As briefly mentioned earlier today, voice based marketing automation provider Ifbyphone has secured a $9 million series D funding round. It was led by River Cities Capital, and it brings Ifbyphone’s total funding to date to $30 million.
This is one telling sign among many of growth in the broader call monetization space. Our data indicate that $68 billion is spent annually across media on localized ads to generate calls to businesses and 61 percent of SMBs consider phone calls the most valuable form of incoming lead.
According to Ifbyphone’s press release:
It’s why even though today’s fastest-growing new economy companies, such as SaaS (software as a service) and other high-performing businesses, may market their products online, they generate revenue over the phone using inside sales and telemarketing teams. These companies use voice-based marketing automation to measure marketing effectiveness and optimize ROI by not only tracking each inbound call back to the specific online, mobile or offline source that originated it, but also by routing calls automatically to the right sales agent no matter where they are or what phone device they use.
Ifbyphone’s product suite is emblematic of a holistic approach meeting today’s enterprise demand, a la Salesforce’s model. This includes four main areas (mapping to several individual products): Call tracking, routing, management (i.e. virtual call centers), and customer notification.
“Tracking the call is not enough,” Ifbyphone CEO Irv Shapiro told me. “You need tools to route that call to the optimal party to close a sale; and a third set of tools manage the call once it’s routed. The last leg is outbound customer notification. If you’re running a business engaging customers by phone, we think you need all four.”
Ifbyphone is on a steady growth clip, and has been able to capture lots of business around the above call monetizaiton growth trends. Now, with the new funding it will accelerate this growth by taking a more aggressive sales push.
“Historically we’ve been selling to early adopters that find us,” said Shapiro. “That worked well, reaching 4,000 organizations and hundreds of thousands of customer end points. With funding we’ll deploy a sales force to push the message.”