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Sage Act Hones Social, Mobile Tools for Small-Biz Marketers

By Erika Morphy
Sep 10, 2012 5:00 AM PT

Sage North America has rolled out Sage Act 2013, a new iteration of its flagship application that has been enhanced with mobile, social and email marketing capabilities, as well as new smart task automation functionality.

Sage Act Hones Social, Mobile Tools for Small-Biz Marketers

Sage ACT
(click image to enlarge)

The focus is on contemporary trends of interest to small and medium-sized businesses, said Brandon Balsley, director of Sage Act product management.

The social media enhancements are a prime example, he told CRM Buyer. "That is an area that many SMBs want more exposure to -- want help with. So we focused on the social media areas that would be of most value to them."

Social, Mobile Buildout

To that end, the application now integrates with LinkedIn and Facebook to display the last 25 posts in one view on a particular contact's record. There is also a feature that recommends contact match-ups, associating a user's Sage Act contacts with LinkedIn connections and Facebook friends.

The mobile functionality provides access to Sage Act data from iPhone, iPad or Android devices. Users can view and edit contact details and calendar items. Other information on display includes status, process and sales stage filtering, and contact and opportunity views.

The features were picked specifically with the remote and traveling salesperson in mind, Balsley said. "Mobile is exploding in terms of use, especially for sales. We are ensuring we are on top of that shift."

Focus on the Basics

The new email marketing feature set, Sage E-marketing for Act, is a subscription-based cloud service that integrates with the application's contact database. Users can create email campaigns, and they can track emails that were opened and clicked-through -- or discarded.

There are also drip marketing features that automatically send targeted messages based on responses to previous emails. Social sharing features are part of the mix, allowing recipients to post messages or offers on social media.

The workflow automation enhancement includes an expansion of Sage's Smart Task functionality. New features let users apply built-in Smart Tasks out of the box -- say, automatically changing a status to Closed-Won -- or they can build their own.

Next Year

Sage Act comes out with about one major release a year. Next year's version will continue to focus on extending mobile functionality, Balsley said. "Another area we are likely to expand is our cloud presence."

In general, "we will continue to focus on listening to customers and determining what their most pressing needs are," he added, "and delivering solutions for those needs."

Erika Morphy has been writing about technology, finance and business issues for more than 20 years. She lives in Silver Spring, Md.

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