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Microsoft Teams - Collaboration for Every Type of Team (Part 3 of 5)

In this post, I’m going to show how Microsoft Teams can integrate with other applications to streamline your Sales & Marketing processes.

If you’re not familiar with Teams, please check out our previous posts:

I’ve taken several Sales & Marketing oriented apps on a test drive to call out where the integration feels seamless and others that aren’t quite ready for prime time.

Sales & Marketing Connectors in Teams

As stated in the previous posts, the software descriptions below are not meant to be exhaustive. All of these are awesome stand-alone products. This series is designed to call out the integration points specifically with Teams if you are considering new investments or trying to rationalize ones already made.


Marketing connectors in Teams

Social connectors in Teams
Social connectors in Teams

MailChimp

MailChimp is a is a marketing automation platform and an email marketing service that allows users to create templates and marketing lists.

There’s only one configuration option available – how often you want updates posted in Teams.

MailChimp set up screen
MailChimp set up screen

Pros of using MailChimp with Teams
  • Campaign performance reports can be sent hourly, daily or weekly
  • Alerts show how many email recipients opened, clicked, unsubscribed and bounced
  • A link to the campaign mail is provided

 

MailChimp alert in Teams
MailChimp alert in Teams

Cons of using MailChimp with Teams

I can’t find any downside here. It’s an efficient way to get a quick look at how your email campaign is progressing without having to log in anywhere else.

Twitter

Twitter is a widely used social platform. No more explanation needed.

Twitter set up screen 1
Twitter set up screen 1

The Good: Twitter with Teams
  • Select which accounts and hashtags to follow
    • Tip: when entering hashtags, enter neither the # character nor any spaces
  • Set up to see Tweets in Teams immediately, 15 or 30 minutes, hourly or daily
  • Like or Retweet from within Teams
  • Click to open any Tweet in Twitter
  • Easy to adjust hashtags and frequency once configured

Tweets from #marketingtips as seen in Teams interface
Tweets from #marketingtips as seen in Teams interface

The Just OK: Twitter with Teams

While quite a few nice features are fully integrated into Teams, there’s a couple things to call out:

  • Can’t dedicate a tab to Twitter. The tweets will show in the Channel’s feed along with everything else. I highly suggest creating a Channel explicitly for Twitter so that other important chats don’t get lost in the mix.
  • Can’t create new Tweets from Teams

Yammer

Yammer is a private platform for enterprise social networking and is included in many Office 365 subscriptions.

The Good: Yammer with Teams
  • Can select which Yammer Group(s) to listen to
  • Can select which type of activity to follow, such as a particular user or keyword

Yammer set up screen
Yammer set up screen

  • Can select frequency from as quickly as immediately to weekly
  • Updates in Yammer show up in channel’s feed and provide direct link to post
  • Can ‘like’ posts from within Teams

 

Yammer post showing in Teams
Yammer post showing in Teams 

The Not as Good: Yammer with Teams
  • Can’t reply to posts from within Teams
  • Can’t create new posts from Teams

(Disclaimer: I think the solid integration that Trello and Smartsheets provided has set my expectations very high while testing other apps. See the Teams for Project Management post to see these beautiful tools work with Teams)

Dynamics 365 Sales

Dynamics 365 Sales is the new version of Dynamics CRM Online. It allows your team to track contacts, accounts, leads and opportunities. It also integrates into Office 365 and SharePoint.

Teams connected to A. Datum in Dynamics
Teams connected to A. Datum in Dynamics

Well, as a direct integration, I’m a bit non-plussed. I configured a channel to be notified with updates of activities on a specific account, A. Datum. I then went into Dynamics 365 and changed their credit terms, their credit line, and added a phone call with a follow up due date. Nothing was sent to the channel in Teams. I then created a new opportunity and still nothing in Teams.

So, it’s Microsoft Flow to the rescue…? There’s a built-in template to alert users that a new opportunity has been created. Kind of. It doesn’t actually configure the alert to be based on opportunities, you have to dig through the options and select the Opportunity Sales Process.

Flow template for Dynamics
Flow template for Dynamics

And…once set up, it doesn’t provide great information or even a link back to the opportunity in Dynamics.

Alert for a new opportunity
Alert for a new opportunity

I don’t know about you, but I don’t find that very helpful. I was unable to find a way to have it even return the account name.

I’m calling this one a bust at this point. Maybe they’ll play nicely together in the future, but for now, I have other apps to test.

Salesforce

Salesforce is a cloud-based customer relationship management software solution for sales, service, marketing, collaboration, and analytics.

After being disappointed with the Dynamics integration, setting up this integration looked promising.

Salesforce set up screen
Salesforce set up screen

To their standard options, I added Last Activity in the hopes that any activity on this account would generate an alert.

Salesforce connected to Teams
Salesforce connected to Teams

I then went into Salesforce and created an opportunity, a lead, a note and a task. The only alert sent to Teams was about the task:

Task from Salesforce posted in Teams
Task from Salesforce posted in Teams

So, again I turned to Flow to see if it could help. There is a Flow template available that is supposed to send notifications to Teams when a new opportunity has been created in Salesforce. 

Flow template for Salesforce
Flow template for Salesforce

Unfortunately, it requires a developer to enable the REST API in Salesforce before Flow can communicate. 

Rest API not activated
Rest API not activated

After reading a Salesforce support thread that spans three years of developers trying to figure out how to activate this API and getting no answer, I am moving on now.

Up Next - Connectors and Bots for more Teams

There are still more tools to test! Future blogs on will focus on Customer Service, HR & Recruiting, Admin Teams, and Developer/Coding work groups and will include integrations for the following, and a whole lot more:

  • Github
  • Zendesk
  • Delighted
  • Groove

If there are other connectors you’d like us to take on a test run, of if you’d be willing to share your experience using Teams for Sales & Marketing, please let us know via LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter or solutions@amaxra.com

Contact us at licensing@amaxra.com or call 425 749 7471 for a no-obligation consultation on how we can help you get more value from your software investment.

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