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May 02, 2008

CRM Enhancement from Ascendix Chosen by Real Estate Investment Trust

By David Sims
TMCnet Contributing Editor

Whitestone REIT, a self-managed Real Estate Investment Trust that owns and operates properties in the Southwest U.S., and Ascendix Technologies, developer of Real Estate Advantage, have announced that Whitestone picked Real Estate Advantage for its existing Microsoft (News - Alert) Dynamics CRM implementation.
Whitestone REIT originally selected Microsoft Dynamics CRM as a general purpose CRM across the enterprise. Later, the company realized it needed to complement their existing Yardi Voyager Property Management product, said Ted Zeck, Vice President of Information Systems: “We plan to assimilate Voyager data into Real Estate Advantage, affording all of our departments with a 360-degree view of property, lease, and tenant facts, figures, and communication.”
Early this year, Ascendix announced the availability of Nurture Marketing for Real Estate Advantage, a CRM product built on the Microsoft CRM platform and “tailored for the commercial real estate industry.” The product “helps maintain relationships such as prospects and tenants from being overlooked.”
“Some leads that companies generate need to be nurtured over time. These leads tend to be overlooked or forgotten about in favor of a more viable prospect,” company officials say. “Nurture Marketing for Real Estate Advantage is designed especially for managing nurture marketing campaigns within MSCRM,” a mid-market sales automation system.
Nurture Marketing for Real Estate Advantage allows for marketing to define and maintain action plans — “each action plan can have multiple steps,” such as printing a letter, sending an e-mail message, or scheduling a phone call. Action plans are customizable, allowing sales reps to assign the appropriate action plan to a contact and track the progress of each assigned action plan.
There’s also a “Fulfillment Center,” allowing for the printing of letters and related envelopes or labels, as well as the automatic scheduling of subsequent steps. Included with the product is a facility to create action plans accessible to all users of MSCRM.
Last year, Ascendix announced the availability of its Real Estate Advantage CRM offering in a hosted model. It was pitched for situations where an on-premises installation of Real Estate Advantage is not possible or desirable, so hosting options have been made available and are packaged in two different offerings.
David Sims is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To see more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.

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