More than a few pairs of eyes are on Cirrus Insight, the Laguna Hills, Calif., CRM app developer that integrates Salesforce with Gmail. Nearly 7,300 pairs of eyes, to be precise.
We know. Our last two pieces on the 13-employee provider -- our Nov. 26 piece, Cirrus Insight to Unite Salesforce, Gmail on Mobile Devices and our Cirrus Insight Brings Pardot, Hubspot Marketing Automation to Gmail piece on Feb. 6 generated this interest.
So why’s the little two-year-old provider so hot at the moment?
Customer: Winning Over Employees
Endeavor, the New York City global nonprofit that connects entrepreneurs with established businesses and industry moves and shakers in emerging and growth markets, is a Cirrus Insight customer.
They currently support 326 companies, more than 800 entrepreneurs and more than 2,000 active mentors. They claim to have created 200,000-plus high-quality jobs and generated $5 billion in revenues in 2011.
Endeavor uses Salesforce to manage its global operations, and Google Apps for email, calendar and contacts.
Where does Cirrus Insight enter the picture? With Endeavor’s AppExchange app that connects Google Apps with Salesforce.
Peter Olivier, project manager for the Endeavor Access platform, where Endeavor manages its clients, told CMSWire his organization has been using Cirrus Insight’s apps since last summer. Initially just himself and a couple colleagues, Olivier said the entire New York City-based team is using it, and there are plans to roll it out to 200 more worldwide.
“We are in that crew of people who are excited about Cirrus,” Olivier said. “The reason Cirrus has been so successful and useful to us is that it allows you to develop critical information that is in your CRM or Salesforce and get it into the place where people make decisions.”
And that would be, in this case, the Gmail inbox. How are you going to write that email? Who are you going to send it to?
“Those things are happening in the inbox,” said Olivier, whose team is almost complete with a migration from Office to Gmail for its enterprise email system.
No Justification of Resources Needed
Traditionally, people on Salesforce struggle to enter pertinent information on customers. “You ask them to write an email, and then go someplace else to go log that in. It’s asking a lot,” Olivier said. “People get tired of that.”
Enter Cirrus -- which Olivier said handles those capabilities automatically. It avoids the time and expense of employees tracking information in their CRM. And it encourages people to use their CRM platform because the information is presented in there nice and clean for them via Cirrus Insight, which scans Gmail and weaves pertinent customer details into Salesforce platforms.
Olivier said Endeavor sees using Cirrus Insight’s integration as “insurance" because hundreds of employees can deliver relevant, timely messages that are not repetitive to executives that don’t have time for junk mail.
“It’s very difficult to justify the cost of doing that,” Olivier said of having employees go back and forth from email to CRM. “It just takes so long to log each one of your prospects. … The commonality faced by all organizations is 'How do you get people to use the CRM and find it useful?' And for us, the integration that Cirrus brings from the inbox to our CRM system -- I haven’t seen a better one.”
Finding the Right Partners
Jason Hubbard, vice president of marketing at Cirrus Insight, took a humble approach when CMSWire asked, “Why are you so hot?”
“I’d love to say it’s because of us,” Hubbard said. “But I think it’s more likely because of the companies we are working with. … Marketing automation is pretty red hot right now. People love to see anything about marketing automation especially something to democratize it and bring it to the Gmail inbox to make things more accessible.”
If you use Salesforce and Gmail, you’re a potential Cirrus Insight customer. Hubbard said the organization’s “bread and butter” are small to medium-sized business but that it is going up market and courting more larger enterprises.
Cirrus Insight, he added, has been able to springboard off “good brand names” and make technology more usable -- “which is our value proposition with regard to Salesforce. It is a great product, but it requires you to leave the inbox. If we can bring that to where people live and work, that’s great.”
On Wednesday, Cirrus Insight made another move when it announced it integrated Adobe Echosign, a digital signature solution for the Salesforce platform, with Gmail. The platform allows Cirrus Insight and Echosign customers to send contracts for signature without leaving their inbox.