Contactually is the July 2012 SugarCRM App of the Month. Automatically aggregate all your contacts and conversations from email, social media, and your phone and sync them with your Sugar account. Receive reminders to follow up with the most important people. Visit the SugarForge project.
Name, title and brief bio?
Tony Cappaert is the Co-Founder of Contactually.
When you designed and built this app, what problems were you looking to solve for SugarCRM users?
When we first built Contactually, we hoped to solve two problems for SugarCRM users, particularly users that weren't logging into Sugar every day. First, we wanted to make it extremely easy -- nearly 100% automatic -- for users to aggregate all of their contact info from email and social media, sync it with Sugar, and keep it up to date. If a colleague changed her phone number or job title, we wanted to automatically update her info in Sugar.
Second, we wanted to help Sugar users regularly follow up with their most important contacts. While you can set specific reminders and tasks in Sugar today, it still takes a lot of work. With Contactually, we'll analyze your history with each each contact in your network, determine who's most important, and prompt you (via a daily email reminder) to reconnect with folks that are slipping off your radar.
Ultimately, we've built a personal assistant for your professional network. We do all the heavy lifting to make sure all of your contact info is always updated in Sugar and that you're in regular touch with your top contacts. For most of our users, this ultimately leads to stronger relationships and more sales.
What inspired you to build this app?
Honestly, we were scratching our own itch. My co-founders and I have a lot of contacts: from friends and family to customers, vendors, employees, and potential leads. We were terrible at adding new contacts to our CRM (or keeping the info up to date) and, more importantly, we found ourselves struggling to stay in touch with the people that really mattered. We wanted a system that would do nearly everything for us, so we decided to build it.
What attracted you to being a part of the Sugar ecosystem?
The biggest element that attracted us to Sugar was really the openness of the ecosystem and Sugar's willingness to work with early-stage startups like ours. Sugar's increasingly become the go-to CRM for small business owners and we wanted to help make the product even better, while reaching more and more users.
What other apps have you been involved with in the Sugar ecosystem?
We haven't directly worked with any other apps in the Sugar ecosystem so far, but we're other actively seeking out other interested partners and VARs. If you'd like to work with us, please get in touch!
What has been the most rewarding part of being a part of the Sugar ecosystem?
The diversity of other apps and companies in the ecosystem has been the most eye-opening and rewarding aspect so far. We recently demoed at the SugarCon App Throwndown and got to meet many other app developers; we were blown away by the cool stuff we saw. The Sugar team themselves have also been amazing to work with as we get more and more plugged into the community.
How has Sugar's open ecosystem and vast community made building this app?
When we first launched the SugarCRM integration with Contactually, we reached out to dozens of folks in the Sugar community to get feedback. Everyone so far has been very willing to experiment with our latest features and provide honest feedback, without which we couldn't have made the product what it is today.
What do you want to build next for Sugar?
We're 100% focused on Contactually for the foreseeable future, and we're always improving and adding new features. In the near term, we'll be adding a deeper integration with Sugar, such that all emails (in addition to contact data) also automatically sync with your Sugar account. We're also adding social stream data (from Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter) and will launch a mobile app by the late summer.
There's definitely a ton of updates coming -- stay tuned! If you're interested, sign up for free 30-day trial at www.contactually.com.
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