Business information provider OneSource Information Services, Inc. (http://www.onesource.com) has made its content accessible to Salesforce users for some time. Now, OneSource has taken the next step and has announced an easy-to-install product module that embeds business information directly within salesforce.com's on-demand CRM (customer relationship management) system. The new Account Intelligence for Salesforce is part of the OneSource Catalyst line of CRM integration modules, which include offerings for Siebel and Microsoft products. In addition, the product fully supports the just announced AppExchange from salesforce.com, the application sharing service that will be available later this year. The new module serves to hook OneSource up with the growing market for on-demand computing applications and will hopefully snag some of the nearly 17,000 salesforce.com customers—representing a new and thus-far untapped market for OneSource content.
OneSource also announced a new Match and Append service that uses OneSource content specialists to match lists of internal customer and prospect data against OneSource's repository and then to load complete company profile and executive records or update incorrect or missing data fields within customers' existing systems. The new service supports Salesforce, Siebel, Microsoft Word, and other CRM and customer information systems.
OneSource content available through Account Intelligence for Salesforce includes more than 3 million in-depth company profiles featuring 7 million key executive contacts, financial data, corporate structure, analysts' reports, and up-to-date company news. Another key benefit of using the Account Intelligence module is that OneSource helps Salesforce customers bulk load their CRM system with quality information, cleanse existing customer data for accuracy and consistency, and keep their information current.
"salesforce.com and OneSource have a shared vision that places high-value business information at the center of the CRM solution," said Yvonne Cekel, president of OneSource. "By treating data as an essential component rather than an afterthought we're creating a simpler workflow that keeps sales teams more focused, informed, and effective throughout their customer relationships."
Cekel said that the features in the new module were designed to support key business workflows—prospecting, industry tracking, and news monitoring. "We really think we've hit the mark with this product," she commented. "And," she added, "we think this is a huge opportunity to expand our market. salesforce.com is turning on 40,000 new users per quarter (that's 1,500 new customers a quarter) and is moving up in the size of its customers."
"Authentica has been a customer of both OneSource and salesforce.com for some time," said Mark Overington, vice president of marketing for Authentica. "With the new Account Intelligence product, the combination of these two leading solutions is exactly what we need to fully embed business information into our sales process and leverage information in our prospecting, call planning, and solution selling," he added.
Analysts at Outsell commented positively on the level of convergence between content and technology in the new combination: "This OneSource offering pushes the envelope on all those factors by deeply integrating internal content with turnkey addition of external content, an easy data load, additional services available from OneSource's professional services staff, and flexible pricing that allows customers to buy the content sets that best meet their needs."
Industry analyst John Blossom said, "This on-demand solutions packaging is exactly what many enterprises are crying for." He advised: "Content vendors of all stripes should sit up and take note of this development with eyes wide open, for this is the likely future for many kinds of business content as enterprises become used to point-and-click downloads of content services that fit into a wide variety of portal environments with simplified administration and access management."
salesforce.com has been gaining considerable traction in the CRM marketplace, making the OneSource offering look well-timed. In April, Wired released its list of "The Wired 40"—companies it picked as the "masters of technology and innovation." Among the list of big guys, like Google, Yahoo!, IBM, and Dell, was the relative newcomer salesforce.com. Wired was impressed by the company's delivery of software as a Web-based service, noting that the company now helps many thousands of corporate clients manage their customer relations; last year, it brought in $176 million. The article stated: " By eliminating the time and expense of installation, salesforce.com gains a huge advantage: The company released 17 revisions of its software in the same time Microsoft turned around only two versions of its SQL server."
Account Intelligence for Salesforce, which is available immediately, requires either Professional Edition or Enterprise Edition from salesforce.com. Customers can choose from four content packages of increasing depth and a variety of geographical options including U.S., U.K., Europe, Asia, or all of the above. Pricing starts at $600 per user/year; volume discounts apply.
The AppExchange, and its 70 new launch applications (from salesforce.com and third-party developers), are available for preview immediately (http://www.salesforce.com/appexchange). Customers can install applications starting with the release of Winter ‘06, currently expected in 4Q 2005. Interestingly, the OneSource offering is not yet listed on the AppExchange marketplace, but a OneSource representative said it would be very soon.
For more information on the announcements made by salesforce.com, see the coverage at destinationCRM by Marshall Lager: "Salesforce.com's On-Demand Dream" (http://www.destinationcrm.com/articles/default.asp?articleid=5430).