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Cirrus Insight Gives Salesforce Users DIY Flexibility
July 18, 2013
When Cirruspath wanted to update its Cirrus Insight Gmail extension for Salesforce.com, it asked clients to draw it a picture. The result is what it calls a complete redesign that integrates lead tracking through Salesforce.com seamlessly into Gmail. First and foremost among the features in the new Cirrus Insight upgrade is the ability for users to customize the extension.
Feds Reach for Cloud CRM
July 17, 2013
The U.S. Department of Commerce is planning a major upgrade of its CRM capabilities, which is likely to include a multiyear contract opportunity for a cloud-based CRM system. The project underscores the increasing awareness of federal agencies of the potential use of cloud configurations for CRM projects. One of the major objectives is to foster an enterprise-wide approach to CRM.
Amazon Drops Its Fees
July 17, 2013
Amazon last week announced that it was lowering its fees for on-demand infrastructure by as much as 80 percent. Should we be rejoicing, or is this a sign that something is amiss? Around the turn of the century, something similar happened in two situations. The first was that telecommunications companies and cable companies buried enough fiber optic cable to satisfy demand for a long time.
New ClearSlide App Paves Sales Reps' Mobile Path to Cloud Content
July 16, 2013
ClearSlide has already released several mobile apps targeting salespeople on the road, and recently it rolled out another key piece of its platform in mobile form. Dubbed "Connect," the new app for iOS devices gives users mobile access to marketing and sales collateral stored in the cloud, such as presentation decks, white papers and videos.
Financial Sector's Gaze Fixed Firmly on the Cloud
July 13, 2013
A persistent myth in the tech world is that major enterprises in highly regulated industries are risk-averse and reluctant to adopt new technology innovations. In the case of the financial services sector, this has not been the case for years, and it is being disproved again as a growing number of financial institutions aggressively pursue a widening array of cloud computing alternatives.
Love 'Em or Hate 'Em, There's IT Gold in Those FFEs
July 10, 2013
The policy debate that has been raised by the Obama administration's healthcare reform program continues to smolder -- and even break into heated rhetoric when political supporters and critics of "Obamacare" get into the fray. However, in the three years or so that the program has been under way, its information technology gears have been turning right along.
Pipeliner 5.2 Keeps CRM in Sync
July 08, 2013
After making its beta debut back in 2009, Pipeliner CRM software recently graduated to version 5.2, bringing with it the ability to automatically sync data in near real time -- for both Mac and PC computers -- locally or through the cloud. "This is key for salespeople that work globally," said Nikolas Kimla, founder and managing partner of Pipelinersales.
Who's the Customer? Deux-Dot-Oh
July 03, 2013
I think I have used this title before, but this is in a whole different context. Also, this is a short piece because I know you are likely out contributing to the leisure economy as you should be. This will be here when you get back. I couldn't help but make one more comment on the Oracle-Salesforce announcements of last week because I see them as an important watershed.
Microsoft Plays Collaboration Catch-Up With Updated Dynamics CRM
July 02, 2013
Microsoft on Tuesday morning unveiled the latest iteration of its Microsoft Dynamics CRM software complete with enhancements including Skype, Yammer and Lync integration as well as extended availability of MarketingPilot. Due for widespread release this fall, the software will also bring long-awaited functionality for iOS and Android smartphones.
Adobe Snaps Up Neolane in Marketing Automation Push
July 01, 2013
In an effort to build its cross-channel marketing capabilities, Adobe on Thursday announced that it will acquire Neolane, a provider of cross-channel campaign management technology, in a $600 million cash deal. Neolane integrates online and offline marketing data from across an enterprise, performing audience segmentation and delivering marketing messages across numerous channels.
Intercom Connections Aid $6M Funding Round
June 21, 2013
Intercom, which offers businesses a tool to create personalized communications with customers, has secured some $6 million in a Series A round of funding. The Social+Capital Partnership, founded by former Facebook VP Chamath Palihapitiya, handled the fundraising. Some prominent tech players have attached their names to Intercom, including Twitter founder Biz Stone and Facebook exec Paul Adams.
Federal Agency Demands, Competition Challenge Cloud Vendors
June 18, 2013
The GAO earlier this month found two key deficiencies in a cloud contract that the CIA intended to award to AWS. The GAO decision was prompted by a protest against the contract filed by IBM. GAO is the designated federal agency for handling challenges to federal contracts. The proposed contract provides for commercially managed cloud computing services for the federal intelligence community.
CRM Vendors Are the Worst CRM Practitioners
May 31, 2013
I've worked as a journalist covering CRM, and I've worked with vendors trying to explain and educate potential customers about CRM. In both roles, I've seen one troubling trend that very few vendors seem able to buck. That trend is this: Most CRM vendors suck at CRM. I know -- if anyone should get CRM right, it should be the CRM vendors. They should be modeling proper usage to their customers.
Budget Roadblocks Stymie Federal IT Managers
May 14, 2013
Government information technology managers will no doubt spend every nickel of the Obama administration's 2014 proposed IT budget of $81 billion. They will also likely be dissatisfied with the business environment that affects IT acquisition and deployment. For starters, the proposed 2014 budget for IT, which actually shows a small gain versus anticipated 2013 spending, is not a sure thing.
SugarCon 2013: New Direction, Old Message
April 10, 2013
Sugar CRM took its annual customer and partner show on the road this week and brought what had been a Bay Area extravaganza to the Big Apple -- the better to attract a sizable population of customers and partners from Europe and other points beyond North America. It seems to have worked, because even though New York is one of the most cosmopolitan of cities, I heard a lot of European languages in the corridors, and I met many people from countries across the Pacific.
Fed IT Contract Window Still Open - but Budget Is Pinching
April 09, 2013
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is seeking a broad range of information technology products and services with a potential contract value of $80 million over 10 years. That's a nice chunk of business, and it's just one of many potential federal IT contracts now available. In addition to providing these opportunities, federal agencies have remained active in awarding major IT contracts.
Colosa Builds Better BPM Into SugarCRM
April 04, 2013
SugarCRM and Colosa are getting set to debut a new Sugar module based on a visual tool that lets users design business process workflows inside SugarCRM. They'll be able to control the way tasks get routed; track how long it takes to complete; and control which screens get displayed and their order. The module, ProcessMaker SugarCRM Edition, contains a full BMPN 2.0 designer and engine.
Marketo Winds Up for Risky IPO
April 03, 2013
Marketing automation company Marketo filed paperwork with the SEC on Tuesday to launch an initial public offering valued at $75 million. The company has not yet proposed a stock price. It does say in the filing that it is considered an "emerging growth company," and it plans to list on Nasdaq under the symbol "MKTO." The most telling portion of the filing was the company's description of risks.
Fed IT Funds Circle Drain Due to Poor Procurement Policies
March 27, 2013
Federal agencies routinely pass up opportunities to improve information technology performance, and save money at the same time, by failing to seek vendor competition in the procurement process, according to a recent survey. Federal IT professionals revealed that their agencies could save as much as $15.8 billion per year.
Feds Stoke IT Vendor Competition
March 20, 2013
The continuing debates in Washington over federal government spending may be tiring to most Americans. The discussions have ranged from the political primaries a year ago, through the federal elections last fall, and now well into 2013. On the other hand, constant attention to better management of taxpayer funds may yield some better ideas -- and better actions -- for eliminating inefficiencies.

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