Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 vs. Contact Managers (Outlook, Business Contact Manager, ACT!, etc.)

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With a strong background in ACT!, I am often asked to compare the functionalities of Microsoft Dynamics CRM with a contact manager. My response is always the same, I reply with a simple automobile analogy that compares two well-known vehicles.

When comparing a Contact Manager to Microsoft Dynamics CRM, think of it as the Toyota Camry vs. a top of the line Lexus sedan. We know that Toyota and Lexus are the same company, but each vehicle is designed to fulfill the needs of its unique target market. While you have the option to get the cloth seats in the Toyota, this is not an option with the Lexus; leather seats are pretty much standard in luxury cars. The luxury car will have everything you want, need, and some features that you will never use. If you haven’t guessed by now, the Contact Manager is the Toyota and Dynamics CRM is the Lexus. With that said we can use the below chart to compare some features of Dynamics CRM to Contact managers:
CRM vs. Contact Manager

Many companies choose to purchase the Contact manager and fill in the holes using Add-On solutions. For example, ACT! does not include a marketing module, so many companies purchase Swiftpage Email (now called ACT! E-Marketing) to handle their marketing needs. Outlook can be even more limiting. Contacts and activities are completely independent of each other. This means that there is no link between an activity and contact, which means you do not have the ability to report on the number of interactions you have had with any particular contact or group of contacts. There are many examples that we can go through, but I think you get the point.

Dynamics CRM is very much the Holy Grail when it comes to CRM. All of the outlined features are included and the user experience is very familiar when combining Dynamics CRM with Outlook. For a low monthly payment per user, each user can have a full CRM experience without suffering the limitations of a contact manager. As a matter of fact, Dynamics CRM is considered one of the most feature rich CRM products on the market. If you are a “bang for your buck” shopper, this product will be very appealing.

To learn more about the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Click Here

Register for a FREE trial of Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online Click Here

Please feel free to contact FMT Consultants today if you have any questions about how Microsoft Dynamics CRM can improve your business!
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 by FMT Consultants, California Microsoft Dynamics CRM Partner

1 thought on “Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 vs. Contact Managers (Outlook, Business Contact Manager, ACT!, etc.)”

  1. I really liked the analogy of the Camry & Lexus. We are searching for a contact management system because Microsoft has stopped supporting BCM. We have been searching for templates already created in Dynamics CRM to take the place of BCM. Not an easy task or find! But what I have found is there are a LOT of firms looking for the same solution I am seeking. The obvious result of my searching is there are LOTS of people out there that just want the Camry, and the obvious question is why is there not a simple BCM template available. Serve the masses and you will dine with the classes !!! thanks


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