By Seth Fineberg
Atlanta - Promoting its corporate strategy to migrate customers from one solution to another within its product line, Best Software is conducting a direct and e-mail campaign, targeting ACT! users who may be ready for the company’s Sales-Logix product.
The effort’s main goal is to upgrade customers who are starting to outgrow contact management and are ready to make the transition to full customer relationship management, according to a Best spokeswoman.
The campaign features the image of a SalesLogix product box on top of an ACT! box.
The message of the campaign, which appears alongside of the box images, is an Isaac Newton quote that reads, “If I have seen farther than others, it is because I was standing on the shoulders of giants.” Below the quote, another message tells customers to “see farther with Sales-Logix, from the makers of ACT!”
Best sent over 12,000 direct mail postcards and approximately 10,000 text and HTML e-mails. Postcard leads were tracked by phone call responses, while e-mails were tracked by on-line product demo registrations and Web calls.
The postcards have an 800 number, and a note urging customers to “call now for special pricing” on SalesLogix. E-mails have a unique URL, where visitors can also register for a product features tour or an online product demo, or call the company via Web call.
Though only a week old at press time, a Best spokeswoman claimed that the company had already received “a high number of inquiries” and 38 qualified sales leads, and closed three deals from the direct mail alone.
Reseller responses to the marketing effort were mixed at best. Some say they are fielding a number of leads, while others remain unaware of the campaign.
Lynn Berman, president of Livingston, N.J.-based reseller SWK Inc., was one of those who had not heard about the ad strategy, but was hopeful for its success.
“There’s a lot of interest in CRM in general, though we haven’t done more than a handful of CRM sales lately,” Berman said. “But we believe in CRM; we have implemented SalesLogix here and couldn’t work without it.”
SWK carries Best Products almost exclusively, including the accounting software products BusinessWorks, MAS 90/200, MAS 500 and Sales-Logix.
Falconer, N.Y.-based reseller JP Diamond, on the other hand, has received numerous leads from the SalesLogix campaign and expects to do a fair amount of CRM business this year.
JP Diamond also resells Microsoft’s CRM product MS CRM, as well as GoldMine and Crystal Reports. Sales manager Jim Sirianno said he is pleased that his company can offer customers a choice, but is clearly a SalesLogix advocate.
“We’ve been selling CRM for 11 years and SalesLogix shines because it is fully customizable and one of the most robust products on the market right now,” Sirianno said. “This campaign works really well. ACT! is a good product, but customers need to know SalesLogix is there and has back-office integration that ACT! doesn’t.”
Unlike Act!, SalesLogix can be integrated with back-office accounting systems like Best’s MAS 90 and 500, and other vendors’ applications, such as Accpac International’s Advantage Series.
Like many other resellers, SWK does not rely entirely on its vendor’s marketing campaigns for sales leads. Sirianno, for one, owns his own billboard company and is able to advertise outdoors. His company, like others, also runs one-day seminars and workgroups, and participates in trade shows.
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