FreeAgent CRM Bonsai Release

Welcome to FreeAgent CRM Bonsai

If you saw last week’s Taco Tuesday, you’re probably dying of suspense about our big release. Well, wait no more! We’re excited to officially release Bonsai, delivering an always-on marketing platform for small business teams to grow their business efficiently, increase customer loyalty, and gain deeper customer insight.

1. Mailchimp Integration

Included in the release, is a best-in-class integration with Mailchimp, the industry-leading email marketing solution, for email activities within a Campaign.

2. All-in-One Small Business Platform

Small business teams need everything in one place. That’s why we’re continuing to innovate FreeAgent CRM as the only all-in-one platform of it’s kind. This extends to the way we integrate your favorite tools, like Mailchimp. Generic CRM simulates this by tagging on apps around their original hard-coded systems on a surface level – but these micro-integrations can’t grow with you as your business grows and are not extensible as small business needs evolve. At FreeAgent, we do things differently.


FreeAgent CRM Bonsai Release

February 19, 2019


Release Overview


Email Marketing

Free Agents already love their email drip campaigns, orchestrating unique steps based on segmentation. This has always been a key feature for making sure your customers feel catered to – not marketed to. Staying true to this customer-first approach in bulk outbound mailing was our top priority.

That’s why we’re really proud to support Amazon Simple Email Service and Mailchimp – makers of the industry-leading email marketing solution – who also believe what we believe:

“We make innovative, beautiful products that empower small businesses”.

 .  

A lot of small businesses we talk to started with Mailchimp before looking at CRM software. As business grows, it becomes necessary to add more robust contact management with a central system of record – not to mention sales and customer service. For small businesses, to be able to work with the tools they’re already using has been a huge help in a successful CRM adoption (and when 80% of CRM adoptions fail, we take that pretty seriously here at FreeAgent.)

“Our customers are especially excited about the Mailchimp integration. We’ve combined their beautiful email templates and simple outbound bulk emailing with power and simplicity of the FreeAgent platform.”

– Ryan Manning, CSO and Co-Founder of FreeAgent CRM


Import Contacts Automatically, from Anywhere

Relevant and comprehensive contact data is key to running an effective marketing campaign. FreeAgent CRM can increase the accuracy of your house list by 45% by connecting to a variety of resources such as:

  • Web Forms: Connect FreeAgent CRM to your website to create or update contacts in real-time
  • Mailchimp Lists: Sync your Mailchimp mailing lists to FreeAgent in just a few clicks
  • Spreadsheets: Import all your CSV files into FreeAgent
  • Suggested Contacts: A dynamically updated list of people that seem like high potential prospects or important contacts. It works auto-magically with the email you paired with FreeAgent CRM.

Quickly Build Target Lists that Stay Relevant as Contact Data Changes

Filtering and segmenting contact data doesn’t have to be complicated. Campaign targets can be setup in minutes, not hours. More importantly, dynamic lists can increase email open and click rates 2x by ensuring the right contacts are receiving the right message.

  • Advanced Filtering: From out-of-the-box to custom fields, users can apply an unlimited amount of conditions to target and filter contacts into segments, or views into a certain set of contact data. These segments can be saved away for later use in FreeAgent CRM.
  • Dynamic Lists: Don’t you hate it when a former client receives content related to an existing client campaign? FreeAgent views are dynamic, not static! So, as new leads are added OR existing contacts are edited to include data specific to that view, they’ll be automatically added to or removed from your segment lists.

Automate A Single Message, or a Nurture Series

Make life easier with intuitive workflows that leverage automation triggers. You can set up campaigns that automate loads of manual tasks and increase customer retention rates by 10- 15%. More than just emails, FreeAgent CRM can automate all your work as you nurture contacts towards your campaign goal.
You can do things like…

  • Create a welcome email that fires out as soon as a contact fills out an online form
  • Build a drip series that send emails at specific times and auto-creates Next Step reminders to Call
  • Re-engage with contacts who haven’t opened your emails or answered calls from you in a while by asking how you can serve them better
  • Send a follow-up series to contacts who have engaged with a previous campaign

Optimize Your Marketing Efforts

With FreeAgent CRM analytics, you can get a little smarter with every campaign. Unlike stand- alone email marketing solutions, FreeAgent can track data beyond just email open and click rates by:

  • Tracking and analyzing ALL customer interactions, not just email: phone call outcomes, meetings, and more
  • Correlating data outside of the Campaign container
  • Previous, existing, or future purchases or customer satisfaction rates

 

Want to learn more? Check out our growing tutorial category:

Mailchimp Tutorials


Send us your feedback!

Like the new updates? Let us know! Have an idea to improve the usability of FreeAgent CRM? Chat us up, send us an email, or give us a call.

Taco Tuesday: Preview Cards you’ll love at first sight!

Preview Cards you’ll love at first sight!

Plus, introducing a whole new kind of data relationship

FreeAgent CRM Platform Update February 5, 2019

In this update:

6-Part Preview Cards
Icon Library
M2M Relationships


Preview Cards you’ll love at first sight, because they know exactly what matters most to you!

Your data is important. But the same information isn’t equally important to every company. You’re unique! That’s why we launched Configurable Preview Cards in the Aspen Release. This Taco Tuesday, we’re launching enhancements to Preview Cards that makes them WAY more powerful – and a little prettier, too!


A refresher on Configurable Preview Cards:

  • See what matters to you – Each object has its own card configuration so you can decide which fields are most important to your business.
  • Set it and forget it – Your custom Cards show all throughout the application (Rolodex, Board, Related List) but you only have to configure it once.
  • Your team on the same page – Your custom Card configuration is shared with your whole team, making collaboration even more seamless.
  • Don’t forget mobile – Unlike any other CRM, Cards even show on your mobile app with your custom configuration, so it works for you wherever you work.

What’s a Preview Card?

We call it a preview because these cards provide a quick overview of your Detail Card which is complete with segments of data for Filtering, Sorting, and Reporting. This includes data such as Lead Source, Dates, and even quick links to Account and Referral Contacts.

You can include any of FreeAgent’s out-of-the-box fields or your own Custom Fields, so each card is truly unique to your business.

This latest enhancement to Preview Cards brings your most important information front and center while minimizing what’s less important, so your experience stays uncluttered and visually-pleasing (one of your favorite things about FreeAgent CRM!)

Here’s what’s new:

  • All objects will now have the 6 field layout (previously only on Contacts) with the option to select “None” (so you can have 4 or 5 if you prefer)
  • Ability to hide/show the Next Step footprint icon on the card
  • Ability to select an icon from the Icon Library that will be used as a default image for records of that object
    • This replaces the initials that were previously used on records that did not have an image
    • You can still use auto-magic google search to populate an image on any record and it will show instead of the icon
    • Have instant context across Contacts, Accounts, Deals and Custom Tabs


Watch the Video!
Discover the Power of Configurable Preview Cards with Ryan


Want to learn more?

Check out the tutorial:
How can I customize the configuration for the Cards?


M2M Relationships

This Taco Tuesday also introduces a new type of data relationship to FreeAgent CRM.

M2M, or Many-to-Many, is an incredibly powerful relationship type you can now enjoy across the platform with both Standard and Custom objects.

Here’s an example from ZenPPM – a company with a custom object Products. Deals can be related to many Products AND Products can be related to many Deals.

Here’s what that could look like in FreeAgent CRM on the Products and Deals tabs:

Things to Know

An M2M relationship is created between two objects when a field is added of type: Reference – Multi Select.

When this field is added:

  • There will be a Related list on both objects so that you will always know which records are related
  • You’ll always have the ability to select “Manage object_name” in the “Things You Can Do” dropdown

Want to learn more? Check out the tutorial.

What is a Reference – Multi Select Custom Field?


Automatic Activity Roll-Up

By Free Agent request! You asked for the ability to turn off and on the automatic roll-up of activities between the following objects:

  • Leads to Deals
  • Leads to Companies
  • Companies to Deals

You got it! Make changes to your roll-up settings in Settings > Activity Roll Ups

Things to Know

  • Turning activity roll-ups on or off will only impact activities made after the change, and will not update/change any past activities that were already rolled-up

Enjoy!

 

FreeAgent CRM Aspen Release

Welcome to FreeAgent CRM Aspen

We’re particularly excited here at FreeAgent to announce our latest release, FreeAgent CRM Aspen – with a fresh and exciting new look, powerful new features, and major enhancements to usability.

For months we’ve been working on this special update and we’re thrilled to be able to share it with you. These enhancements represent progress in two of our biggest goals:

1. Usability

First and foremost, your mission is our motivation, so we constantly innovate to find better ways for you to accomplish your goals easier and faster.
» Read more: Usability Refinements to FreeAgent CRM, June 15, 2018

You could say that usability in CRM is how easy it is to use powerful tools. Most CRM’s get more complex and more rigid as they add features – that’s why they all end up the same, and nothing like your actual business. Which leads to our next goal…

2. Do things differently

As a small business owner, you do things differently. That’s why we’re continuing to innovate FreeAgent CRM as the only platform of it’s kind – one that’s as unique as you are, and will grow with you as your business needs change.


FreeAgent CRM Aspen Release

November 6, 2018


Overview

  • 25%+ faster
  • The “rolodex” is now available for Deals and Accounts, enabling you to quickly move from Deal to Deal or Account to Account
  • Board layout has been completely re-designed
    • It now shows 30% more records in the same vertical space
    • You can now pivot on even more fields
    • You can now drag-and-drop records on custom choice field pivots
    • You can pivot on date fields and choose various bucketing options
  • The Card that FreeAgent CRM shows for a Contact, Deal, or Account is now CONFIGURABLE! You decide what fields are most important and, voila, they’ll appear consistently throughout the desktop AND mobile app

Common Layouts

Previously, the layouts for leads, accounts, and deals were designed to be different. When you asked that the Rolodex layout be extended to Accounts and Deals, we got to work! But we also got to thinking…

Users should have the same experience no matter where they are in FreeAgent CRM.

Now all major Objects (you might call them Tabs – i.e. Leads, Deals, Accounts) will have the same awesome layout options.

3 Layouts to Optimize Efficiency

 

Rolodex Layout
Form meets function. This layout is a game-changer when you’re working through a list and taking actions, like calls or emails.

List Layout
Sometimes a traditional list is the best way to view and search for information.

Board Layout
When you want a visual view of important data. Use the power of pivot to unlock endless board configurations. Enjoyable drag-and-drop interface to make global changes.

 


Custom Card Configurations

While you already have complete control over fields, tabs, labels and lists (and just about everything else) you also asked for the ability to customize the card layouts, too. That’s exactly what we did.

  • See what matters to you – Each object has its own card configuration so you can decide which fields are most important to your business.
  • Set it and forget it – Your custom Cards show all throughout the application (Rolodex, Board, Related List) but you only have to configure it once.
  • Your team on the same page – Your custom Card configuration is shared with your whole team, making collaboration even more seamless.
  • Don’t forget mobile – Unlike any other CRM, Cards even show on your mobile app with your custom configuration, so it works for you wherever you work.


Board Layout Enhancements

You told us you love the board layout. And now, your custom Card configurations will show in every board across every Object (Tab). But we wondered if we could make it even more loveable. Here’s what’s we added:

More ways to view the data that’s important to you

  • Pivot by any date or number fields
  • Specify the column grouping when pivoting on a date field (Daily, Weekly, Monthly, Quarterly)
  • Smarter filters on date fields

Auto-Sum
Choose a currency field to aggregate the columns in you board layout (Example: Calculate the Amount field on Deals)

 


Send us your feedback!

Like the new updates? Let us know! Have an idea to improve the usability of FreeAgent CRM? Chat us up, send us an email, or give us a call.

Usability Refinements to FreeAgent CRM

We’re taking some big steps forward in usability for core pages within the FreeAgent CRM application. This blog post walks you through what we have done, are doing, and have planned – and includes some of the “why” as well.

Usability is a fundamental value at FreeAgent CRM. You can count on us to always be pushing forward to provide you the simplest, best way of managing your customer relationships.

The Problem: Inconsistency Across Leads, Accounts, and Deals

Today, leads, accounts, and deals all offer a slightly different user experience. This can make simpler things challenging – like knowing where to find an edit button, to having enough room to view a lengthy activity timeline, to understanding how to search.

When our project is complete all 3 areas: leads, accounts, and deals, will offer identical navigation and action options. So you will always know how to navigate and act, no matter where you are in the FreeAgent CRM app.

The “How”

The usability work involves several steps.

Step 1 – A common “detailed” page with an expandable Activity Timeline and central “Things You Can Do”

Step 2 – Standardizing the “rolodex” layout across Leads, Accounts, and Deals

Step 3 – Removing “card list” layout & adding customizability to rolodex cards

A common “detailed” page

You may have noticed these improvements already! Now for Leads, Accounts, and Deals you have a common detailed page with the same layout options and behaviors. The page supports expanding the Activity Timeline, especially helpful for Leads. For now, the Lead detailed page is accessible only from the List and Board layout views.

Standardizing the “rolodex”

The next phase of the project, currently under development, is to take the “rolodex” layout, improve it, and then extend it across Leads, Accounts, and Deals. Many of our customers are very excited about using the “rolodex” layout for Accounts and Deals since it makes navigating from record to record very easy.

Removing the “card list” layout & adding customizability to rolodex cards

The final phase of the project will remove the “card list” entirely & allow you to customize the “rolodex” layout to include whatever fields you think are most important for your business. This phase of the project is still in the design stage.

Send us your feedback!

Like our plans above? Let us know! Have an idea to improve the usability of FreeAgent CRM? Chat us up, send us an email, or give us a call.

 

Letting Simplicity Speak

“The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak.”  -Hans Hofmann, Abstract Expressionist Painter

Today we are dropping the wings from our FreeAgent CRM logo.

As you may know, our vision is to design an application that is easy and simple for anyone to use. There is no tolerance for overly complex workflows and processes within our application. Daily we scrutinize our product and ask, “How can we make this more simple?” If a feature cannot be defended, it is removed. Some of our best designs have come from removing features rather than from adding them.

We love the wings on our FreeAgent CRM logo—they represent freedom from the chains of legacy CRM systems. With FreeAgent CRM, you my friend, are free to fly high. And while this remains true, now more than ever, we forced ourselves to look at our logo and asked ourselves if the wings were absolutely necessary in telling our story? In a word, no. So we simplified. Our logo is now itself freed, to say all on its own: “I represent simplicity and ease of use”. This is value we stand firmly behind.

Beautiful Calendaring & FreeAgent CRM Meet

Free Agents now enjoy beautiful Day, Week, and Monthly calendar views right inside the platform. These views pull in all your meetings from your Gmail or Office 365 account and also include your Next Steps – so you see everything coming!

Enjoy your workday with a platform designed to be visually stunning and beautifully simple.

Lead Automation – Phase 1

Today we’ve introduced the first set of changes to better support Lead Automation in FreeAgent.

We’ve enhanced the “rolodex” view of Leads, and now show you at a glance how many Attempts you’ve made to contact your leads. We show you the lead status & any Next Steps you need to accomplish. Next Steps will be very, very useful quite soon – we will use Next Steps to give you the ability to do email drip campaigns and automatically set followup rules.

We’ve also enhanced the List view of Leads, adding a “Next Steps” field so you can see all the upcoming actions you need to take with your leads. This is sortable! So you can pull up your leads & sort them by the ones that most need your attention. Good stuff!

Along with these changes you’ll notice a friendlier “big font” menu, and, just like in our native mobile apps, each section of our CRM is now color-coded! Leads are green, deals are blue, and so on. We’ve found these “color cues” help keep you on track and super focused in the App.

We hope you enjoy these improvements. Our CRM is advancing 10 times faster than anyone else’s on the market. Already the easiest to use, we aim to be the most powerful for small business too!

Please share your feedback with us & thank you for powering your business with FreeAgent CRM.

 

 

The Automations are Coming!

FreeAgent CRM will soon allow you to automate how you followup with leads! Want to send all new leads a Welcome email, follow it up with a phone call, then email them again in a day? No problem! Let me know if you’d like to preview what we’ll be delivering.

 

Ahora está disponible en Español :) / Now available in Spanish

FreeAgent CRM ya tiene la versión en español! Tenemos una oficina en Guadalajara y vamos a crecer nuestra presencia en México y otros países de habla hispana, manteniendo nuestro compromiso con las empresas latinoamericanas para incrementar sus ventas.

Sin más por el momento, me despido, 🙂

Davíd