• July 31, 2008
  • By Marshall Lager, founder and managing principal, Third Idea Consulting; contributor, CRM magazine

Summer Landslides Strike Salespeople

On-demand sales force automation (SFA) vendor Landslide Technologies yesterday delivered its Summer 2008 Release product update. The newest version of the sales effectiveness solution sports a redesigned user interface (UI) -- requiring fewer clicks to reach key information -- as well as a number of new capabilities for tracking people and deals.

The goal with the new UI was to make Landslide fit the way salespeople prefer to work, says Razi Imam, Landslide's founder and chief executive officer. Approximately 80 percent of sales tasks can now be accomplished without leaving the main screen, according to the company. Furthermore, the workflows have been redesigned so that, again in about 80 percent of cases, no more than two or three mouse clicks are needed to get to required information. "Salespeople detest multiple clicks and clickstreams," Imam says. "Landslide's work style is anchored in the sales workspace, uses the minimum number of clicks, and has a simple and clean interface."

Landslide's new functions include a mashup with social networking vendor InsideView. Built-in access to InsideView's SalesView application lets Landslide users access customer and executive profiles, company news, and executive relationships from within the Landslide interface, according to the company.

Another key update is an expansion of Landslide's unique VIP service, which offloads to a live agent such administrative tasks as updating contact records. The new "eVIP" -- the "e" stands for "executive" -- adds something for upper-level sales management -- so-called sales information officers (SIO) -- providing them with an agent to help define and track relevant sales metrics and create reports and updates, according to the company.

The Landslide Summer 2008 Release also includes:

  • expanded sales-process features;
  • email prospecting; and
  • support for key performance indicators.
One of those sales process features deserves special mention: Landslide allows users to track not only their own activities on a particular account, but the prospect's as well. A display of activities over time shows whether the prospect has downloaded or opened sales materials, made calls or performed Web inquiries, and more. "Landslide is starting to understand the buy cycle and the sell cycle together," says Jim Dickie, partner with sales effectiveness research firm CSO Insights. "SFA can track everything we do as sellers; Landslide tells you what the customer did."

"Landslide is one of the best little companies that nobody knows about," says Rob Bois, research director with AMR Research. "It solves a lot of the problems we talk about all the time, and is useful for both the sales user and the sales manager." Bois says the management tie-in will be crucial if Landslide is to gain market traction. "Landslide can continue to sell virally to sales users, but for big deals it needs buy-in from managers as well."

News relevant to the customer relationship management industry is posted several times a day on destinationCRM.com, in addition to the news section Insight that appears every month in the pages of CRM magazine. To contact the editors, please email editor@destinationCRM.com.

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