity and buyouts.

Battery has supported many breakthrough companies around the world, including: Airespace (acquired by Cisco), Akamai Technologies (NASDAQ: AKAM), BladeLogic (acquired by BMC Software), Netezza (NYSE Arca: NZ), Omniture (NASDAQ: OMTR), and ProfitLogic (acquired by Oracle). Battery currently manages more than $3B in committed capital and invests from offices in Boston, Silicon Valley and Israel. For more information, visit: www.battery.com.

PR Contacts:

Peter Himler
U.S. Media Contact for Pursway
+1-516-729-6461
phimler@flatironcomm.com

Darshna Kamani
Eskenzi PR Ltd
+44 207 183 2834
Darshna@eskenzipr.com

Karen Bommart
Battery Ventures
+1-781-478-6600
kbommart@battery.com