Unreal Time

Is It Possible to Predict Pageviews 15 Minutes Into the Future? $1.7 M. for Visual Revenue Says Yes

IA Ventures and Softbank Capital are invested.

precog Is It Possible to Predict Pageviews 15 Minutes Into the Future? $1.7 M. for Visual Revenue Says YesWhat’s cooler than real-time? New York-based Visual Revenue is building technology that purports to predict web traffic in advance. We first wrote about the startup just over a year ago when it officially launched. At the time, founder and CEO Dennis Mortensen wrote a blog post about how the company was aiming to replace the “front page editor” position that has become a staple of new media newsrooms. At the time, the New York Daily News and eight other publishers were testing Visual Revenue’s claims that it can predict how well a story will do on the front page 15 minutes in advance.

Visual Revenue offers media companies a unique Front Page Decision Support System for online Editors. The solution can predict the performance of a piece of content about 15 minutes into the future and provides editors with real-time recommendations on what content to place in which position on a Front Page and for how long.

Sounds like something BuzzFeed would be interested in. Wait, it sounds like something every web publisher would be interested in. But are we petty web readers really that predictable?

IA Ventures and Softbank Capital think so. The firms led Visual Revenue’s $1.7 million round, which will be used to hire front end and back end engineers, a lead designer, customer engagement manager and business development manager and build Visual Revenue into the “Bloomberg terminal of the newsroom,” as the company puts it.

“We’ve done REALLY well, since we spoke last,” Mr. Mortensen said in an email, pointing us to the company’s long list of customers: Forbes, Time.com, De Telegraaf, NBC, CNN Money, and Cox Media, among others. Visual Revenue appears to be doing exactly what it was doing in January of last year, we noted. “We are pretty proud of that,” he said. “No ‘pivot’ for us!”

A year, a roster of more than 35 global media partners, and an endorsement from big data mogul Roger Ehrenberg? We’re starting to worry this company may be able to predict the future or something.

Follow Adrianne Jeffries on Twitter or via RSS. ajeffries@observer.com