We know how you feel. You start a business with a single system for all your contacts, preferably Google Contacts. You watch your business prosper, all your efforts come true and finally, there comes a day when you need a contact manager. High five! At this point, you start your relationship with us, Zoho ContactManager and decide that this is the right contact management tool, which fits your business needs. Everything is going great, and you start with a blank slate and a brand new contact manager. But as they say – old habits, die hard. All the contacts you have gathered over the years, they would look great in your brand new contact manager. Don’t you think?
It was around noon, on a normal workday, and Dave was at his desk as usual, designing a floor plan for his new client, while humming along to a song that was playing on his stereo system (Dave is a successful architect and runs his own design studio). It was ‘Hotel California’ by The Eagles. As the guitar solo played along, he dropped the pencil and started acting as if he was holding his guitar. He was pretty good with the guitar, and used to jam with a couple of friends on the weekends. Dave was so engrossed in the song, that he was pulling riffs on his ruler, imagining it to be his guitar’s fret board. As he came out of his fantasy, he began to ponder about taking the plunge, and starting a career as a guitarist. But he loved architecture way too much to let go of it. So he mulled taking up a dual career; architect at day, and guitarist at night. It was not long before he became famous in the music circuit. Gradually, he began performing at local concerts on weekends.
He used to meet new people everyday; people like fellow musicians, vocalists, audio engineers from the music industry and people like realtors, interior designers from the architecture & design industry. Keeping track of so many people was turning out to be quite a herculean task. After all, he was pursuing a dual-career, and both these professions revolved around people. As time passed by, he felt the need for some to manage his vast list of contacts. Initially, he felt that an address book would fit his needs. As he began evaluating some of the most popular address books on the market, he started to realize that they offered very limited functionality. The next option was to try a sales automation solution, but he felt such a tool would be overkill for his modest needs like managing contacts, scheduling tasks and tracking work assignments.
The search for an ideal solution came to an end when he heard about ContactManager, which was suggested by a fellow musician during an open jam session. Dave was delighted when he tried his hands at ContactManager. It was just the right mix of simplicity and functionality.
Why did Dave love ContactManager, and how did he use it?
1) He classified and sorted all his contacts using Tags. Contacts were classified by profession into architecture or music. Contacts from the architecture industry were classified as realtors, designers, carpenters and engineers while contacts from the music industry were classified as composers, pianists and vocalists.
2) He collaborated with fellow musicians using Feeds. Music notes and sample recordings were uploaded directly from the cloud. Everyone involved in that music album could easily collaborate online and bring about a symphony.
3) He marked all ongoing music assignments and architecture projects as Deals. He also scheduled tasks and reminders under each of these deals so that he wouldn’t lose track of anything.
Sometimes a CRM system is way too overwhelming for your small business, while a simple address book is completely inadequate, resulting in missed opportunities. ContactManager is the perfect fit. Find us here: https://www.zoho.com/contactmanager
While all characters in this post are fictional, whatever we mentioned about ContactManager is extremely real!
You enter your favorite café. You are greeted with the same familiar warm smile! “The usual?” you are asked. You smile in agreement, and get yourself seated in your favorite seat overlooking the driveway. Within a few minutes of comfortable wait, there comes your favorite expresso, along with a copy of the Times “Here you go, sir! Double Shot, just the way you like it!” You smile, totally wondering which is a more pleasant experience – sipping your favorite coffee from your favorite café, or the warmth with which you are being treated! Every single time!
I asked myself this question: When was the last time someone connected with me on a personal note? When was the last time I was greeted with such a warm smile? Well, I realized I have to take you back in time. My time, from my childhood!
Our neighborhood baker knew my family well. My father would just say “the usual” and the baker would give us bread for the day. He knew that we preferred french bread on weekends, and would take the necessary care to make sure it was there during weekends. We never had to tell him anything, he knew us so well. He’d quietly gift us some muffins whenever there was a family occasion. Everyone in the bakery knew everyone in the neighborhood. We might not have known many people or had many contacts during those days. But the ones we knew, we knew them well. Very well!
Can you use an axe to prune roses, or a hacksaw to chop veggies?
They may get the job done, but is either of them the right tool for the job?
A sales automation tool can manage your contacts, but is it the right tool for the job?
Isn’t it an overkill?
A contact management tool might be a better bet. Here’s why:
Across your business, you talk to customers, vendors, partners, auditors, lawyers, consultants, etc. There are many contacts in your phone and mail account as well.
A contact management tool can keep contacts and conversations indexed at one place. If someone in your team needs this information, they can find all the info in one place and avoid the trouble of scanning through multiple sources.
Contact info and conversation history are only the beginning of all the relevant information that you will need. Important Info like products purchased, customer transactions, team members, customer feedback, etc are tracked carefully. You can record, edit and maintain all this info seamlessly. In addition to pre-set and obvious info like phone, email, etc, the ability to add custom data would be a boon. For instance, lets say that you wish to have info on your contact’s pets. You can just create a new field and begin collecting info about it. If your client loves dogs and has one, it’ll be nice to ask how Fido is doing. Small things like these go a long way in building great business relationships.
What’s the use of having so much info if you can’t use it intelligently? You should be able to categorize and tag the info on specific criteria of your choice. A good contact management tool allows you to organize and label all the info as per the criteria of your choice. Despite having so many features, it goes without saying that an ideal contact management tool must be very simple and easy-to-use.
So if you are looking out for a contact management solution, why don’t you try Zoho ContactManager? It might just be the right tool for you.
We made a new year resolution to keep our services in tune with the ever evolving world, especially with respect to the rapidly growing smartphone and tablet segment. Today, we are glad to announce the release of Zoho Sync for mobile devices. You can now get automatic notifications PUSHed to your mobile phone or tablet when new emails arrive and your device’s local mail, contacts and calendar applications will sync with the web client in real time.
What’s neat is that this 2-way synchronization happens over-the-air, in the background (provided an internet connection is available) and once turned on, does not require any further manual intervention. So wherever you are, however occupied you might be doing other things, your mobile device will be up-to-date with the latest messages, event updates and contact information.
Zoho Sync functions using your mobile device’s Microsoft Exchange® ActiveSync® (EAS) account support and does not require any additional software. Since almost all the latest IOS, Android and Windows mobile devices support EAS, you can easily enable Zoho Sync on most mobile devices that run on these popular platforms. If you want to sync only mail, only mail and calendar but not contacts and so on, you can specify your options in your device’s EAS account settings.
So how is using Zoho Sync better compared to the typical IMAP setup? Let’s see:
- Instead of your mobile device having to check (poll) for updates at regular intervals, notifications are pushed from the server to the device. This improves battery life.
- You’ll receive automatic notifications on your phone the instant a new email arrives.
- You’ll receive automatic notifications about new calendar events and event updates the instant the changes are made.
- Email, calendar and contacts related actions you perform on your mobile will automatically reflect on your web client and vice versa. For example, when you read an email on your mobile, it is marked as read when you log in to the web client later on.
During our in-house tests, the syncing was smooth on the iPhone, iPad and Windows mobile devices. However, we did experience issues with certain models of Android phones. This is because of limitations induced by the customized Android versions shipped by the individual mobile makers and we are continuously working on overcoming them.
So go ahead and set up Zoho Sync on your mobile device and let it tell you that ‘You’ve got mail!’, as soon as it arrives. Be warned that once you turn on push notifications, your phone could be buzzing continuously and you might get addicted to checking mail. And do make sure you back up data before setting up the EAS account because existing data might be removed.
And please help us by sparing a few minutes in providing feedback about how this worked for you.
Has your phone started dinging yet? Coz…. you’ve got mail!
Update (26th June, 2012): Zoho Sync support is now available in all plans. Previously it was open only to users in organizations with their email hosted under the Zoho Mail Standard 15GB plan. Please request the administrator of your organization to go to the Control Panel and ensure that Zoho Sync is enabled for users. This is explained in the list of Zoho Mail feature updates made on Feb 06, 2012.
Once again, we heard you loud and clear! And today we are glad to announce that we are extending this feature to all our Professional and Enterprise plan users.
Zoho CRM for Google makes it easier for your business to collaborate, communicate and share information, all in one centralized place. If you are using Zoho CRM with your Google email address, your Calendar and Contacts are all conveniently available in the same place.
At Zoho, we want to make sure you get the most out of your user experience, so please let us know how you like this additional feature. Feel free to drop us a line if there are other enhancements you’d like to see. We love hearing from you!
Here’s a couple of enhancements from Zoho Recruit.
Access Permissions to view Client and Client Contact details
The relationship between Recruiters and Clients is the key to run a successful Recruitment Agency. Therefore, it is vital to protect all your clients’ data from unauthorized access. Zoho Recruit – Applicant Tracking System now comes with Role based and User based permissions, which allows the Recruiter Admin restrict user access to Clients’ and Client Contacts’ data. Grant your teammates access to this data only when required.
Transferring your data from one source to another takes a lot of time and effort. Recruitment data from other Applicant Tracking Systems can now be moved into your Zoho Recruit account efficiently. You can choose from below the method that suits you best, for migrating your data to Zoho Recruit:
- Import data from XLS, CSV and TSV formats – Using this method, you can import upto 1000 records at one shot.
- Import data from DOC, DOCX, PDF, RTF, TXT, HTML and ZIP formats – This method helps you automatically parse upto 200 to 300 files at a time.
- Migration tool – This method helps you to migrate huge data from any platform into your Zoho Recruit account, courtesy our integration with Rchilli.