TORONTO — Marketwire, known for its press release distribution service, has rebranded as “Marketwired” and brought on board a new head of product to launch new marketing technologies.

Stu Ogawa, former VP of business intelligence at Yahoo, joins the newly renamed Marketwired as global EVP of product and technology -- a position that had been vacant for about a year. Ogawa will help bring the new platform Marketwired Resonate to market in late fall, said James Delaney, who joined as COO of the company last year. 

Resonate is currently being beta tested by 300 users on the brand and agency side, and will allow users to cull social intelligence to craft and distribute releases, and also monitor influencer mentions.

For example, the platform will introduce an Influencer Relationship Module that pulls insight from Sysomos, a social media monitoring and analytics platform that Marketwired acquired in 2010, to identify key influencers in a particular vertical. These influencers will be invited -- or pitched -- the release via a link that leads to an online portal, so that open rates can be tracked and readers can interact with the content via comments. Plus the platform monitors sites - like Twitter and blogs -- so users can track whether the link or content is shared.
“We will continue to support our traditional distribution channels," Delaney said. The ongoing beta testing will help to finetune details.

Marketwired also launched a Twitter bioseach feature that allows users to see’ bios on Twitter when searching the platform as part of Marketwired's MAP and Heartbeat products, both which are powered by Sysomos. 

Last month, former rival Cision announced a partnership with Marketwire to provide press release distribution. In January, Cision’s newly-appointed global CEO Peter Granat told the Holmes Report he expected press release distribution to continue to constitute only a small piece of its overall business. 

Meanwhile, Delaney maintains that “wire distribution is still very important” to the company and traditional distribution is now one aspect of how its releases are pushed out.

“We’re now thinking about it in a more connected, two-conversation way,” he added.

For the last 12 months Suresh Kumar, VP of Marketwired’s research and development, has been the interim head of tech and product. When Ogawa joins in mid-April, Kumar will report to him.

Marketwired’s rebranding effort has been done with support from Wasabi Rabbit for branding and digital, and Geben Communications and Deirdre Breakenridge for PR.