Justyn Howard founded Sprout Social, a social media management platform, in 2010 when it was unclear whether or not businesses would embrace Twitter and other social media sites. It received early funding from Lightbank and in February 2016 announced it had raised $42 million in Series C funding.
“Organizations are doing things with social that are very different than what they were doing just a couple years ago,” Howard said. “As these organizations start relying on social for more and more, we just have to level (our products) up.”
The company runs an eponymous platform that helps companies engage with customers, publish content and collect analytics. Its 16,000 customers include Uber, Hyatt and Microsoft. In 2015, Sprout launched Bambu, a platform that helps employees share their companies’ curated content on their personal Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts.
“Everyone, ourselves included, sort of underestimated what social would ultimately become in terms of how brands and consumers interact,” Howard told Blue Sky.
Sprout Social had 265 employees as of January 2017, up from 185 in February 2016.
Before launching Sprout, Howard worked in enterprise software sales. He lives in Chicago.