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[CRM]:  Comparing Prophet CRM with Other Similar Products

Posted on 2008-10-30
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Last Modified: 2013-11-24
I am currently using ACT6 (2002).
Although the product is no longer supported by Sage, I have resisted migrating to the current version after reading many negative reviews. Furthermore my existing P3s would be too slow for the current product and there's no compelling reason to buy new computers.

One of my clients who also uses ACT asked me about a CRM product called Prophet  www.avidian.com .

Avidian describes their product as follows...
http://www.avidian.com/crm-professional.aspx
" Prophet is a plug-in that works entirely inside Outlook. Since you are already in Outlook most of the day, Prophet adds the additional sales features that Outlook is missing, turning Outlook into a full feature Sales CRM solution. With Prophet, you work in only one application, Outlook. .... Prophet allows you to easily create, manage, share and centralize your contacts right inside Outlook. Prophet automatically associates any email, appointment or task you create for a contact in Outlook. You can also share contacts either using Outlooks public folders or through Prophets Contact Manager. " 

My client likes the idea of a more seamless integration with Outlook.

I too spend all my day in Outlook and would like to do everything there, however I have chosen not to install any of the ACT/Outlook integration (limited as it is). In my experience multi-vendor product integrations are often flakey. So my initial gut feeling would be unfavorable towards Prophet or any other product of this type.

The other thing I'm thinking is...
If you want to do everything in Outlook, why not use Microft's own product?
Not that I know anything about their product (I hear the names "Microsoft CRM" and "Microsoft Dynamics CRM" and I am not even sure if they are the same?)
However it would seem to make sense that it's better to stay with MS's own product.

So I would like to ask your advice...
(1) Is my fear of plugins unwarranted?
(2) How does Prophet compare with MS's own product?
(3) Besides the Outlook integration, how does Prophet compare in it's other CRM features with non-plugin type products such as ACT and Goldmine?
In other words, I would hate to loose the things that ACT and Goldmine do well, for the sake of better Outlook integration.  
(4) Are there any other Outlook-based CRM products on the market and how do they compare?

Any comments would be greatly appreciated.

Gary
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Question by:CE101
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by:Mike Lazarus
Mike Lazarus earned 200 total points
ID: 22848093
1. Can depend on the manufacturer... some are good, some are flaky. ACT! 2009 has a vastly improved integration with Outlook... as you your hardware, processors aren't all that critical, but RAM and HDD speed are far more of an issue (but not to expensive to upgrade

2. I haven't tried Prophet, but MS CRM is more expensive than just upgrading ACT! and will have similar issues with your hardware. It also doesn't share well unless running a proper server environment with Exchange

3. You will always lose something with changing systems...

4. Most use Exchange or MS SQL as back-ends.
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CE101 earned 0 total points
ID: 22926244
From:        CE101
Attention:  GLComputing

Thank you for your comments.

Gary
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