As brands clamor for causes to support, Good-Loop raises $6 million for its vue-donation advertising platform – TechCrunch
Online advertising is generally terrible, and our expectation that “information is free” has tragically ended up fueling misinformation-filled social networks like Facebook. Many companies have tried unsuccessfully to turn advertising into a way to fuel good causes. What is there to do?
When I met Amy Williams in 2016, it seemed like her idea for an “advertising for good” platform would be, like others, doomed. But that just goes to show that it’s usually impossible to predict the success of startup entrepreneurs. For the company she founded, good-loop, has now closed a $6.1m (£4.5m) Series A round for its platform that tricks people into viewing adverts in order to ‘unlock’ a donation to charity. And there’s more to it than meets the eye.
The financing round was led by a New York-based investment fund, Questus Capital Managementwith additional support from Scottish Enterprise, impact investor SIS Ventures and the European Ad Tech Fund First party capital and investments raised on the crowdfunding platform Seedrs. This means that Good-Loop has now raised a total of $8.2 million to date. The funding will be used to accelerate the company’s product roadmap and open offices in New York and Chicago to serve its US market.
Besides also being a Company B Good-Loop claims its “Show ads to donate” model delivers more meaningful brand engagement, free philanthropy from users, and “4.5x higher than industry standard” ad recall. , says the company. It also says demand for its programmatic solutions has grown 180% over the past 12 months.
Charities on the Good-Loop platform get 50% of ad revenue. Clients include Unilever, PepsiCo, Nestlé, Levi’s, adidas, NBC Universal and Nike. Using this model, Good-Loop claims to have now raised over $5 million for charities around the world, including Save The Children, WaterAid, Feeding America and WWF.
Good-Loop CEO Amy Williams, who founded the company alongside CTO Daniel Winterstein, said, “At the heart of our industry is an inherent exchange of value between advertiser and consumer, and I mission to harness this value as a significant strength. for real. With our respectful and positive advertising platform, brands can treat people as partners rather than targets, united by a desire to have a meaningful social impact. Support from industry experts such as QCM and FirstPartyCapital, social impact investors, and indeed the general public, will help drive our growth while keeping us true to our values every step of the way.
Austin Davis, CEO of QCM, said, “Good-Loop takes advertising and conscious business to a whole new level and will become the industry’s Fairtrade label. The business model solves many long-standing issues in the industry and is the paradigm shift needed to regain consumer confidence in transparent and ethical advertising… It’s a win-win for all parties.
Good-Loop has also launched solutions allowing advertisers to measure and offset the carbon cost of their digital advertising campaigns.
In an interview, I asked Williams what she thought helped propel the company to a Series A: “I think it’s a combination of good timing and good traction. In terms of timing, the brand’s focus has increased over the past 10 years. Unilever led the way when they started building social purpose brands like Dove soap, when a big study showed their specialty brands had grown faster than the rest of their portfolio. It was a bit of a starting point for other companies to start thinking about it. Meanwhile, consumers are now buying brands that reflect their values. Now, consumers increasingly want to express their social values, such as their position on issues such as the climate crisis, diversity and inclusion. We have exploited this trend.
So what has changed?
“Over the past 18 months since the pandemic, there has been a huge catalyst for this, both in terms of stepping up brands and helping to reassure and support communities,” he told me. she says.
“You have Deliveroo giving food to NHS workers and you have Nike Running exercise classes in your living room. All companies have mobilized and consumers have felt it. I think we’ve all had this very deep sense of how quickly the rug can be pulled under you. All of this means that we are at the right time, in the right place. We’re building technology that makes it easy for brands to do good and for brands to connect with consumers about these issues. A third of our turnover now comes from the United States, particularly in terms of CSR and corporate responsibility. So yes, at the right time, in the right place,” she said.
I asked him if, with the pandemic seeming to pass, the shift to social good might be a “flash in the pan”?
“The genie cannot be put back in the bottle,” she said.
“Major companies have started to commit to net zero. Many of them are looking to be carbon neutral by 2025. ESG investments have tripled in size in the past 12 months. So if you want to get shareholders’ attention, you have to take these things seriously. And on the consumer side, we’re seeing that consumers are both more loyal and spending more money with brands that align with their values, such as the environment. They are eight times more likely to buy from a brand that takes climate change seriously, for example. »
Williams said consumers expect brands to change their behavior and report on that change: “So if you don’t, you’re going to be left behind, frankly. We have designed a suite of products that measure the carbon cost of every ad that brands serve as part of their digital advertising. So we built a comprehensive infrastructure that tracks the data transfer and electricity consumption of their advertising campaigns, then carbon offsets them in real time. So, so that’s an example where yes we started with a charity function product with a large suite of data products and now we have products that companies can use to address many social causes that they are meant to defend.