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Mention me

17 Feb 2022 By Uthish Ranjan

Investment thesis 

  • The effectiveness of traditional customer acquisition in B2C businesses via paid channels is diminishing. The key reasons for this are rising costs (hence lower ROIs) and consumers becoming increasingly overwhelmed by endless advertisements.
  • Given these challenges, CMOs will increasingly favour alternative acquisition channels to make up for reduced performance in traditional approaches
  • One such channel is referral marketing – the heart of Mention Me’s platform. Referral marketing, when executed correctly, is a highly efficient way to acquire more attractive customers for a brand. We believe it will form a far greater part of marketing budgets over the coming decade, as brands prioritise nurturing direct and trusted relationships with their customers 
  • Mention Me is the European leader in referral marketing, serving over 400 brands including household names such as Puma, Pret a Manger, ASOS, M&S and Huel. It’s favoured as the premium solution in its space, with its data-driven approach and strong track record of achieving high ROIs for customers
  • Given the richness of data underpinning Mention Me’s platform, we believe the product will also play a strategic role in optimising customers’ other marketing channels, leading to product-led growth opportunities in the future
  • Building on Mention Me’s success in Europe, our funding will support the business’s plans for US expansion and product development, supporting its growth as it becomes the go-to product for customer advocacy over the coming years

Who are the pioneers

Mention Me was founded by Andy Cockburn and Tim Boughton, who met at VC-backed consumer startup HomeAway.com, before its $3bn IPO on the NASDAQ. Andy is a seasoned operator of high growth companies, previously holding the role of UK MD at HomeAway.com and founding social payment start-up Wigadoo prior to that. Tim spent the best part of a decade at HomeAway.com where he laterally held the role of European CTO, leading four multi-disciplinary engineering teams.

Why us

The customer acquisition landscape is shifting, and new approaches are needed. At Octopus Ventures, we have a long history of backing high growth consumer businesses, including Bought by Many, Cazoo and Depop. This has given us a firsthand insight into the customer acquisition challenges companies face as well as an extensive network of consumer companies — both of which made us a natural fit for Mention Me.

Mention Me’s track record speaks for itself; its data-driven approach to customer referrals chimes with the disruptive style of some of the major success stories from our consumer portfolio. With our success in supporting B2B software businesses such as Ometria, Permutive and Natterbox as they scaled, Mention Me recognised the expertise and networks we’ve built up in supporting similar staged software companies.

As they look to expand to the US, we’re extremely well-positioned to support with the New York branch of our Talent Team, while our Venture Partners are already working with the company on go-to-market strategies. All of this, coupled with a strong alignment in values, makes us the perfect fit; huge congratulations to the Mention Me team — we’re extremely excited for the next chapter.

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Written by Uthish Ranjan
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