Halifax Firm Offers Network of Influencers

As millions of people increasingly spend more time on social media, small businesses and major brands are looking for ways to reach that massive audience.

A Halifax company has developed a way to connect businesses and consumers via a network of influential people who maintain a sizable presence and following in the blogosphere and the Twitterverse.

An application created by InNetwork Inc., a new company that will allow these businesses and brands to access a network of what co-founder and chief executive officer Chris Keevill calls “influencers” to engage them in an outreach campaign to share stories.

“They would present their marketing brief to the influencer roster that they’ve selected and then the influencers could decide whether or not they wanted to take on that assignment,” Keevill said in an interview Thursday.

“These are people who are publishers, bloggers, with large Twitter followings and large audiences, who people pay attention to to help form opinions, including purchase decisions.”

Reaching consumers through myriad mediums has long been a focus for brands, and Keevill said InNetwork will automate that workflow between the marketers and the influencers.

Anyone can go on the InNetwork site and apply to be a social media influencer, making the interaction with brands and, ultimately, consumers, “easier, faster, less cumbersome and less complicated.”

“They’re harder to find than you might think, and they’re harder to build a relationship with than you might think, and it’s hard each time to go and build a campaign.”

InNetwork will also maintain a base in Toronto. Colour Social has offices in Toronto, New Brunswick and Newfoundland and Labrador.

In addition to Keevill, the other founder is Craig Rennick, former executive with startups FloNetwork and Fortiva who will serve as InNetwork’s Chief Operating Officer.

Gerry Pond, founding investor of Radian 6 and Q1 Labs, and a longtime associate of Keevill’s, has agreed to chair the board of directors.

“This is a solid team with a great idea,” Pond said in a news release.

Keevill said a list of additional investors will soon be made public.

“I can say that our first venture round (of financing) has closed and we will be announcing soon.”

*This article first appeared on The Chronicle Herald*

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