When most marketers use the word ‘data’, what springs to mind are large sets of numbers, Excel spreadsheets, cloud-based IT systems and complicated algorithms. Big data speak is the mot du jour. There is even a big data Week in London called the Festival of Data.
The latest version of Microsoft's cloud-based CRM system, released today, offers users in-applications access to 30,000 sources of news, financial and social information.
The new streams of information in the latest edition of Dynamics – dubbed Social Insights – are courtesy of a Microsoft partnership with InsideView.
"Until now, CRM users (whether they have a marketing, sales or account management role) were left to their own devices to discover and assemble insights manually. They searched thousands of financial, news and social sources in the cloud to find information that is essential to their success," InsideView's founder and CEO, Umberto Milletti, wrote in a blog entry.
"Marketing departments and sales teams have found themselves in the data aggregation business, trying to combine social media with financial information into their marketing workflow. This has been a very time consuming, inefficient proposition—usually with poor results.
"Starting today, users of Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online don’t have to spend time searching for information any longer, as real-time information aggregated from over 30,000 financial, news, and social sources appears natively within their CRM workflow."
Basic access to Social Insights will be free for customers using the Microsoft-hosted version of Dynamics.
The cloud-based edition Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013 is available from today for Australian customers; the on-premise edition of Dynamics and deployments hosted by Microsoft partners will be available from the end of the month.