Here's What's Hot – 13 Super Startups to Watch
The Web world moves at a furious pace, and digital workers can miss the next big thing in the blink of an eye. Some emerging services such as Pinterest are fortunate enough to take center stage while other solutions of seemingly equal value to Web pros wallow in relative obscurity.
When WM covered this week’s launch of Chirpify, a new retail sales platform for Twitter users, it made us realize that we were due for a look at some of the hottest new products, services and startup companies on the Web. Some you may have already heard of (some we’ve even mentioned before), and some you may actually be using, in which case we would like your honest input in the comments section below. Please free to also use that section to add your own selections to the following list.
A newly launched product from Israeli company BIScience, AdClarity aims to give online advertisers the most detailed analysis yet about their competitors’ advertising campaigns. The product has been designed to show users where on the Web a competing advertiser’s campaign has run, which ad networks, agencies and affiliate networks were used, and exactly what was included in the campaign’s ad creative.
Peanut Labs has launched a new iteration of its crowd-sampling tool that allows businesses and brands to receive real-time insights about products or procedures from the Web community. The online surveys go out to more than 50 million Internet users on 200 social networks around the world, who participate in order to earn Facebook credits or other forms of virtual currency. Users can target specific segments of consumers based on their attributes and the types of questions a company wants answered. The new service costs a dollar or less per user and results are returned within seconds.
This new payment network was created to eliminate credit card fees and make it quicker and easier for online businesses to receive payments. The platform offers free micro-transactions for purchases less than $10, and a flat rate of 25 cents for all other transactions. Dwolla offers many plug-ins to enable its services to work with e-commerce platforms such as Shopify, Magento and creLoaded.
Similar to HootSuite, Gremln is a social media toolset for small businesses. The service enables users to schedule tweets on popular social media sites including Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook. It comes with four packages that start out free and range up to $500 a month. The Basic (free) package enables users to sign up for five social network accounts, provides an engagement dashboard, allows for five scheduled messages per hour and recurring scheduled massages, translation, goal tracking, two RSS feeds, social analytics and integrates with Bit.ly.
This startup’s embedded video platform gives users a way to deliver video to targeted audiences in the channels they consider most important, such as social games, mobile devices and YouTube. The Jun Group already generates millions of opt-in video views each month and reaches over 101 million active users, as well as providing built-in analytics tracking and pinpoint targeting based on factors such as age, gender, location, mobile device and content category.
Former Google marketing manager Elizabeth has just launched an email advertising network she describes as providing an experience similar to AdWords. LaunchBit users create their ads, identify the demographics of the audience they want to reach via email, then choose the cost-per-click (CPC) price they will be willing to pay. The ads win a certain number of impressions in multiple newsletters, ensuring that users reach their target demographic while getting their campaigns in multiple newsletters.
Another email advertising platform that caters to publishers, advertisers and agencies, LiveIntent comes fully compatible with all ESPs and delivers its LiveTag display ads in real-time via email newsletters. LiveTags can be delivered on any type of device the moment a recipient opens his or her email message. Advertisers can target audiences based on a variety of factors, and all ads are optimized for location and device. Publishers can use the platform to maximize the value of their email inventory while keeping control over ad ops. So far, the company has partnered with major brands such as MSNBC, Verizon, The Weather Channel, Maxim and more.
With more than 50,000 registered professionals and services providers, MiNeeds is quickly becoming an online marketing tool of choice for smart, social businesses. By offering consumers a highly efficient way to shop for services, the startup has become a consistent lead and revenue generator for local vendors and small businesses. Users post their needs online and then receive competitive proposals from local professionals without having to initiate contact, negotiate costs or waste time on the phone.
Startup social relationship manager Nimble has been around for a few years and is earning the reputation as a revolutionary online business solution. Named to ZDNet’s 2012 CRM Watch List, the startup enables small businesses to engage customers in a two-way dialogue by leveraging the power of traditional CRM and social media with its Web-based social CRM platform.
This startup provides pricing intelligence solutions for retailers and manufacturers, meaning it helps you answer questions about how much your competitors charge for similar products; how many they have in stock; what new products they’ve started selling; which of your products are more expensive; if you’re missing sales, and which products you don’t price high enough. Profitero will help users sell their products at the most accurate price-point possible in line with the rest of the market, and it does so by providing up-to-date competitor pricing information and answering the aforementioned questions in minutes.
Retailigence is a startup company that powers location-based shopping solutions, mostly mobile apps and websites, by providing specific information about a retailer’s products by location. The platform helps brick-and-mortar retailers reach local shoppers, and promises to do so at the height of their intent to purchase. Retailers use Retailigence by providing their product-specific (such as in-store availability) and location information, and then Retailigence shares that information with its developer and publisher partners to include on their sites, apps, etc.
Launched in 2010, SinglePlatform helps local businesses get discovered online. The platform helps small businesses extend their storefront to millions of customers through publisher networks of hotels, city guides, review sites and mobile apps. It also helps local businesses promote their menus, specials, photos and services, as well as manage social media pages, websites, mobile sites and more. Most recently, SinglePlatform partnered up with Foursquare in order to provide menus for restaurants on the location-based social network.