GRIN is making it easier for direct-to-consumer brands to collaborate and manage their relationships with influencers.
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Brandon Brown, co-founder and CEO, told Crunchbase News that his Sacramento-based company is the only influencer marketing software built specifically for e-commerce.
To further develop the technology, GRIN announced a $10 million Series A round, led by e.ventures, with participation from a group of e-commerce founders and operators. The new funding brings the company’s total raised to $19.3 million since it was founded in 2014, which includes a $6 million seed round in 2019, according to Crunchbase data.
How it works
Brown has been in marketing his entire career and started GRIN after leading marketing efforts in Los Angeles and Orange County for Red Bull. He and his team would manage a whiteboard with hundreds of influencers on it to chronicle the last time they met with the person to deliver product and learn about what they were working on.
Rather than utilize the whiteboard or the typical spreadsheet method, Brown wanted to digitize and automate the process.
“Influencer marketing is when brands collaborate with people–mostly on social media–to drive outcome, trust and content related to a brand,” Brown said. “When this is run in-house, it is usually done using spreadsheets, which makes for a messy process.”
With GRIN, brands can manage the full lifecycle of the relationships from the discovery of an influencer to recruitment and relationship management, to content creation, as well as payment, compliance, reporting and analytics.
The new funding will be used to expand GRIN’s go-to-market strategy and lay the groundwork for moving into new use cases by building the world’s first opinion leader platform.
“We want to become the system of record that brands use internally for influencer marketing,” Brown added.
Although the company was founded in 2014, GRIN as it is today really got its start in 2017, and in the past three years, the company has grown quickly, he said.
“Influencer marketing is the most critical component of the high-growth direct-to-consumer brand playbook,” said Dylan Whitman, who co-founded BVAccel. “GRIN’s product stands out as the clear e-commerce leader in this space as the platform handles everything from revenue attribution, to product fulfillment to payments in a smooth and simple way.”
Photo of Brian Mechem, Brandon Brown and Ryan Brown courtesy of GRIN
Blogroll illustration: Li-Anne Dias
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