It’s been a while since I wrote about how our sales and marketing teams use Zoho. When we first implemented the CRM system a couple of years ago we learned how to adjust our lead qualification and pipeline processes to best take advantage of some universal workflows. We developed an efficient methodology for qualifying potential customers and moving them through the sales process.

Like almost any other software platform there were things that we discovered that we really liked, and others not so much. For example, we did really like the ease of implementing mass email campaigns and narrowing down our targets without having to interface with another system, however we really miss having integrated metrics so we can measure our effectiveness. So we have found that there is always a trade off, and for the most part we have made the system work very well for us.

So Zoho has recently improved it’s Campaign functionality. They have made some changes that make this much more useful in terms of tracking marketing activity and associating leads and contacts to marketing efforts. That’s the good part. The not so good part is that I discovered this only after discovering some fields that we normally use were missing from the Leads detail page. After doing some initial investigation and contacting support we did in fact find a help article that outlined how to use this new functionality.

The fact that a major (or at least to us) part of our workflow changes without notification caused me to think about our process and whether or not we are pro-active enough when it comes to software updates/changes and improvements. Zoho is an innovative company with a lot of software offerings. They are constantly working to improve their platform and the overall result of these changes will be increased productivity and visibility for our team.

Some of the changes to this feature set include the ability to associate multiple leads/contacts to a specific campaign so you can better track the effectiveness of the campaign. We had tried to use this feature previously, but either through our interpretation of the feature or their implementation we just didn’t quite get it. So we used it as just a secondary lead tracking mechanism.  The improvements made to this feature set are a big step forward towards some integrated metrics that would make Zoho CRM an even more killer app for us.

Our overall experience with Zoho over the years has been positive mainly because we have been able to communicate with the company when we have encountered something that we felt either didn’t work correctly or could be improved upon.  There have been a couple of instances where we made a suggestion and it was implemented within a matter of days. Now whether that was already a planned upgrade and a happy coincidence or they actually listened really doesn’t matter from our perspective. They listened and implemented our suggestion. That is a powerful approach to customer service and one that I hope we continue to embrace as we continue our work on SIx.

I look forward to the discovery of the next improvement.