Mercury Grove unleashes a Network Hippo on CRM solutions

Posted by Robert Janelle

Network Hippo

 

Over the past few years, social media has altered the way we use the Internet and communicate online and it has brought many neat tools.

One downside, however, is many people have information spread across a variety of places: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Flickr and many others.

With more information available than ever on potential contacts and sales leads, how do you keep it all together?

This is the problem Ottawa's Mercury Grove looks to solve with the release of Network Hippo, a new customer relationship management application.

At first, Network Hippo seems to operate like other CRMs. It has a contact import (Gmail, Hotmail, CSV and vCard among others) to place people in your network and you're then able to rate the importance and strength of your connection to that contact. Notes and the Web 2.0 staple, tags, can be also be added.

Where Network Hippo shows its power is the "On the web" tab in the contact page.

Network Hippo's

Clicking that tab will show the user additional information available on that contact from around the web, including photos on Flickr, their LinkedIn profile, online news clippings and the contact's Twitter feed.

That said, the web-search feature can require some user input if the person you getting new information on happens to have a fairly common name, in which case you'll have to specify which results are relevant and which are not (as was the case when importing Techvibes president Rob Lewis.)

The search results can be integrated into the CRM in different ways. For example, you can set a photo from a contact's Flickr gallery as their profile photo.

There are other ways to "Feed the hippo" as well.

Network Hippo can import e-mails from an IMAP account to look for communication patterns, as well as keeping notes on phone calls and meetings and setting reminders of tasks that need to be completed with your network.

The service generates reports based on the information it is fed and provides information such as who has been contacted most often and can note how long it has been since any kind of communication or activity has taken place in the network.

In keeping with the social media theme, the service also makes it easy for colleagues to pool their contacts.

Finally, there's one more feature that differentiates Network Hippo from other CRM apps: personal accounts.

Mercury Grove is encouraging users to set up a personal account which can be easily linked to a corporate account and take their connections with them, even if they move to another company.

The service is up and running, offering free (ad supported) personal accounts and company accounts for $29/month per user. Non-profits can get that price discounted to $19/month.

Company:
Mercury Grove
Website:
http://www.mercurygrove.com
Location:
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

We believe in providing a better technology experience through great software and exceptional support. Mercury Grove develops software and provides professional consulting for medium and large businesses in the US and Canada. We currently have offices in Lexington, Kentucky, and Ottawa, Canada and a distributed team across North America and Asia. We opened our doors in 2005 as a small consulting company focused on... more

Company:
Network Hippo
Website:
http://www.networkhippo.com
Location:
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

You can use Network Hippo for your personal network, work, non-profit organization, and association - and share contacts between different networks. If you cancel or leave an organization, the network disappears, but information about people in your personal network doesn't! We make sure you won't ever lose valuable information by keeping a record of all activities related to people in your network in your... more


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Robert Janelle

Robert Janelle

Robert Janelle is a freelance technology journalist living in the National Capital Region. He's spent time covering the Ottawa start-up scene as a columnist and feature writer with his work in National Capital Scan, The Ottawa Citizen, The Ottawa Sun, Kingston Whig-Standard and The Escapist. He also suffers from a mild addiction to video games. more



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