Crowdsourced Advertising Startup Trada Raises $9M in Funding
January 20, 2012 by Kevin Michael Gray
Like it, love it, or hate it a new startup just received a $9 million dollar blank check to aid in the start of a crowdsourced advertising company. The funding has enabled the company to expand at an exponential rate from 30 employees to 100+ employees. What are your thoughts? Do you agree with the crowdsourcing model? Personally I think these 100 employees should follow suit with the crowdsource business model and work collectively for free in hopes that they will be the employee that is selected and in trun will be able to put food on the table for family. What are your thoughts on crowdsourcing? Tweet about it #futureofagencies @futureagency Read the article below:
The power of the crowd seems to be paying off for Boulder, Colo.-based advertising startup Trada.
The crowdsourced online marketing company was set to announce Thursday that it had closed a $9 million Series D financing round from Foundry Group and Google Venture. The two investors had previously invested a combined $7.95 million in the company.
Launched in 2008, Trada connects small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) with online advertising experts and graphic designers in a performance-based marketplace. Businesses let Trada know how much they’re willing to spend each month on search advertising (on Google, Yahoo or Bing) or Facebook marketing, and the company crowdsources the work from its team of search experts (“Optimizers” in Trada-speak) and designers (“Creatives”).
Trada CEO Niel Robertson said the new funding comes after a year of rapid growth for the company. Its head count grew from 30 to nearly 100 employees in 2011 while its total advertiser budget running in the marketplace expanded by 700 percent. While Trada’s largest advertiser had a monthly budget of $35,000 a month at the start of 2011, its biggest advertiser now has a monthly budget of $500,000, he said.
“It’s been a great year for us,” Robertson told Adweek.
The company launched three years ago as a supplier of search advertising services to SMBs that Robertson felt were left behind in the paid search market. Instead of needing tools or a better interface, he said, they needed human expertise.
“These businesses and their budgets require intuition, human ideas," he said, "and [we believed] that a group of people working on these campaigns, first starting in the search side of the world, could end up getting better results than anyone individual[ly]."