Ahead of Convergence 2014, Microsoft is firming up its Dynamics CRM release plans for marketing, customer care, and social in the second quarter of 2014.
The updates, summarized in a new announcement, set up the company’s next steps with Microsoft Dynamics Marketing (formerly MarketingPilot), customer care (including Parature and native enhancements), and Microsoft Social Listening (based on NetBreeze).
These updates correspond to past roadmap guidance related to Mira for campaign management and MarketingPilot integration, Leo as the major Q2 2014 release for CRM Online that included case management enhancements, and Subra for delivering the re-platformed NetBreeze capabilities.
Microsoft Dynamics Marketing
Microsoft Dynamics MarketingThe new release of Microsoft Dynamics Marketing builds on MarketingPilot’s marketing planning core and adds new features that include a visual campaign designer. These new capabilities will be offered in 35 markets in 10 languages and will broaden the integration with Dynamics CRM.
The new Dynamics Marketing release “delivers these capabilities by adding marketing automation functionality to Microsoft Dynamics CRM,” according to Microsoft. It also includes new lead management and scoring capabilities, scalable email marketing that can deliver millions of messages per day, and marketing analytics, according to the company.
Customer care: A new Unified Service Desk, Parature integration
In a related blog post, Dynamics CRM CVP Bob Stutz wrote that with the upcoming release’s combination of case management and customer service enhancements “we are giving companies true omni-channel customer care capabilities driven by knowledge.”
The release include a new “Unified Service Desk,” framework for customer service agents that integrates CRM and legacy data, allows for multiple interactions simultaneously, and manages automated, repetitive tasks. And according to Stutz, configuration is easy – not a compliment given to past customer service frameworks for Dynamics CRM.
Microsoft Social Listening
And the roadmap for NetBreeze appears to be on track, with the service now at the heart of Microsoft Social Listening. The service, planned for rollout first as standalone technology in Q1 of 2014 and then as part of Dynamics CRM in Q2, re-introduces NetBreeze as a Microsoft-branded enterprise-ready solution running on Windows Azure and SQL Azure and provisioned as an Office 365 service.
The use cases for Social Listening will already cover several roles, according to Stutz in his blog post. Marketers tracking brand sentiment and influencers. Salespeople can use the tool to track potential customers and competitors, identifying and acting on new opportunities. And customer service teams can monitor social media to identify issues.
Dynamics CRM Online customers with professional licenses – the $65 per month top rate for “core CRM user” – will receive Social Listening at no charge. On-premise customers can get the offering at an incremental cost.
By Jason Gumpert and published February 18, 2014. Shared via http://msdynamicsworld.com/story/microsoft-readies-marketing-social-listening-customer-care-updates-dynamics-crm