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Clicker, at least in terms of branding and industry recognition, is doing the best job so far of being a television guide for the web. The company — which only launched three months ago at our NewTeeVee Live conference — has been rewarded with an $11 million Series B round led by JAFCO Ventures and including previous investors Benchmark Capital and Redpoint Ventures.
Now the mission is to attract Clicker users by the millions and score distribution deals to get to every screen. Clicker now has 750,000 monthly visitors to its site, and more through distribution on Boxee and other places, said CEO Jim Lanzone. That’s certainly respectable for a three-month-old site but a little low for a pre-revenue portal with $19 million in funding. Lanzone said he did the raise after significant interest from investors.
Clicker provides a very organized and nicely laid-out guide to legal venues for consuming content online. The idea is to save people the time and hassle of knowing where to find their favorite shows. “Our core asset is our database and the technologies to support, grow and maintain it,” said Lanzone. “It’s very agile, and can be deployed almost anywhere.”
However, the company faces a ton of competition, including other startups like SideReel and CastTV, existing large sites like the original TV Guide, as well as Hulu — which now has everyone but CBS in terms of major content, and directs its searchers to shows it doesn’t have. TV Everywhere-type projects from cable companies and other MSOs could potentially be good partners for Clicker but are perhaps as concerned with limiting access to content as they are with providing it. One advantage of Clicker is that it indexes web originals much better than any of those services.
Lanzone said this week that he plans for Clicker’s revenue model to be lead generation rather than video or display advertising. What he means by that is he will invite content producers and subscription services to target potential viewers of their shows (for instance, a cooking show would buy space against other cooking content) or their versions of shows (for instance, Netflix would try to attract viewers to its subscription stream).
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