Wildfire Interactive has had solid success with its flagship product, a software platform to make it easy for companies to promote their brands via social media, says CEO Victoria Ransom. Since the company’s public launch two years ago, Wildfire has attracted big name clients, grown its staff considerably, and even started generating self-sustaining profits.
But the Palo Alto, Calif.-based startup isn’t resting on its laurels. This week, Wildfire is launching a new product suite aimed at helping companies better manage their social media marketing efforts. The new product suite is essentially composed of four features, Ransom told me in a pre-launch interview Monday:
- A social promotion feature that helps companies more easily incorporate promotions such as contests and coupons into their social media profiles
- A page manager for creating and managing custom-looking Facebook fan pages
- A messenger product that aggregates and manages messages from Facebook and Twitter in one place
- A dashboard that helps companies evaluate the performance of their social media marketing efforts and balance that against their competitors
Wildfire decided to incorporate the new features based on the customer feedback it has received since its official launch two years ago, Ransom told me. Since then, the company has attracted an impressive user base that includes big clients, such as Virgin Atlantic and Electronic Arts (s erts), as well as a number of small and medium businesses to which Wildfire initially aimed its software platform.
Wildfire’s popularity has translated directly into bottom-line results. The company achieved profitability early on, and remains solidly cash-flow positive to this day, Ransom told me. Wildfire has grown its staff from seven employees in early 2010 to 120 today, with offices in New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles and London in addition to its Silicon Valley headquarters. The company has taken on $4 million in venture capital, most of which remains in the bank, Ransom said.
According to Ransom, Wildfire stands out from other players in the social media marketing platform space — such as Context Optional, Buddy Media and Vitrue — because it has been focused from the start on providing a plug-and-play product. “A lot of other companies started as custom developers for larger companies” who have since decided to build more generally accessible software platforms, she said. “From the start, we had smaller businesses in mind. We wanted to make a truly turnkey solution.”
Asked if Wildfire has attracted takeover interest from larger players in the space– after all, Context Optional recently sold for a reported $50 million– Ransom said her company isn’t actively looking to sell any time soon. “Is there interest in the market? Yeah, definitely,” she said. “But we’re totally heads down and focused on the business right now. We just feel like we’ve got so much left to achieve.” With profits, new products, and a still-growing team behind her, making that choice is certainly her prerogative.
Here are some screenshots of the new product suite Wildfire is launching this week:
Photo of Wildfire Interactive co-founders Victoria Ransom and Alain Chuard courtesy of the company.