August 24, 2012, 11:01 AM

Gannett buys a social media marketing vendor

Blinq Media says its clients include McDonald’s, Samsung and Baskin-Robbins. 

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Gannett Co. Inc., a newspaper publisher and TV station owner that’s been investing in digital properties, has bought social media marketing vendor Blinq Media LLC. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Blinq says it has more than 600 clients, a mix of agencies and brands that include McDonald’s, Samsung and Baskin-Robbins.

“This acquisition is part of our ongoing transformation at Gannett and positions us to be a leader in both local and global social media marketing,” says Gracia Martore, Gannett’s president and CEO. Among Gannett’s other recent endeavors in the space are the launch of a daily deals service last year.

Blinq will continue to operate its core business of helping marketers manage their social media marketing campaigns. It is one seven ad developers that hold two Facebook Preferred Marketing Developer badges for its ads and insights offerings. Badges are a designation that the vendor “clearly demonstrated unique capabilities that help marketers scale and achieve efficiency, and extend measurably beyond the functionality of Facebook's native tools,” the social network says.

The deal comes amid a wave of consolidation in the social media vendor space. In the past few months, Google Inc. agreed to acquire social marketing vendor Wildfire Interactive Inc., Oracle Corp. acquired social marketing vendors Collective Intellect and Vitrue, and Salesforce.com acquired Buddy Media, which sells social media marketing services.

Gannet owns 82 U.S. daily newspapers, including USA Today, and 23 TV stations. Its digital properties include PointRoll, which specializes in enriching online ads with video and other features, and ShopLocal, which converts shopping circulars to web pages for some 100 retail chains.

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