Archive for August, 2010
Many new CRM or back office implementations have requests for integrated systems. This could be the best of breed CRM and Accounting system which will need to be integrated or another solution that has both CRM and Accounting in one package. With each approach there are pros and cons.
Best of Breed Integration
The best of breed integration means that you choose the top applications and integrate the two. This can be done with a 3rd party integration or with a custom integration.
- You get two tools that are best of breed and do the job exceptionally well
- Best of breed tools usually have a following and therefore you have access to a plethora of resources such as consultants, tutorials, training and addons.
- Custom integrations can be expensive depending on the level of integration. 3rd party integrations can at times alleviate this.
- Added complexity
All in One Tool
All in one systems such as ones that do both Accounting and CRM are generally not the best of breed but offer their own set of pros and cons.
- You only have to deal with one vendor
- No integration complexities
- These systems usually don’t do either job exceptionally well compared to the best of breed applications. They do however do the job.
- Vendor lock in. With an all in one system it is more difficult to change one piece of your business changes.
Listed are only two pros and cons for each type of solution. It is up to the business to decide which one is the right path for them.
What direction did your company choose and why?
Recently I met with an individual and we got on the topic of networking and started discussing the various events that we attend. This person recommended a group called Clarity and said that it was like “BNI on steroids” and only for B2B networking.
Shortly after the discussion I attended as a guest and found out that it was in fact a BNI meeting. At that point I didn’t care because I had met a phenomenal group and realized that they did things different from what I would have expected.
Had the individual that told meet about the meeting pitched it as BNI, I might not had gone. I had been to them in the past and decided that it wasn’t a fit for my company.
This raises a few questions:
- What do customers immediately think of when they hear your name?
- Is it what you want them to think of?
- Should initiatives to break out of a certain role be part of a new brand?
These are just a few of the questions you may want to ask yourself about your companies brand image. What issues has your business encountered with your brand?
Yesterday evening I attended the Atlanta Bloggers Meetup and had the pleasure of meeting Rob Sutton who owns and operates Bike198.com. Sutton is an informative owner who was open about his operation including the ways that he generates leads, makes money and markets.
Since I have been thinking of starting a newsletter for CRMStage.com we dove into the topic to discuss how he leverages them. Here are a few of the details that I took away from the conversation.
- Non techies want something in their inbox
Even though people are all hyped up on social networking juice, many people still want data delivered.
- Gain Trust
If you have affiliate marketing it is important to gain peoples trust and make sure that they don’t always feel like they are being pitched. This seems straight forward but we have all seen companies that overdue it.
- Click through rates are much higher in newsletters
Prior to this discussion I had never researched the specific conversion rates of newsletters vs web advertising.
Do you send a newsletter for lead generation, marketing or promotions? What tips do you have?
- No public Twitter messages.