So, you like the idea of integrating social media into your Salesforce.com account via Gist but there is one little problem. You don’t use Salesforce. You use Outlook. Well, my friend, there’s now an app for that (smile). As a matter of fact, we are going to talk about two and both are free.
Now, in my humble opinion,. Outlook ain’t much of a CRM. Adding Business Contact Manager to it (Microsoft add-on), does not make it anymore so. That being said, I guess it all depends on what you want/need a CRM to do. For contacts, calendars, and emails … Outlook is great. Hell I use it on one of my businesses (smile). For much more than that … not so good.
Xobni makes Outlook better. It makes it a better email vehicle and now it makes Outlook “social”. And it does an excellent job at both. I have been using Xobni since probably the first of the year. It organizes my inbox, threads email conversations, tracks file exchanges, and has a lighting fast search. It pulls up contact information right within its unobtrusive side bar next to my Outlook inbox. Now, they have decided to make it more social. Social as in “social media”.
A couple of months ago Xobni integrated FaceBook, Hoovers, and LinkedIn into their product. A couple of weeks ago they added Twitter. I can look at my contact’s Twitter and FaceBook updates. That on top of everything else Xobni does. Xobni may be “inbox” spelled backwards. I spell it “sweet”.
Here is a partial screen shot so as to not show too much contact information. At the top of Xobni’s contact bar you will also find contact information and phone numbers (not shown). The Xobni bar is the second column from the right:
Since we are on Outlook, I did want to remind you of an excellent tool available from LinkedIn. If you look in the second column from the left of the above screen shot your will see a little blue blurb above the body of that email. That “blurb” (I’m really sorry about the resolution!) is the LinkedIn “info” bubble. Hover your pointer over that and it will open up and tell you: whether or not that individual is registered with LinkedIn, how may connections they have, what degree connection you might be related, and how many recommendations they have. LinkedIn has also made it convenient for you to invite that contact to connect with you on LinkedIn right from within this interface.
This toolbar is available by clicking here. It also does some other cool things. It has a feature called “Grab” that will allow you to highlight the signature line on an incoming email and create a contact within Outlook automatically. It will also take a look at your inbox and update existing contact information. The dashboard includes reminders of folks you may should be getting back to as it relates to previous exchanges.
I’m going to cut this post off here. These are two great tools for Outlook. I encourage you to go forth and ….explore (smile). Thanks for visiting!
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