AI-powered marketing platform Alembic emerges with $9.5M

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Alembic, a startup developing marketing software that correlates customer interactions to uncover insights, today announced that it raised $9.5 million. KB Partners and OCA Ventures contributed the seed round capital, which Alembic says will be used to support growth as the startup emerges from stealth.

Marketers face increasingly difficult challenges as the pandemic disrupts the normal flow of business. Advertising budgets have fallen to their lowest recorded level, dropping to 6.4% of company revenue in 2021 from 11% in 2020, according to Gartner. At the same time, over a third of marketers say that generating high-quality leads remains one of their biggest barriers to success.

“The company started just under three years ago in November of 2018 and the initial team includes multi-exit leaders from Google, LinkedIn, Twitter, Apple, WP Engine, The Wall Street Journal, and Qualcomm,” Alembic cofounder and CEO Tomas Puig told VentureBeat via email. “Alembic was really based on our team’s experience in scaling companies and, frankly, from our own pain and suffering.”

Alembic auto-ingests data from a number of channels spanning web and mobile app traffic, social networks, news outlets, and sources of transaction and conversion data. The platform stores the extracted information and then applies algorithms to analyze, normalize, and classify the data before adding context. Finally, Alembic transforms and displays the data into summaries and metrics.

Data-driven insights

According to Puig, Alembic can determine the effectiveness of the people hired to promote discovery, as well as their value, down to an individual post. The platform can also quantify the return on investment and dollar value of inserting individual brands into strategic channels, like sporting events, games, and influencers.

“[We use an internal] machine learning-based forecasting tool [and dataset] … to provide reliable predictions for customers. The dataset is reconstructed from the moving totals of social media metrics, providing insights previously unavailable,” Puig explained. “This reconstruction and forecasting requires months of data, and customers with a sufficiently large enough audience to make these discoveries against … For an enterprise organization, this dataset typically runs billions of rows a year.”

Alembic’s “time-series reconstruction” technology tracks blog posts, articles, and videos for years to provide layers of understanding. It also integrates with Google Analytics, giving data context and tying it back into other actions and activities.

“With the pandemic, we have really seen an acceleration in the need for our tools and the types of strategic intelligence we provide. Our customers tell us they have a deep need to accelerate their understanding of what value and impact the entire marketing, brand, and media footprint is providing,” Puig said. “In addition to audience behavior changes and a move towards digital, so many things are changing for marketers. This includes Apple’s IDFA and iOS identity rules, email open by default, removal of behavioral targeting, ad-blocked behavior and no-advertising environments like streaming and gaming, and so much more. It’s a massive wave of change at a time when the amount of data available is decreasing.”

Eighteen-employee Alembic, whose customers include CakeWorks and Beyond Meat, is tapping into an AI-powered marketing segment that could grow in value to hundreds of millions of dollars in the next few years. According to Bright Edge, 60% of marketers intended to use AI to develop a content marketing strategy in 2018. And a recent report forecasts that the use of marketing automation will increase by 104% as AI-driven tools boost the productivity of back-office workers.

“Our gross margin is healthily above the standard for publicly traded companies at over 80%,” Puig added. “Many of our users do over a billion impressions a year on social media alone and some do over a billion impressions a month. We have over 200 major, high-impact brands bringing data into the platform, such as Beyond Meat, several major league sports teams, $100 million-a-year-in-revenue software-as-a-service companies, and household-name actors and musicians.”

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