SessionM Raises $35M To Help Merge Marketing Automation With Mobile And Digital Media

SessionMMarketing platform SessionM raised $35 million in a strategic growth round led by new investor General Atlantic, with support from fellow newcomer Salesforce Ventures.

The Series D raise, announced Thursday, brings SessionM’s total financing to $73.5 million.

SessionM is a cloud-based system that blends data points from traditional channels like loyalty platforms and email with digital applications.

The fresh injection will go toward product, sales and marketing expansion along with market expansion in Europe and Japan, according to Lars Albright, the company’s co-founder and CEO, who previously hung his hat at Apple’s mobile ad business, iAd.

SessionM will also use the funds to pursue more enterprise Fortune 500 clients. Currently it works with companies like NASCAR, which used SessionM’s platform to power its mobile loyalty program, or Kimberly-Clark, which used SessionM to build a mobile rewards program that included digital coupon redemptions. 

“We’ve seen this real acceleration of large enterprises trying to understand how to communicate with users in near real time,” Albright said. “Our core from day one was, ‘How can you get consumers to engage with whatever experience a company might develop, whether it’s an application, a website or in-store?’”

Even though Salesforce Ventures invested in the five-year-old SessionM, it occasionally competes around cross-channel customer experience against the larger enterprise marketing platforms like Salesforce, Oracle and IBM.

It also competes against smaller point solutions on functions like activating loyalty data in media or merging CRM with behavioral data in a data management platform.

While marketers want to merge CRM and paid media, the process has numerous challenges.

“A lot of [what happens in] CRM is still this static data, waiting for results from your email push and then manually examining it,” Albright said. “In the world today, with mobile being such a key driver for it, you can’t have that long a cycle between your personalization and messaging in the experiences you deliver.”

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