Social CRM Company Nimble Integrates with Gmail, Outlook
Nimble, a company that offers customer relationship management (CRM) software, launched a new version today with a host of updates, including integration with Google Gmail, Microsoft Outlook and Hootsuite.

The announcement comes just a week after the company revealed partnership with Microsoft to bring CRM to the Office 365 productivity suite.

Contact Discovery

Nimble specializes in opening channels for companies to engage customers in a two-way dialogue and helps businesses find the best prospects among their contacts. It promotes itself as a one stop repository for collecting information about contacts across the social worlds.

Specifically, it pulls in a contact's social media activity, analyzes that activity for signals that are meaningful to a particular company and helps companies identify prospective customers. Now all that data can live in a Gmail, Outlook or Hootsuite account.

"Nimble recommends how to connect with a contact and what to talk about," CEO Jon Ferrara said in an interview with CMSWire.com. He described Nimble as a novel way to organize the electronic equivalent of a classic Rolodex.

Ferrara said it offers a richer profile of contacts than competing CRMs and, based on sales, customers seem to agree.

Nimble will do $1 million in business this year and from $2 million  to $3 million next year. The company has 2,000 paying customers and grows its base organically, he said. Nimble's freemium model allows people to sign up without the cost and transition to a paid version when they are ready.

But does that model work? Customers tend to convert from the trial to paid versions about 20 percent of the time, Ferrara said, and about half of those paying customers are teams of less than 20 people. With today's new third party integration through an update dubbed Nimble Everywhere, the company hopes to attract the attention of larger companies and boost conversion rates to paid services.

That could mean hiring an outside sales team, something Ferrara said he is ready to do.

Social CRM Company Nimble Integrates with Gmail, Outlook
Nimble contacts can be pulled right into Gmail thus removing the step of having to switch back and forth between applications.

Updated Features

Days before Nimble unveiled this latest update, it debuted the Office 365 integration. Taken together, it becomes clear what the Nimble everywhere moniker really means. It's about getting the tool into the places where people spend much of their workday ... specifically, in their inboxes and business productivity suites. Since Microsoft Office is still the productivity suite leader, the partnership makes sense.

Nimble can prompt people to connect with a particular contact on a monthly, weekly or quarterly basis, depending on their relationship.

This is where the social media integration come in. When it's time to connect to a particular contact, Nimble can comb all of his social media feeds to determine what he has been talking about. That can make the contact most relevant and timely.

Social business tools like Nimble are allowing knowledge workers to adapt to the mobile, social work world. As the Nimbles of the world proliferate and become more popular, it will be interesting to see exactly where each tool excels and what kinds of businesses adopt them.