ThingLink has closed a $2 million financing round for offering interactive image solutions to publishers and brands, it was announced today. This is ThingLink’s second funding announcement since launching in August 2010, to bring total funding to $3.9 million.
The round was led by Helsinki-based VC firm Inventure Oy. Participants include social media and ad tech angels from New York and San Francisco including Terrapin Bale, led by former Tumblr president John Maloney, the CEO of Fremantle Media N.A. Thom Beers, the managing partner of Trimaran Capital Dean Kehler, SoundCloud CTO Eric Wahlforss, and TEKES, the Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation.
“ThingLink has proven itself as a highly engaging media solution that enables new and creative ways for brands and consumers to connect through images. The team and I are excited to have onboard investors and advisors with strong experience in media, publishing, advertising and entertainment,” said ThingLink founder and CEO Ulla Engeström, who will relocate from Helsinki, Finland to New York City to lead the company’s growth.
As part of this funding round, ThingLink also announced new appointments to its board of directors, including Entertainment Media Ventures CEO Sandy Climan and former Facebook media sales director Craig Coblenz.
Former Meredith Publishing and Newsweek/Daily Beast executive Hillary Billingsley was also appointed as chief revenue officer.
Over 220,000 publishers, including 4 of the top 10 newspapers and 10 of the top 50 global brands, use ThingLink to transform images into an interactive surface for rich media – including video players, social links and other apps – that makes content discoverable, engageable and sellable.
Hundreds of automotive, fashion, entertainment, B2B and consumer brands have used ThingLink to introduce products, educate customers, and deploy shoppable images with interactive video, music, and information links.
ThingLink is the most popular platform for creating and distributing interactive images for blogs, web pages, social channels and advertising. ThingLink is used by more than 220,000 publishers in 46 countries, including leading newspapers and magazines, brands, digital agencies, universities, schools, and long-tail bloggers. For more information visit: ThingLink.com and ThingLinkPress.com
Drive convenience for customers and make content discoverable by adding ThingLink Rich Media Tags to your interactive images. Here’s a variety of popular apps that you can add to ThingLink images to feature content from: Etsy, Amazon, Instgram, Rdio, Bambuser, Scribd, Polldaddy, Facebook, Twitter, Yelp, Slideshare, ClickThrough, Spotify, eBay, LinkedIn, EventBrite, Google Maps, SoundCloud, Vimeo, Meetup, MailChimp, Wikpedia, Flickr and more.
ThingLink, the provider of in-image interaction tools and Rich Media Tags, today announced the creation of exclusive e-commerce tags for Apple Inc’s online retail platform, iTunes and independent artist promotional platform, Topspin. Artists hosting their music through wider audio creators platform SoundCloud can now also import third party ‘buy’ links to their profiles via ThingLink’s Rich Media Tag system.
From today, music artists and their promoters can embed ‘buy now’ links to iTunes or to a Topspin custom store in the images they use throughout the web. Any hosted image – from artist pictures, album cover art or event photography – can now be converted into an ad hoc music store, providing an innovative and engaging new method of getting new music into the hands of those who want it most.
“By providing an embeddable, direct route to purchase, ThingLink’s e-commerce tags remove another barrier between artists and fans looking to buy their music,” commented Neil Vineberg, ThingLink CMO. “As a team we’re keen to progress the conversation on how music retail is evolving, and teaming up with platforms of the calibre of iTunes, Topspin and SoundCloud can only help us to achieve that aim.”
First announced in June this year, ThingLink has brought a new dimension to images on the web via Rich Media Tags, transforming static images into navigational platforms. From hand-drawn artwork to professional photography, Rich Media Tags can be applied to any image and already allow the in-image embedding of links from some of the world’s leading social content platforms such as YouTube, Spotify, Wikipedia, Twitter, Flickr, Facebook and many more.
“We at Topspin are fans of any method of distributing artist offers, especially when the method is as simple and powerful as adding ‘buy now’ links to artist images,” says Ian Rogers, Topspin CEO. “Photos are a big source of traffic for artists, so it makes sense to attach links to artist offers and let those images travel the web.”
For more information on creating Rich Media Tags, visit ThingLink or check out out most awesome Music Guide instructing you how to make the most out of the service.
San Francisco, March 8, 2011 — ThingLink, the provider of image interaction tools, and SoundCloud, the fast-growing audio platform, today announced an innovative collaboration of technologies that enables anyone to add sound and music directly to their images. For the first time, it is possible to link a SoundCloud waveform player to any photo or picture, thereby connecting the subject to sounds, music and effects, voice annotations and narrations.
This collaboration means that SoundCloud’s more than three million registered audio creators will be able to bring additional context, interactivity and meaning to both their sounds and the images that inspire them; whether it’s to a promotional flyer, a memorable photograph or an album cover artwork. By simply scrolling over the uploaded image, a series of ‘hotspots’ appear, each one linking to a sound that can be played directly from within the picture. By using Thinglink, users can also include links to social networks, blogs, news and commerce web sites, as well as email.
“Images and sound are a natural combination and really compliment each other,” said Ulla-Maaria Engeström, ThingLink CEO. “Context invites clicks, and sound adds a new dimension to images, be it fan shots, fashion photos, or family albums.”
Alexander Ljung, founder and CEO of SoundCloud said, “This simple concept of linking sound to the images that are meaningful to you opens up endless opportunities to audio creators. Not only will it change the way artists promote themselves, their music and their live shows, but it will also allow people to add narrative to their holiday snaps, verbal descriptions to their designs or funny soundbites to their illustrations.”
An example of how this new collaboration of technologies is already being embraced, includes: Paper Garden Records, a NY-based record company and music promoter, who has created an interactiveflyerfortheirbandsatSXSW. They use ThingLink tags to link the flyer to their music samples on SoundCloud, as well as website, party venue, Facebook page and sponsors. When flyers are shared onwards via Facebook, Twitter and email, the interactive hotspots follow and bring traffic back to Paper Garden Record’s website. Further sound-filled images, including Moby, Beck and The Smashing Pumpkins, can be viewed at gallery.thinglink.com
Want to add your sounds to your website’s images? The process is quick and easy:
ThingLink, launched in 2008 by Ulla Engeström, develops tools for image interaction that allow content sharing via online images. ThingLink technology changes the way people interact with photos by transforming them into a surface for advertising, commerce, entertainment, search and social connection. Brands, publishers and bloggers utilize ThingLink in their images to share links, drive traffic, and set up image-based advertising campaigns.
SoundCloud, launched in 2008 by Alexander Ljung and Eric Wahlforss, is an audio platform that enables anyone to create, record, promote and share their sounds on the web, in a simple, accessible and feature-rich way. SoundCloud allows sound creators to instantly record audio; upload large files; share them publicly and privately; embed sound across websites and blogs; receive detailed analytics, plus feedback from the community directly onto their waveform player.
For more information, please contact:
Neil Vineberg (ThingLink)
Email: neil (a)ThingLink.com
Alice Regester (SoundCloud)
+44 7758 834 646
Christopher Buttner (Vineberg Communications)
Email: chris (a)vinebergcommunications.com