A quick Google search will reveal the 61 best, 14 most efficient, 25 sneakiest, and 24 must-have social media marketing tools. It’s in this crowded market that Kirkland startup Parllay launches its new social media marketing platform.

Launched on Wednesday, Parllay hopes to cut through the search-engine plethora of “best social media tools” to be the go-to choice for marketers to manage social channels and content.

Parllay CEO Tarek Najm. Courtesy Parllay

Parllay CEO Tarek Najm. Courtesy Parllay

“Wherever people go, brands follow. In order to reach you, (brands) have to participate in social media and brands have to be talking,” says Tarek Najm, Parllay’s founder and CEO. “They need to be present, they need to talk, and they need to communicate meaingful things.”

Parllay offers a content marketing platform as well as content aggregation and analytics systems. Platform subscriptions start at $500 per month.

Najm says the company has been working in beta with two sets of clients for about nine months. Small companies that run social channels in-house have provided direct user feedback. Large agencies that manage social presence for multiple large brands have compared Parllay’s platform to those of competitors such as Hootsuite and Buffer.

“With an incredibly cluttered social technologies space, brands and agencies typically resort to using several platforms with various log-ins in order to manage the different tasks associated with a social campaign,” Matt Haynes, the vice president of public relations firm Waggener Edstrom’s social and digital strategies, said in a statement. “Having trialed Parllay over the past several months, it’s been refreshing to use such a powerful solution with a wide array of capabilities available through a single unified platform.”

Najm and president Sherwyn Soff will be on “high alert” for the next few days to make sure the platform is operating properly and work out any bugs that surface. This comes after the team developed, tested, adjusted, and tested again. Back-breaking work at a startup doesn’t end after the launch date.

“The startup life is tough, it’s not easy. Anybody who says otherwise doesn’t know what it takes,” Najm says.

Najm worked at Microsoft for more than 15 years as an engineer and manager leading teams across the globe. He says that leading the teams and managing large budgets prepared him for starting his own company. While at Microsoft, he founded and ran the company’s adLab Research & Incubation, Search Advertising, and Audience Intelligence & Data Mining divisions.

“As a team of former data mining, advertising and knowledge engineering executives, we saw an opportunity to usher in a new wave of products to close the loop from content discovery and marketing to merchandising,” Najm says.