Microsoft is gearing up for the release of the next major update to its customer relationship management (CRM) platform, Dynamics CRM 2015, the company announced today.
The revamped CRM software, along with enhancements to Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online and Microsoft Dynamics Marketing services, is scheduled to ship during the fourth quarter of 2014. New features are aimed at exposing more of the marketing aspects of running a business to sales professionals and improving interoperability with the company's own ecosystem of productivity software and services.
Features include a new drag-and-drop email editor with predefined templates. For experts at HTML and CSS, an advanced editor mode helps marketers craft customized email communications. An updated Campaign Management Console supports A/B testing and embedded cross-campaign offers.
Key to Dynamics CRM 2015's goal of getting salespeople and marketers on the same page is a new Sales Collaboration panel. According to documentation from Microsoft, the interface gives sales teams "visibility into the campaign activities and can control communications targeting their customers as well as setup and receive alerts based on their interactions.
"B2B marketers can capitalize on the product's improved lead scoring—plus the ability to leverage multiple lead scoring models—and Webinar integration. Integrated social listening capabilities provide sales organizations with sentiment analysis and insights on consumers' attitudes toward their brands.
The software's new social listening features stem from Microsoft's acquisition of Netbreeze in March. Bob Stutz, corporate vice president of Microsoft Dynamics CRM, said in a March 19 statement that the Swiss company's "technology is unique in the way it combines modern methods from natural language processing (NLP), data mining and semantic text analysis to support 28 different writing systems. ... This is a huge benefit over competing solutions that translate to a common language then analyze sentiment from there."
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