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Old May 30th, 2010, 07:30 AM   #1
hhk
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Alternatives to Daylite and Contactizer

I need a CRM. Maybe I need more of a PIM because I don't need to share my info with anyone. I basically want to associate contacts with documents, files and emails. If Address Book supported attachments or links, it would probably suit my needs.

This is a tough choice because if you spend more than a few weeks with a CRM, you've got a ton of data in there and it's hard to switch. Too much sunk cost.

I looked at Contactizer. The amount of complaints in their forum simply turned me off.

Daylite looked better. More robust. Better support. But, here's what gets me - all the nickel and diming. $229 for Daylite, $59 for mail integration, $50/year for iPhone support. The last one has me really scratching my head. A lot of people will choose Daylite over a cloud app because they don't want to pay a subscription. So why add a subscription component to a non-cloud app? I don't understand the logic there. Whoever thought of that at Marketcircle needs to have their head examined.

So what are my alternatives? Do I choke down my disdain for subscription fees and go with a cloud app? What are you folks liking?
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Old May 30th, 2010, 12:49 PM   #2
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I use a program called ActiveCollab. It sits on my server though, and not locally installed, so maybe not your thing. I use it for managing clients/projects so maybe overkill for your needs as well. It used to be free but isn't any longer, though was worth the $500 in my case. There is a similar open-source system that's also good, though not quite as feature rich called Project Pier.

For the record, I have used Daylite and it's very good. I am a Billings user so am familiar with the company that created it. It just didn't do quite what I needed it to. Lots of companies these days are trying to figure out how to have both an upfront cost and monthly revenue stream. I'm starting to see it often.
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Old May 31st, 2010, 10:32 AM   #3
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Another possibility

You can go to my site and take a look at "Little Helper". It started out as a cheap simple contact manager. It has morphed over the versions to a small business omnibus program. It's $150.00, single time fee for a single user, still pretty cheap.

It is written in FileMaker Pro, but for single users I have it on a runtime engine so there are no additional purchases. It just won't network using a runtime engine.

It has the following:

contact database supporting multiple groups - it's pretty extensive in what it will capture
scheduling
communications capture - letter, note, phone calls, fax, emails
lead generation (linking contacts to products with sales cycle info)
products
form letter support
multiple letterhead support
limited broadcast email using your email client
income and expense functions- billing items, invoicing, expenses, V.A.T., statements
sales sheets/flyer/catalogue templates
supports multiple work group members
fairly extensive export capability

I have one client with a single user version who runs it on a jump drive. As he goes from client to client, he just plugs in.

Go to:

Integrated Client Management at a Price You Can Afford

and take a look around.
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Old May 31st, 2010, 12:52 PM   #4
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I need a CRM. Maybe I need more of a PIM because I don't need to share my info with anyone. I basically want to associate contacts with documents, files and emails. If Address Book supported attachments or links, it would probably suit my needs.

This is a tough choice because if you spend more than a few weeks with a CRM, you've got a ton of data in there and it's hard to switch. Too much sunk cost.

I looked at Contactizer. The amount of complaints in their forum simply turned me off.

Daylite looked better. More robust. Better support. But, here's what gets me - all the nickel and diming. $229 for Daylite, $59 for mail integration, $50/year for iPhone support. The last one has me really scratching my head. A lot of people will choose Daylite over a cloud app because they don't want to pay a subscription. So why add a subscription component to a non-cloud app? I don't understand the logic there. Whoever thought of that at Marketcircle needs to have their head examined.

So what are my alternatives? Do I choke down my disdain for subscription fees and go with a cloud app? What are you folks liking?
I want to clarify a couple of things.

First the cost of Daylite in Canada is $229 and that includes Mail Integration. This is called Daylite Productivity Suite. The $59 price is for those people that buy Daylite Basic and want to add Mail Integration.

Yes Daylite Touch is $59.95 per device per year. It is not iPhone support, it is for a license to run the Daylite Touch application for a year on either an iPhone, iPod Touch, or an iPad.

My understanding is that it was a combination of things that led to the decision to price the app like that.

First, it is a free app on the app store, the license is installed on the computer that holds the host database. That allows people to try the app free for 30 days.

Second, at the time it came out, people were used to 99 applications. It has only been in the past year that people are becoming accustomed to seeing higher prices for serious business applications. If it had been an app that wasn't an annual subscription, it would have been priced much higher. I had been guessing that we would have seen a price of $99 in Canada. The costs involved in developing this app aren't cheap. The synchronization involved is very complex because Daylite supports multiple users.

Third, one of the conditions of the App Store is that once a user purchases an app, they are entitled to all future versions of that app for free. Therefore it is impossible to get revenue for future upgrades.

We may see changes to the pricing structure in the future. Daylite Touch was released 15 months ago and I'm sure that Marketcircle has learned a lot since then.

Finally, and this to me is the most important. $59.95 per year works out to a little more than a dollar a week, or roughly 16 per day.

The return is well worth the investment.
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Old May 31st, 2010, 01:34 PM   #5
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I have Daylite with mail integration and Billings. I like Daylite's contact management and calendar but I really don't like the way it handles opportunities. I'm also not a big fan of the way it handles tasks. I wish they'd buy Things and integrate it into the suite.

I've been using Highrise for the last 2 months. We've got people working at different sites and I could never get the Daylite server to work across the internet. Being a web based service, Highrise eliminates the need for a server.

Another service that has always interested me is Elements CRM. It seems to integrate nicely with the native Mac applications but for my situation it's not price competitive.
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Old May 31st, 2010, 03:46 PM   #6
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I have Daylite with mail integration and Billings. I like Daylite's contact management and calendar but I really don't like the way it handles opportunities. I'm also not a big fan of the way it handles tasks. I wish they'd buy Things and integrate it into the suite.

I've been using Highrise for the last 2 months. We've got people working at different sites and I could never get the Daylite server to work across the internet. Being a web based service, Highrise eliminates the need for a server.

Another service that has always interested me is Elements CRM. It seems to integrate nicely with the native Mac applications but for my situation it's not price competitive.
Feel free to contact me regarding your Daylite Server problems. Once you get over the initial configuration, you'll love the remote synchronization, especially with version 3.10 and background sychronization.
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Old May 31st, 2010, 10:49 PM   #7
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I stand corrected on the pricing but I did forget to add: $119 for the Moneyworks connector. Looking at the video on the website, it looks like it's just pushing and pulling names and addresses to/from MW. Unless I'm wrong about that, $119 seems a bit steep for what could be accomplished through CSV file import/export.
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Old Jun 1st, 2010, 08:18 AM   #8
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No personal experience with it, but you might also look at Relationship by Jumsoft.
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Old Jun 1st, 2010, 01:45 PM   #9
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I stand corrected on the pricing but I did forget to add: $119 for the Moneyworks connector. Looking at the video on the website, it looks like it's just pushing and pulling names and addresses to/from MW. Unless I'm wrong about that, $119 seems a bit steep for what could be accomplished through CSV file import/export.
It also allows you to create a Daylite Sales Opportunity Estimate using products (and pricing) from your MoneyWorks database which saves you the trouble of maintaining two separate product files. It also allows you to take that estimate and turn it into a MoneyWorks order with a single click.

Everything should be looked at as an investment in your business that results in a return either in improved flow of information, or reduced effort, or both. Not every option is going to benefit every business. As a business owner, you need to determine what is important to your business and what will be worthwhile investing in.
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Old Jun 1st, 2010, 02:03 PM   #10
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Bento

Try "Bento". It's basically FileMaker Pro without all the bells and whistles. Think of Photoshop's "Elements" program as a parallel.

Also has iPhone app integration.

Bento is inexpensive and it talks to Address Book and Calendar. Lots of other goodies too.

I am simply a user of Bento. Not a distributer or reseller or in any way associated with the product other than being an end-user.

My two cents.

Good luck finding your perfect solution!
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