SEOmoz Buys AudienceWise, Plans Hipster-Friendly Portland Office

1/23/13Follow @bromano

Cue the “Dream of the ’90s.” SEOmoz is acquiring AudienceWise, its third Portland-based buy, and will open an office in the Rose City.

The Seattle search engine and social marketing company is parting with cash and stock in the “low seven-figure” range for AudienceWise, which helps develop audiences for news and e-commerce sites. The company’s co-founders, Tim Resnik and Matthew Brown, will join SEOmoz.

SEOmoz scooped up local online search optimization and listings service GetListed for about $3 million last month, and, last June, bought Followerwonk, which does Twitter search and analysis, paying in “the low 7 figures (between 1mm and 4mm),” as SEOmoz CEO Rand Fishkin put it in a blog post.

SEOmoz’s Portland shopping spree—no sales tax!—followed last spring’s $18 million Series B funding round. All three deals have had an acqui-hire element.

“Given the amazing growth we experienced in 2012, we’re in desperate need of more flannel-swaddled, local-organic-sustainable, fixed-gear bicycle-riding talent that refuses to eat at restaurants with more than one location,” Fishkin says in a release announcing the AudienceWise deal.

The company now has more than 100 employees and 2012 sales were in excess of $21 million.

That’s the main news. If you’re a Portland native or a fan of Portlandia, may I suggest you read the full release. SEOmoz has pretty much nailed the hipster-mocking tone of the show, touting details such as the location of the new office—christened the GetWonkWisePlex, in homage SEOmoz’s three PDX acquisitions—”in a hip, up-and-coming Portland neighborhood that most people probably haven’t heard of yet.”

A caption under a photo of the (oddly beardless) Portland team lays it on thick, listing hobbies such as pickling, bike polo, and “doing local SEO before it was A Thing.”

Good fun. And I’d bet a jar of pickled chicken eggs—audited to ensure their local provenance, naturally—that it will help get the SEOmoz news in front of people who might not otherwise be interested. So probably a good marketing move, too.

Benjamin Romano is editor of Xconomy Seattle. Email him at bromano [at] xconomy.com. Follow @bromano

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