• July 15, 2008
  • By Marshall Lager, founder and managing principal, Third Idea Consulting; contributor, CRM magazine

Entellium Builds a CRM Suite to Rave About

Entellium, a provider of on-demand CRM and sales force automation tools, today released Rave Plus and Rave Complete as the newest products in its suite -- an overall package built around the concept of Gamer-Influenced Design to make a truly compelling and attractive interface. Appearance may not be everything, but it certainly helps when trying to get users to accept new business software.

The new products are designed explicitly for small businesses:

  • Rave Plus is intended for sales teams of up to five members, especially those new to automated business processes.
  • Rave Complete is best for a team of up to 20 and contains more supporting features for lead management, sales processes, sales forecasts and performance.
In addition, two of Entellium's other offerings integrate with Complete:

  • Rave Insight, which is included with Complete, provides reporting, analytics, and benchmarking to help customers understand business trends and gauge performance against a database of best-in-class metrics, according to the company -- presented in a format that resembles that of a videogame's player rankings.
  • Rave Marketing, a product for the creation of email campaigns and multitouch marketing programs with real-time campaign reporting, is also available for Complete; continuing the gaming metaphor, Entellium calls Rave Marketing a "power-up."  

"Entellium’s focus on small business led us to take a totally new, unique approach to CRM design away from traditional, uninspiring business software," said Paul Johnston, president and chief executive officer of Entellium, in a statement. "The new Rave suite is the result of extensive research about what makes small businesses tick, combined with a passion to provide a powerful product that does more than present and store data. Our industry has rallied around software-as-a-service [SaaS], and more recently, the developer and platforms. We’ve decided to rally around the sales person with a revolutionary new approach." (For more about Rave and Gamer-Influenced Design, see the upcoming August 2008 issue of CRM magazine.)

Small business is the place to play, according to Peter Marston, CRM analyst with Forrester Research. "The general thought around the industry is that the small business is where the growth opportunity is," Marston says. "You see it with SAP’s Business ByDesign, and also the Oracle on-demand product, reaching downmarket," he says, adding that the goal is to reach a larger number of smaller customers. Entellium’s combination of usability and small-business focus makes it a worthy competitor in the segment, he says. "Entellium is a lesser-known organization, but they have a very strong strategy; they just need to keep working on putting awareness out there that Salesforce.com isn’t the only SaaS CRM vendor."

Entellium also announced a partnership with Boomi On Demand to power Entellium’s Rave Integrate service offering. This service, available in Q3 2008, will enable Entellium CRM customers to integrate with other SaaS and on-premise applications without the need to buy into a developer platform. The first planned integration service will automate routine activities between Rave CRM solutions and QuickBooks, according to Entellium. The company will also resell Boomi On Demand to customers that may have other needs in terms of system integration.  

"Entellium’s new prepackaged integration service helps SMBs push through the integration knothole and get more value from both their Entellium and QuickBooks solutions," said Laurie McCabe, vice president of SMB insights and business solutions at analyst firm AMI-Partners, in a statement. "By enabling customers to flexibly link processes between the two applications, the Boomi On Demand service can help customers streamline business processes without breaking the bank."  

"This is a reflection of how the integration capabilities SaaS solutions have had in the past haven’t been too great," Marston says. "Previously, on-demand was seen as a cheap fix, but customer demand is such that SaaS vendors need a way to support different processes." 

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