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What’s the Best Marketing Automation Software for Microsoft Dynamics CRM?

 

SalesFUSION Review—An Independent Marketing Software Analysis

SalesFUSION Strengths and Weaknesses

SalesFUSION Strengths:

  • The Event Manager is both unique and strong. This feature supports online and offline events such as webinars and trade shows with features such as integration to WebEx, custom invites, webinar registrations, attendance tracking and post-event surveys or follow-ups.
  • The Email Nurture Designer is an easy to use visual tool that can also assign CRM actions from the marketing automation system.
  • The application is able to run as a standalone marketing and sales solution. This may provide SMBs with a single solution for basic sales, marketing, service, task management and calendar management.
  • Similar to ClickDimensions and Silverpop CoreMotives, SalesFUSION offers a very quick deployment and fast time to value. However, marketing software buyers should recognize that while the software implementation is quick, creating the right business processes such as accurate lead scoring, relevant nurture campaigns and sales/marketing Service Level Agreements, along with the content needed for content marketing, require vastly more planning, effort and time.
  • Acquisition cost and TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) are very favorable. Pricing is based on tiers and begins at about $750 per month and goes to $3000+ per month. The primary variables which affect pricing include the volume of database contacts, the number of sending domains, select marketing software functions and various support services. Also, the marketing application can be used on multiple URLs for only $50 per month for each additional domain.
  • The company offers a 30 day free trial with customer on-boarding. This is a great option to reduce risk and get to know the vendor.
  • Customer support is very strong. According to the company, 99% of all clients have renewed annually since 2009, helping the company double revenue each of the past three years.

SalesFUSION Weaknesses:

  • Marketing software delivery is limited to the cloud (there is no on-premise or partner hosted option). Data center hosting is provided from Internap in Atlanta and Systemhost in the UK. On the plus side, hosting is supported with a Service Level Agreement (SLA) which includes a 99.999% uptime guarantee (calculated monthly) and financially backed credits for non-performance. However, on the flip side, the company does not offer a public cloud option (i.e. Amazon or Azure), online performance Trust site nor possess routine data center delivery and information security attestations such as ISO 27001 or SSAE 16.
  • SalesFUSION is developed on the Microsoft stack and makes good use of advanced technology. However, unlike most of its marketing automation software competitors, it doesn’t use a multi-tenant architecture which may have the impact of complicating or reducing the frequency of innovation or upgrades.
  • Channel reach and support is yet immature. Like direct competitors ClickDimensions and Silverpop CoreMotives, the company mainly sells through a partner channel. However, the SalesFUSION channel is significantly smaller (at about 80 partners) but growing.
  • Global reach is also limited. The company does count customers in 21 countries and has recently opened a satellite office in the UK but is yet limited in offering and supporting a true global solution.
  • SalesFUSION supports creating custom reports, such as building table views or joining tables together, but like several marketing software competitors, lead analytics are pretty basic and don’t include either data warehousing with OLAP or some of the more useful but advanced reports. For example, marketers don’t have good visibility to leads that haven’t been followed up by sales. There is a Lead dashboard that sort of shows this, but no real Lead Aging, Neglected Leads or SLA variance reporting. The only competitor in this marketing software review to provide rich lead analytics is Marketo.
  • Company viability may be a concern for some marketing software buyers. SalesFUSION is a small business (just over 40 employees) and lightly funded. That said, the company is executing well, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see the organization acquire more venture capital to excel their already impressive growth.
  • The core target market for this marketing software application is the SMB space. SalesFUSION may not be right for decentralized or larger marketing departments which require more workflow processes, asset management security permissions or advanced reporting.

Because SalesFUSION supports multiple CRM systems, it competes more frequently with marketing software competitors such as HubSpot and Marketo than the Dynamics-only competitors such as ClickDimensions and Silverpop CoreMotives. However, SalesFUSION clearly provides a similar embedded utilization and user interface as do ClickDimensions and CoreMotives, and delivers an extremely tight integration to Dynamics CRM. As more CRM software publishers acquire their own marketing automation solutions, and thereby reduce the size of what was a greenfield marketscape, you can expect marketing software providers such as SalesFUSION to further invest and penetrate the Microsoft Dynamics CRM customer base.

Next: Silverpop CoreMotives Review >>

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